What is the sentence for driving under the influence with a prior conviction in California?

Prior coviction

If you are convicted of misdemeanor driving under the influence in violation of section 23152 of the California Vehicle Code, and have a prior conviction within 10 years for that offense; or a prior conviction of section 23153, which is driving under the influence causing an injury accident, as either a felony or misdemeanor; or a prior conviction of section 23103, within the meaning of section 23103.5, commonly referred to as a wet reckless driving; the penalties for the current driving under the influence offense under section 23152 are increased over those of a first time conviction.

Police Motorcycle

Most convicted of a dui with a prior are placed on informal probation for 60 months, meaning you are supervised by the court and not a probation officer. The following are mandatory terms and conditions of that probation.

  1. The imposition of a jail sentence of 10 days to 1 year, or 96 hours to one year; if the minimum alternative sentence of 96 hours is imposed, it is to be served in two sessions, each being a continuous 48 hours; the 48 hour sessions need not be served consecutively, nor in a manner that would inter with employment;1  and
  2. Pay a fine of at least $390 and no more than $1000; and
  3. A two year driver’s license suspension; under certain specified conditions DMV will issue a restricted license to drive to and from work, during the course of work, and to an alcohol program after the completion of 12 months of the suspension, or after 90 days of the suspension if no drugs were involved and the offense is only for under the influence of alcohol;2  and
  4. Enroll in and complete an alcohol program.3

If any terms or conditions are violated the court is required to revoke probation and may impose sentence which could include additional time in custody or the court could reinstate probation with new terms and conditions imposed which may include additional jail time.4

There are other mandatory terms and conditions under section 23600 of the California Vehicle Code:

    Car
  1. Not drive with any alcohol in your system.
  2. Not refuse to take alcohol test if ask to by a law enforcement officer.
  3. Not violate any criminal law.
  4. Not drive without a valid driver’s license.

In the unusual case where probation is not imposed, the sentence is as follows,

    Cops
  1. A jail sentence of at least 90 days, and up to a 1 year in a county jail; and
  2. A fine of no less than $390, nor more than $1000.5
  3. A driver’s license suspension of 2 years subject to a restricted license after completing 12 months of the suspension period, or 90 days if no drugs were involved, and the person was only under the influence of alcohol.6




1 Section 23542(a)(1) of the California Vehicle Code
2 Section 13352(a)(3) of the California Vehicle Code
3 Section 23542(b) of the California Vehicle Code
4 Section 23602 of the California Vehicle Code
5 Section 23530(a) of the California Vehicle Code
6 Section 13352(a)(3) of the California Penal Code