I am confused, is a DUI 23152 charge a misdemeanor or felony?

San Fernando Court for Criminal cases

Question:  I am confused. Is a DUI  under VC 23152 charge a misdemeanor or felony?  I was arrested for a DUI in San Fernando, CA and then convicted of the DUI in the San Fernando court a while later back in 2010.

I am now in the process of applying for new jobs.  On one application it asks if I have ever been convicted of a felony.  Do I have to answer yes to that?  Or is a DUI a misdemeanor, in which case I do not have to fill it in.

I prefer not to have to write yes to that question on the application, but don’t want to misstate the truth on the application and have it come back to bite me later.  Is there anything else I can do about this?  Thanks for your help

Answer: It depends on the circumstances in your case. Generally speaking, if it’s a first or second DUI and there was no one injured (for example, in a car accident), then generally they are charged as Misdemeanors. If it’s a 4th DUI or higher, or there was an injury involved, it may be charged as a felony.

As far as what you can do about it, I would be happy to discuss that with you in more detail.  In short, you may be eligible to petition the court to get the conviction withdrawn and subsequently dismissed.  Many refer to this as an expungement.  This can be very helpful when applying for a job.  In many circumstances, you do not have to list a conviction on an application if you have successfully had it dismissed by petitioning the court.

Whether a dismissal of a conviction for a DUI is approved is discretionary by the Judge, but I have been very successful in getting DUI convictions withdrawn and subsequently dismissed for clients regularly.   Further, I am very familiar with the prosecutors and Judges in San Fernando Court.

In regards to your conviction, were you put on 3 years of probation at the time of your conviction?  If so, did you satisfy all the terms of your probation, and probation has since been terminated?  Did you have any subsequent criminal charges while you were on probation that caused probation to be revoked at any time?

If you are still confused about what you were charged with or if you would like to move forward with the dismissal (a.k.a. expungment) process,  feel free to call me at (818) 336-1384 to discuss further.


Philip Hache
San Fernando Valley DUI Attorney