Below is the second part of a two-part blog post continued from last week’s discussion about new DUI laws set to take effect over the next couple of years.
The world may or may not end in 2012, but the second upcoming change in DUI will authorize criminal courts to impose a 10-year revocation of driving privileges for a fourth DUI conviction within the “ten year DUI window.” Previously, a three-year revocation was mandatory on a third conviction, and courts were authorized to order a maximum of up to five years of license revocation. With the new law, the three-year mandatory revocation remains, and judges will soon have greater discretion to impose a stiffer (10 year!) license revocation penalty for a fourth DUI conviction. The court must consider certain “factors”, such asthe time elapsed between the convictions, the blood alcohol level (BAC) at issue, and the person’s risk to public safety in making its determination. Anyone slapped with a 10-year revocation under the new law can, after five years, apply for reinstatement, subject to certain conditions, such as not having been convicted of any other drug or alcohol-related offenses during the driver’s license revocation period.
The new 10-year revocation law (Veh. Code, § 23597) will take effect on January 1, 2012.
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