Unlike instate driver's license holders whose licenses are confiscated at the time of a driving-under-the-influence (DUI) arrest, out-of-state drivers who are arrested for drunk driving are allowed to keep their licenses (at least initially). This does not mean that out-of-state drivers are free and clear when it comes to the DUI charge. The DUI process for out-of-state drivers is basically the same; both a DMV case and a court case will be triggered. The California Department of Motor Vehicles may still take action to have out-of-state driver's license holders' driving privileges suspended or revoked in the state of California. A highly-skilled and diverse Napa DUI attorney can help drivers maintain their driving privileges both here and in their home states.
Interstate Driver's License Compact
While some individuals who hold an out-of-state license may not be worried about being charged with drunk-driving in California and losing California driving privileges, they should be. The court penalties that are imposed against those who hold out-of-state driver's licenses are the same as those for instate license holders. These drivers often have to face traveling back and forth between their home states and California for a pre-trail, trial, and other relevant matters. In addition, they also face incarceration in a California Jail.
Furthermore, because of the Interstate Driver's License Compact (IDLC), many out-of-state drivers also face charges in their home states. The IDLC is an agreement between certain states that provides for the sharing of information with one another pertaining to certain types of traffic violations, including drunk driving. All but six states participate in the IDLC and they are Georgia, Massachusetts, Michigan, Tennessee, Wisconsin, and Wyoming. Some of the states that are part of the IDLC do reciprocate actions that are taken in another state. For instance, if the state of California suspends your driving privileges (California driving privileges), then your home state will also suspend your driving privilege. Additionally, some issuing states will impose enhanced penalties that are imposed by California courts and the California DMV, and even require you to pay fines to them as well.
On the bright side of things, despite the IDLC agreement, communication between states is sometimes poor and in some instances, notification of a California DUI charge/conviction may go undetected by the home state. However, you can't count on it. The bottom line is that out-of-state driver's license holders have much to lose and face huge financial and personal consequences, perhaps even more than instate drivers. An experienced Napa DUI attorney can advise you as to whether or not the IDLC will have any affect on your driver's license and what to expect.
At the Napa DUI law firm, we have experience representing both out-of-state and instate driver's license holders charged with DUI. We can help you obtain the best possible outcome both here in California and in your home state. We offer online Napa DUI consultations. Contact us today for yours!