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DUIs on your criminal and driving records in California

How long does a DUI stay on your record in California?

The penalties for a driving while intoxicated charge increase the more DUIs you have in your past. But how long ago can prosecutors look back? Will a conviction from 1973 be used against you? What about one from five years ago?

If you're wondering how long a DUI conviction can be used as a prior offense, the quick answer is 10 years. But your DUI could still be a black mark on your record even if it happened 30 years ago. There really is a permanent record when it comes to criminal convictions.

At Kroger Law Group, we know that a previous DUI conviction can have consequences even if you've done everything right since your first arrest. If a prior DUI charge is giving you problems, or if you are wondering how a new charge will affect you in the future, you need an experienced California DUI lawyer. Call us at 323-655-5700 or use our contact page to set up a free, confidential consultation.

Find answers to five of the top questions we get asked about DUIs on your record on the page below. As an experienced Los Angeles DUI defense law firm, we know that this probably doesn't cover all the questions you have. That's why we encourage you to call or message us. We're here to help you with your case.

Sniffer glass of whisky handcuffed to a driving wheel
Driving while intoxicated convictions can have lasting consequences

How long will a DUI conviction stay on your criminal record in California?

A DUI conviction is like any other conviction in California: it stays on your permanent criminal record. For more information about what this means, see our page on how long a felony stays on your record

Can all DUIs on your criminal record be used as subsequent DUI convictions?

No. After 10 years, a prior conviction cannot be used to enhance a subsequent DUI.

You've probably heard of people being charged with first-offense DUI, second offense DUI and so on. Previous offenses are “priors” or “priorable” if they can be used to make a subsequent charge worse.

To charge you with a second offense DUI, the prosecutor has to prove that you were arrested with a priorable offense within 10 years of the second offense. Priorable offenses include per se DUIs where you have a blood alcohol concentration above the legal limit. They also include "wet reckless" driving offenses where the use of alcohol is suspected.

Does a DUI arrest show up on your criminal background check?

Unfortunately, criminal background checks are not standardized, so there is no way of being sure if an arrest will show up or not. A DUI conviction shows up on most background checks. Sometimes, a background check will show an arrest but not show that the case was dismissed in court. That's why it's important to know if someone is going to get a background check on you. If you believe someone has the wrong idea about your previous criminal charge, your former attorney may have the records that can prove what happened. We are also happy to help.

For more information on what an employer can consider in your criminal history, see our page on how long felonies stay on your record.

Can you remove a DUI from your driving record?

Maybe. If your DUI record is expunged, it will probably not show up on a criminal background check. However, it will still be on your driving record for 10 years.

You can get an expungement for a DUI conviction using the same rules and procedures as any other California criminal conviction. You are eligible for an expungement once you have completed your probation and paid all of your fines and fees. You do not have to wait 10 years to ask for a DUI expungement.

How long will points from a DUI affect your driving record?

A DUI conviction in California will add 2 points to your driving record for five years. That's one reason why people who have been charged with a DUI come see us for help. As experienced Los Angeles DUI lawyers, we may be able to negotiate with the prosecutor to change your charges to ones that do not carry points.

If an old DUI or a new charge has you worried, contact Los Angeles DUI lawyer William S. Kroger today.

Don't wonder about your chances; find out how we can help. Set up a free, confidential consultation with William Kroger and the Kroger Law Group. Call us today at 323-655-5700 or go to our contact page to send us a message right now.

Contact William S. Kroger Today

If you are in need of an experienced criminal defense lawyer in Los Angeles, CA who is proficient in marijuana, drug & criminal law, there’s simply no better attorney than William S. Kroger. Contact Me

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