The Law- DUI with Injury to Another

Felony DUI

Penalties and Punishment for a DUI with Injury to Another

The Vehicle Code section that governs a DUI with injury to another is section 23153.  23153 is a “wobbler” which means that it can be charged as either a felony dui or a misdemeanor dui.  The decision how to charge the crime will be based on (a) the severity of the injuries to the victim, (b) the other circumstances of your arrest and (c) your criminal history.  So one of the first goals of your attorney is to get the DA to reduce the charge from a felony DUI to a misdemeanor DUI.

Misdemeanor Penalties:  The penalties for a violation of Vehicle Code section 23153 are:

  • Probation:  Three to five years of summary probation
  • Jail:  Five days to one year in county jail
  • Fines:  The base fine is $390 but by the time the court is finished, expect your fines to run in the $2,000 to $5,000 range.
  • Restitution:  You will have to pay the victims for their medical bills, repair bills, etc.  The laws can be harsh in this area.  For example, if the victim has medical insurance and that insurance covers his injuries, you still have to pay the victim–directly–the total amount of his bills.
  • DUI School:  DUI School is based on how many priors you have or how high your BAC was.  (Three to nine months for a first offense and eighteen to thirty months for a multiple offender.)  See DUI school section on penalties for first, second or multiple offense where this issue is addressed.
  • License Suspension:  You are looking at a one to three year driver’s license restriction.

Felony DUI Penalties under Vehicle Code 23153:

  • Prison:  Sixteen months to ten years in prison and an additional one to six year prison sentence, served consecutively.  The additional sentence will be based on how many people were injured and how serious their injuries were.
  • Potential Strike-  There is the possibility that a “strike” can be placed on your record pursuant to California’s Three Strikes Law.\
  • Fines:  Fines will run between $1,015 to $5,000
  • DUI School:  18 to 30 months.
  • Habitual Traffic Offender status for three years.
  • Restitution:  You will have to pay the victims for their damages.  See above.