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How Long Will a DUI Stay on My Record in California?


If you were convicted of a DUI in California, you’re likely already familiar with the penalties, such as jail time, fines, and probation. But even after you’ve done everything the court requested regarding your sentence, you’ll still notice some lingering effects of your DUI.

In particular, the conviction will remain on your criminal record long after you’ve finished your sentencing requirements. This can make it difficult to get a job, find housing, or be approved by any establishment that runs a background check. If you’re tired of paying the price for your DUI years after your arrest, you might wonder how long this will continue. Consider talking to a California DUI defense lawyer to find out how to reduce this conviction’s impact on your life.

How Long Does a DUI Stay on a Criminal Record?

If you’re hoping for a day when your DUI will no longer show up on your criminal record, you may be disappointed to find that DUI convictions are permanent. This means your DUI will remain on your criminal record indefinitely, so it’s possible that you could still have trouble finding housing or employment in 10 or 20 years.

But the good news is that you can take steps to get your conviction removed from your criminal record by pursuing expungement. You should qualify for this as long as you have completed your sentencing requirements, are done with probation, and have not been arrested for a crime since your DUI. Expungement will remove your conviction from your record, meaning background checks will come back clear as long as your DUI was your only conviction.

One detail to know is that while expungement will remove the DUI from your criminal record, it will still count as your first offense if you’re arrested for DUI again in the next ten years. This means if you’re charged with DUI again in five years, it will be considered your second offense and will enact harsher penalties.

As long as you stay out of legal trouble after your first DUI, expungement will greatly benefit you by clearing your record. If you’re interested in this legal option, contact a criminal defense lawyer to determine if you’re eligible.

How Long Does a DUI Stay on a Driving Record?

Your criminal record isn’t the only record that affects you. Your driving record is also important, since it can help determine your insurance rates and your eligibility to get a job that involves driving. So, if you’re worried about how long your DUI will affect your driving record, it’s helpful to know that the answer is ten years.

This means that for ten years after your DUI offense, your insurance rates will likely be higher than average. In addition, police officers and DMV employees can see the DUI on your driving record for ten years and factor it in when making decisions regarding your driving privileges.

You might be thinking about getting your DUI expunged, but that will only clear your criminal record. You cannot get your driving record expunged, so expect your DUI to remain on it for the full ten years.

How Can You Get a DUI Removed from Your Record?

While it would be nice to clear your driving record and get lower insurance rates, it’s likely your criminal record that has the biggest impact on your life after a DUI. So, it may be worth getting your DUI conviction expunged. If the DUI is your only criminal conviction, removing it from your record can significantly affect your quality of life since you’ll be eligible for far more jobs and housing options when your record is clean.

If you’re ready for your DUI to be removed from your criminal record, contact a lawyer to initiate the expungement process. You’ll need to ensure you’re eligible and then file the correct forms with the court, which can be confusing if you’re unsure what to expect from the expungement procedure. Fortunately, an experienced attorney can handle this process on your behalf so you can rest assured that it’s completed correctly. Call Patrick Silva, Attorneys at Law at 909-500-4819 or contact us online to learn more about expunging your California DUI.

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