When you’re facing a DUI charge, nothing is as important as taking the necessary measures to ensure you’re not found guilty. This starts by speaking a DUI attorney who has a deep understanding of the law and will strive to support you throughout the legal proceedings. Finding the right Orange County DUI attorney can mean the difference between a clean criminal record and a conviction or between freedom and prison. As such, you need an attorney with the skills, reputation, and experience to aggressively represent your best interests. The consequence of a DUI conviction can include jail time, fines and fees, probation, court-ordered classes, and loss of license. A DUI on your criminal record can also affect insurance rates, impact your future, and tarnish your reputation. Building a strong defense is your best chance at fighting the charges and getting the best results possible.
At Orange County DUI Defense Lawyer, our attorneys have made a career out of providing superior defense services to individuals charged with driving under the influence in Orange County. Regardless of your specific charge, we can fight your charges and help you move past this difficult time. Our many years of DUI defense practice have consistently given us the opportunity to become familiar with prosecutors, judges, and other court officials in Orange County. You can count on our attorneys to be your pillar of strength during this difficult time.
When you retain the Orange County DUI Defense Lawyer, you can rest assured that we’ll handle your case personally and will not outsource services from an appearance attorney or an outside law firm. Our goal is to ensure that our clients are confident that we’ll handle their cases with the uniqueness and carefulness it deserves. Each client is given their attorney’s personal phone number, office phone number, and email to ensure that he/she can get in touch should an issue arise outside of regular business hour. What’s more, our clients can reach to us outside the “9 to 5” hours. We’re available 24/7/365.
We offer a free initial consultation to individuals accused of DUI in Orange County. Call us at 714-820-9592 to schedule yours.
Sabrina Darwish grew up in Southern California and her journey towards criminal justice began when she obtained her law degree from Loyola Law school in Los Angeles. Once she was sworn in as an attorney, she realized her duty to fight for those who struggle to have their voices heard. Sabrina began her legal career in public service as a deputy public defender in Riverside County. She later moved to private practice in Orange County after gaining a wealth of experience at the Public Defender’s Office. With an office in Santa Ana, she is centrally located in Orange County.
For over 10 years, Attorney Sabrina Darwish has been representing Orange County residents in their criminal matters. She has defended thousands of clients with countless wins along the way— from dismissals during negotiations to acquittals at trial.
Sabrina employs all her top skills to highlight your best qualities to the prosecution so they may see you as more than a case file. Sabrina is not only passionate and caring but extremely knowledgeable. She understands all the inner workings of the Orange County courts and has the expertise to navigate all the complex statutes and case law. Her familiarity with the courts and her personal relationships with prosecutors and judges have earned her a well-respected reputation in Orange County.
At Orange County DUI Defense Lawyer, we strive to maintain an uncommon commitment to excellence in every DUI case we tackle. Our legal team practices DUI defense proactively using our education, resources, and experience to align our well-rounded approach to legal service with your objectives. Our practice is marked by efficient service, unwavering quality, and personalized representation. Our goal is to incorporate these qualities into different aspects of our law firm. We take great pride in excellence and reject complacency by all means possible. When you retain our law firm, you can be assured that we’ll provide the caliber of legal service you expect and deserve. You need results – we know how to win and get results!
Orange County DUI Defense Lawyer is founded on the desire to defend individuals charged with DUI in Orange County and across Southern California. Our attorneys take pride in the knowledge and skills they have gained defending countless clients charged with DUI. We will defend your rights, your freedom, and your reputation. We use an experienced and aggressive approach to review charges and look for areas of defense. We’re focused on results and that’s why our attorneys spend ample time defending each client. We help you make informed decisions by explaining the legal issues surrounding your case and ensuring you know what options are available to fight the charges. We keep the result you want in mind from start to finish.
Every client and every case that we accept is a top priority. Over the years, we’ve learned that our ability to grow as a law firm greatly depends on our ability to earn the trust of clients. For this reason, our attorneys aggressively defend clients and aim to form long-term relationships that will have great benefits now and in the future. We’re committed to focusing on the needs of our clients. Whether we’re handling a large or small case, we treat each case that we accept as unique and important and each individual is significant. When you retain our legal team, we will not take the easy way out and will fully engage you from start to finish. We offer free phone consultations and meet personally with our clients to start working towards results.
Unlike other types of criminal offenses that involve a one-step process where the case is handled in court, DUI is a complex and technical crime that involves two distinct steps. The roller-coaster ride of a DUI case begins when a person is arrested for suspicion of drunk driving. The officer will then take you in for a chemical test to verify your blood alcohol concentration (BAC). If the test results show a BAC of .08 or greater, the officer will note that a charge of driving with a BAC above .08 will be added. If you refuse to submit to a blood or breath test, your license could be suspended for up to 1 year and a Refusal allegation will be added to your charges.
You’ll then be booked and (depending on your criminal history and circumstances of your case) released on bail. A report will be prepared and submitted to the prosecutor who will charge you with DUI or decline to file charges.
In addition to the criminal aspect of DUI, there are administrative actions and the DMV hearing separate from any jury trial that may come later. After an arrest, your driver’s license will immediately be confiscated by the arresting officer and you’ll then be issued a pink, 30-day license. After that, you only have 10 actual days (not business days) to file for a DMV hearing and fight the automatic suspension of your license. If you request a hearing within the stipulated time, the suspension of your license will be delayed until the outcome of the hearing is determined. If you fail to do so, your license will be automatically suspended for 4 months and you’ll lose the right to such a hearing permanently. At Orange County DUI Defense Lawyer, we have been successful in preventing suspended licenses. We are familiar with the local DMV and its process and can easily request your DMV hearing for you.
Regardless of the outcome of your DMV hearing, if charges are filed against you, you’re still subject to the criminal court process.
DUI is a serious offense because it tends to put others at risk. However, the penalties of drunk driving can be complicated and may depend on factors two main factors: whether another person was injured or killed as a result of your driving under the influence and whether you have prior DUI convictions on your record. Most DUIs are prosecuted as misdemeanors, but they may be charged as a felony if you have 4 or more prior DUIs on your record or someone is injured as a result of your drunk driving.
The penalties for a first-time DUI offense include:
Penalties for a second DUI offense include:
Penalties for a third DUI offense is punishable include:
The penalties for a fourth or subsequent DUI offense include:
DUIs in California are “priorable offenses” and penalties get more serious with each successive DUI conviction within a 10-year period. You can also face civil charges if the DUI incident caused any injuries or property damage. Other driving crimes such as vehicular manslaughter, hit and run, DUI with a minor in the car, or DUI without a valid license or on a suspended license can result in sentencing enhancements.
I was arrested for a DUI last year, but Michael destroyed the prosecution's case against me and got it thrown out. I finally understand the difference between a lawyer and a law team. Thanks All.
I thought it was nearly impossible to challenge a DUI charge, but Orange County DUI defense lawyer saved my license and got the charges reduced. Couldn't be happier with the results.
MIchael and his staff got my DUI with drug possession charges dismissed for lack of sufficient evidence and fought tirelessly to do so. Their communication is what I hold most important because it kept me at ease during the whole trial. Strong law firm and recommended.
I've had the pleasure of working with this team for quite a few years. They are talented, brilliant, trusted, and caring attorneys who fight diligently for their clients and get excellent results. Highly recommended.
OC County DUI Defense Lawyers made navigating the judicial system an easy process. I needed to transfer the case from CA to UT which seemed extremely tough based on other attorneys I met with especially since we also had to deal with the DMV. The case was handled smoothly and with top professional guidance throughout. The only regret I have is not contacting them sooner.
They are the best, we met for over an hour to talk about my case, they walked me through the next steps and made sure I was calm and assured throughout the case. Needless to say, the results were fantastic and I'm here now saying my praises.
While police usually think that a driver must be under the influence if driving poorly or erratically, that is not always the case. Speeding, weaving and other traffic violations are often caused by sober drivers who are distracted or inattentive. The prosecutor will consider your driving pattern and the arresting officer may testify that you were driving in a manner consistent with DUI. An experienced DUI attorney can fight DUI charges by arguing that you were sober and the driving pattern is not a reliable predictor of DUI.
The arresting officer and prosecutor heavily rely on FSTs and almost always testify that the defendant performed poorly without mentioning the elements that you passed. If part of the prosecution’s evidence includes the results of FSTs, you and your attorney may challenge the results. Even the most reliable FSTs aren’t accurate indicators of impairment. In addition, there are factors that may affect balance and coordination and cause you to fail the FSTs, including poor lighting, fatigue, your natural physical coordination, having flat feet, your clothing, officer-induced intimidation, bad weather conditions, uneven surface conditions, your clothing, awkward footwear, and a variety of other issues. At Orange County DUI Defense Lawyer, we use this defense strategy to ensure that the prosecutor does not use the results of FSTs against you in your DUI case.
In California DUI investigations, the defendant’s physical appearance plays a big role in claiming that you were intoxicated. Police often rely on objective symptoms such as slurred speech, wobbly walking pattern, red or watery eyes, or the strong odor of alcohol on your breath to decide if someone they’ve stopped likely intoxicated. Whether or not this description is accurate, having these signs does not prove you were under the influence. Innocent explanations such as allergies, fatigue, illness, physical injury, eye irritation, or a cold can explain the signs and symptoms associated with intoxication.
Residual mouth alcohol can throw off the PAS test and show high BAC reading. The breath testing devices are designed to test a sample of breath from your deep lung tissue (alveolar air). So instead of capturing alcohol in your alveoli air, they can capture mouth alcohol if you used chewing tobacco, used a mouthwash containing alcohol, suffer from acid reflux, heartburn, or GERD, used certain medication, or took alcohol-soaked food. These can trigger a BAC reading of .08 or more. Also, the officer must continuously observe you for 15 minutes before administering a breath test to ensure you for not burp, belch, or regurgitate and you don’t put anything in containing alcohol in your mouth. If the officer fails to observe you continuously for 15 minutes may call into question your breath tests results and even the entire DUI investigation.
California Code of Regulations Title 17 sets forth the requirement for collecting, storing, and analyzing DUI blood and breath tests. If the arresting officer failed to follow the guidelines, the results could be tainted and declared invalid. To comply with these regulations, the personnel conducting the tests must be properly trained, the device use must be properly calibrated and maintained, blood samples should be handled and store properly according to strict regulations. An experienced DUI attorney can use any violation to call the entire investigation into question and have the results excluded from evidence.
After consumption, alcohol takes a certain amount of time - between 1 hour to 3 hours- to absorb into your system and reach peak levels. So if you just finished drinking and the gets behind the wheel for a short drive and are arrested for DUI, the chemical test conducted at the police station may show a higher BAC than what you had while actually driving. Your BAC will continue to rise and if you’re not tested after a lengthy period of DUI investigation, the results of the chemical test could be wrong. What matters is your BAC level at the time you drove and this may form the basis of a defense to DUI charges.
At Orange County DUI Defense Lawyer, we know that medical conditions such as hypoglycemia and diabetes as well as fasting and certain popular diets such as Atkins or Paleo can throw off the BAC results, forming the basis of a successful defense to DUI charges. Our bodies tend to get fuel from dietary carbohydrates. But there are certain conditions that force the body to get fuel by breaking down stored fats. During the process, the liver produces an excessive amount of toxic byproducts known as “ketones,” which are chemically similar to and mimic the effect of isopropyl alcohol. Some ketones can be excreted in the breath and can easily trick breath testing devices, leading to a falsely high BAC reading and an unfair DUI charge.
Other defense strategies that we can use to fight your DUI charges include:
Irrespective of the type of DUI charge you’re facing, any of these defenses could be raised to your case. We have an understanding of the law and can assess the specifics of your case to decide the best defense strategies that will maximize your chances of winning the case. Remember, building a solid defense when faced with a DUI charge usually depends on when it is prepared. For this reason, it’s important to seek experienced DUI legal counsel immediately after your arrest.
With a team of skilled and experienced DUI attorneys at your side, you can rest assured that every angle and every aspect of your DUI cases will be covered in defending you in court. At Orange County DUI Defense Lawyer, we tackle all kinds of California DUI cases from misdemeanor drunk driving to felony DUI. We know the best legal strategies to fight the charges and avoid jail time as well as other harsh penalties that come with a DUI conviction. Our lawyers will take your case seriously and will point out how a seemingly uphill battle can be resolved by targeting certain key errors or failures. Once you retain our legal service, our main aim will be to secure your freedom and well-being.
When we handle DUI cases in Orange County, we investigate the background and training of the arresting officer and the chemical testing personnel, examine and inspect equipment used in chemical testing (including their upkeep and maintenance), and reanalyze blood samples. We also cross-examine officers at DMV hearings to ensure that all regulations were adhered to and also use this as an opportunity to find out the evidence that the prosecutor has against you. We will review your case beginning with the events that led up to the arrest, what happened after the traffic stop, and what followed. We’ll challenge every piece of evidence the prosecution plans to use against you. Getting a DUI does not mean you’re guilty. Certain circumstances or defenses may entitle you to a suppression of evidence, reduced charge or penalty, or dismissal of the charges. There may have been an error with the chemical testing procedure, the law enforcement officer may not have had probable cause to pull you over, or there may be credible witnesses who can say you were not impaired or intoxicated. The diligent investigation into the details of each unique case we accept lays the groundwork for a strong defense aimed at clearing your name.
Under California law, driving under the influence doesn’t just refer to drunk driving. DUI simply means having an impaired ability to drive to an extent that you no longer exercise the caution that an...Read more
Traffic accidents caused by underage driving, distracted driving, and the inexperience of a driver are a leading cause of death among young adults and teenagers. In this regard, California applies a...Read more
Commercial drivers convicted of DUI may risk criminal DUI charges as well as the loss of employment. The BAC level for commercial drivers in California is much lower and most companies have a...Read more
In certain circumstances, the penalties for a DUI will be increased if it involved aggravating behavior. A person who drives under the influence with a child passenger in the car will face enhanced...Read more
Even if you’re a resident of California and are arrested for a DUI in California, you’ll still have to go through the same DUI process and face California DUI penalties as anyone else. The fact that...Read more
Driving under the influence and causing bodily injury to a third party is a violation of California Vehicle Code § 23153 and you may be charged with DUI causing injury. For you to be convicted of this...Read more
Vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated occurs when a driver who is under the influence engages in some negligent behavior while driving and causes the death of another person- be it a passenger, a...Read more
Watson murder is simply a California DUI murder charge under California Penal Code Section 187. It’s a second-degree murder charge filed if an individual kills another person while driving under the...Read more
Being charged with a DUI in Orange County is a stressful experience. Even so, you don’t have to sit and accept having your property, freedom, and mobility restricted or seized, especially if further investigation might show improper DUI arrest, compromised equipment, or improper investigative procedure. The experienced Orange County Defense Lawyers can help you retain your rights and freedom.
Consulting with an experienced DUI attorney immediately after the arrest is critical as it allows the attorney to evaluate your case and gather the evidence to challenge the prosecution’s case. In addition to examining all relevant evidence in your DUI case, our lawyers will subpoena any related video footage connected to your case and review every situation based on its facts. We can represent you in your DMV hearing, prepare and file any pre-trial motions, actively engage in plea negotiations with the prosecution, and aggressively defend you in a trial. When it comes to investigating your case and fighting the charges against you, we leave no stone unturned.