What happens when you are convicted of a DUI with injury?

DUI with Injury

Question: What happens when you are convicted of a DUI with injury?  My boyfriend just got arrested for DUI with injury in Tarzana and his ticket says he has to go to court in Van Nuys Court.  Can the victim can sue him in civil court for money as well?

Answer:  DUI with injury can bring serious consequences depending on the a variable of factors, such as if he has any prior DUI’s, if he was on probation at the time of the accident, and how severe the accident and injury(s) are.  I would need to know some more factors about your boyfriends situation to give a better indication of his case.  If this is the first time he has ever been arrested, a first offense DUI with Injury is prosecuted under VC 23153.  VC 23153 is what is called a “wobbler” which means that it can be charged as a misdemeanor or a felony.  The penalties can include the following consequences:

If it is a first offense DUI, charged as a misdemeanor:

–  3-5 years probation
–  $390- $1,000 fine (plus penalty assessments which will increase the fine amount significantly
–  Alcohol course ranging from 3 months to 9 months
–  1  year drivers license suspension
–  Restitution to the injured parties (ie.  making sure the injured parties are not out of pocket for costs related to medical bills and property damage)
– Ignition Interlock Device
–  Potential Car Impound
–  plus other potential consequences

If it is a first offense DUI, charged as a felony:

–  All of the above, but can include a up to a 3 year state prison sentence.  Plus there can be additional prison sentence if Great Bodily Injury (and potential “strike” issues), and if more than one person is injured

*Note that there can be some variances depending on whether the sentence includes or does not include probation.

The above is a generalized description of what some of the potential consequences could be for a first offense DUI, when charged as a DUI with injury.  There are a lot of potential enhancements that can increase the potential penalties significantly.  There are also a lot of factors to consider in defending these cases.  For example, one of the elements of DUI with injury is that while driving, you broke a low or otherwise were driving negligently (other than being under the influence).  If for example you were driving on the freeway and someone rear-ended you which caused the accident, then that could be a defense to your case unless your negligent driving was a cause to the other party rear-ending your vehicle.

These cases, defenses, and potential penalties are extremely complex and a more specific assessment of your situation can be given over a consultation.  There are a lot of variables to consider which can change the responses drastically.

Feel free to call me at (818) 336-1384 to discuss your situation in more detail.  I will add some information about VC 23153 – DUI with Injury to the following page within the next couple days:  DUI with Injury Info

I do recommend that you call me as soon as possible though to discuss your case.  I handle DUI cases in Van Nuys all the time and have done so with successful results.


Philip Hache, Attorney At Law

DUI Defense attorney in Van Nuys, CA and throughout Los Angeles County