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54+ Five-Star  Google Reviews

“Great Attorney! Hands down affordable payments. He was quick and responsive and very informative, got my charge which I would be facing jail time reduced to reckless driving and a fine...”

5.0
J.S.

54+ Five-Star  Google Reviews

“I hired Zachary after I found myself charged with a felony. He put me at ease right away and during the whole process he explained each step to where I understood everything and was always available for any questions I had. ”

5.0
S.N.

54+ Five-Star  Google Reviews

“Attorney Zachary is a brilliant attorney, I highly recommend his company to resolve any legal/criminal matter satisfactorily. He still continue to work on my case to tie some loose ends. He is intelligent , prompt and a problem solver. I thank him a million times to protect my dignity and reputation.”

5.0
D.G.

54+ Five-Star  Google Reviews

“I have had the pleasure of working with Mr. Divelbiss in the past and know him to be a hard working professional. His attention to detail and care for his clients set him apart from the rest!”

5.0
Joshua Black, Attorney

54+ Five-Star  Google Reviews

“Attorney Divelbiss is a hard worker and will advocate for his clients with an attention to detail that you don't see very often these days.”

5.0
Brandon White, Attorney

54+ Five-Star  Google Reviews

“Attorney Divelbiss is bright, hard-working, and well-versed in criminal law. His legal writing is superb, and his commitment to his clients is outstanding. He will fight for you and offer you the best defense possible. Additionally, he is a pleasure to work with. I fully endorse this lawyer.”

5.0
Josephine Hallam, Attorney

54+ Five-Star  Google Reviews

“Mr. Divelbiss and I worked in the same office, although we were at different law firms. He was eager to learn and developed a reputation for honesty and zealous advocacy.”

5.0
Kristopher Califano, Attorney

54+ Five-Star  Google Reviews

“Mr. Divelbiss is a GREAT attorney, very honest and reliable. He takes his times with every client and answers all questions and concerns. Is been a pleasure working with Mr. Divelbiss and he serves his clients very well!”

5.0
Allen Hsu, Attorney

You ONLY Have 7 DAYS to Request A DMV Hearing in AZ

Phoenix Criminal Defense Attorney

No one enjoys getting pulled over by the police, but if you’ve had a few drinks, it may just be the first of an unpleasant series of consequences that can affect you for years to come. The state of Arizona has some of the most strict DUI laws in the nation. Even a first-time DUI arrest can lead to jail time if you’re convicted, and your criminal record can haunt you for the rest of your life. If you have been arrested for DUI in Phoenix, AZ, the DUI and criminal defense lawyers at Future First Criminal Law can provide you with tough and aggressive representation.

WHAT IS A DUI IN PHOENIX?

DUI is the acronym that most states use for ‘Driving Under the Influence’ – But what is a DUI? If someone is found to be operating a vehicle with a blood alcohol content (BAC) over .08% — which is the legal limit in Arizona.

If you have been arrested or charged with a DUI in Phoenix, it is important to remember NOT to talk to police or investigators before talking to a lawyer. No matter what situation you may find yourself in, we can help. Whether you are facing DUI charges or any other criminal charges, Future First Criminal Law has the experience necessary to help you fight for your rights.

WHAT IS A DUI? A PHOENIX DUI LAWYER HAS THE ANSWERS

If you are facing DUI charges in Phoenix or the surrounding area, one of the first questions you may be asking yourself is whether or not you should hire an attorney. The short answer is yes — you should at least speak with a DUI lawyer as soon as you possibly can. Hiring an attorney is a right granted to us by the United States Constitution and is a right that anyone charged with a crime should take advantage of.

An experienced Phoenix, Arizona DUI lawyer will be able to look at the charges against you and explain them in a way that makes sense. They will explain exactly what a DUI is and exactly what your charges could mean if you are convicted.

If you find yourself charged and convicted of DUI, it will have a long-lasting impact on your life and your future. It could impact your relationships, your job, your ability to drive, and ultimately your freedom. Working with an attorney on your DUI case will help give you the best possible chance at lessening this impact on your life.

THE ELEMENTS OF A DUI IN ARIZONA

For the prosecution to have a DUI case against you, they must prove that your blood alcohol content (BAC) exceeded the legal limit and that you were in actual physical control of your vehicle at the time of the arrest. The police are responsible for gathering the evidence to make your conviction possible. If the police make a mistake or go outside of protocol, a good defense lawyer can use the investigative errors to weaken the case against you or get it dismissed.

Google54+ Five-Star Google Reviews

“Attorney Divelbiss is a hard worker and will advocate for his clients with an attention to detail that you don't see very often these days.”

5.0
Brandon White, Attorney

Experienced DUI/DWI Lawyer

Our mission is to help keep good people out of jail by balancing the criminal justice playing field so that each of our clients has a fighting chance to achieve realistic outcomes for their legal situations. *Call 602-932-6204 for quick DUI/DWI guidance.

STAGES OF A DUI/DWI INVESTIGATION IN ARIZONA

Probable Cause for the Stop

For a DUI investigation to be viable, the police must have a legally justifiable reason to stop you. Here are a few of the legally acceptable reasons to stop a suspected drunk driver:

  • The driver has committed a traffic violation
  • The driving pattern is consistent with intoxication
  • The vehicle was involved in an accident
  • The officer suspects the driver or vehicle was involved in an independent crime
  • The driver/vehicle was stopped at an authorized DUI checkpoint
  • The officer received a tip from a civilian that you are suspected of drunk driving

Physical Indicators in DUI Investigations

Most of us can recognize signs of drunkenness in others, but police officers must articulate these subtle tells in the charging documents. Like all law enforcement officers in the state of Arizona, Glendale police officers receive specific training in identifying drunken behavior. The arresting officer must be able to testify about the physical indicators that they witnessed during the arrest. These may include all or some of the following:

  • Bloodshot eyes
  • Slurred speech
  • Emitting the odor of an alcoholic beverage
  • Unsteady stance or gait
  • Slurred speech
  • Red, flushed face
  • Aggressive or belligerent behavior

VOLUNTARY ROADSIDE EXERCISES

While there have been several roadside exercises developed to detect drunk driving, police officers in the state of Arizona are trained to administer three: the walk and turn, the one-leg stand, and horizontal gaze nystagmus. Before the officers ask you to perform these tests, they should locate a flat, well-lit surface that’s safe from traffic and clear of debris. The officer should also demonstrate the exercises before asking you to do so.

Walk-and-Turn – The subject takes nine heel-to-toe steps, pivots, and takes nine steps back. The officer will be watching to see if the subject leaves gaps between steps, holds their arms out to the side to maintain balance, or makes a mistake on their count.

One-Leg-Stand – The subject will raise either foot six inches off of the ground and hold it while they count to 30, using a “one-one-thousand, two-one-thousand, three-one-thousand count.” The officer will watch to see if the subject drops their foot to the ground, holds their hands out to maintain balance, miscounts, or rushes their count.

Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus – The subject will follow the tip of a pen or finger with their eyes. The test tracks the smooth pursuit of the eye. As the individual becomes more intoxicated, there is an involuntary flutter that occurs in the eyes. The officer will look at the bouncing of the eyes as they follow the tip of the pen.

Voluntary roadside exercises are just that—voluntary. A police officer cannot make an arrest based solely on a refusal. On the other hand, Glendale-area police officers often video-record their DUI investigations for courtroom presentation. Refusing roadside exercises may not keep you from being arrested, but it does prevent your poor performance from being played back for a jury when the case goes to trial.

ARIZONA IMPLIED CONSENT LAW

Arizona has an implied consent law, which means that in order to receive your driver’s license, you must agree to submit to a blood, breath, or urine BAC chemical test upon demand. If you refuse, your license will be suspended for the refusal, but you also face suspension if your chemical test BAC exceeds .08.

PENALTIES FOR AN ARIZONA DUI CONVICTION

Standard DUI(BAC higher than .08%)

1st Offense

  • Jail Time: 24 hours to 10 days
  • License Suspension: 90 days to 1 year
  • Penalties and Fines: At least $250
  • Interlock ignition device mandatory

2nd Offense

  • Jail Time: 30 to 90 days
  • License Suspension: 90 days to 1 year
  • Penalties and Fines: At least $500
  • Interlock ignition device mandatory

3rd Offense

  • Jail Time: At least 4 months
  • License Suspension: 1 year
  • Penalties and Fines: At least $750
  • Interlock ignition device mandatory

Extreme DUI(BAC higher than .15%)

1st Offense

  • Jail Time: 30 days
  • License Suspension: 90 days
  • Penalties and Fines: Upwards of $2,780
  • Interlock ignition device mandatory

2nd Offense

  • Jail Time: 30 days
  • License Suspension: 90 days
  • Penalties and Fines: Upwards of $2,780
  • Interlock ignition device mandatory

Super Extreme DUI(BAC higher than .20%)

1st Offense

  • Jail Time: 45 days
  • License Suspension: 90 days
  • Penalties and Fines: Upwards of $3,240
  • Interlock ignition device mandatory

2nd Offense

  • Jail Time: 45 days
  • License Suspension: 90 days
  • Penalties and Fines: Upwards of $3,240
  • Interlock ignition device mandatory

Experienced DUI/DWI Lawyer

ARIZONA DUI DEFENSE

Most of the evidence against a DUI defendant in Arizona is collected during the time of the arrest, which most frequently happens during a traffic stop. If someone is suspected of driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, they will likely be subject to a blood alcohol concentration or drug content (BADC) test. As a driver in Arizona, you automatically give consent for the administration of this test simply by being behind the wheel of a vehicle. The BADC test will be administered using breath, blood, or urine samples, and the results will determine whether the party will be charged with a DUI and — if so — what type.

In Arizona, an alcohol concentration level above 0.08% will trigger a DUI charge. For those driving commercial vehicles requiring a commercial driving license, the threshold is even lower at 0.04%. In addition, Arizona has a zero-tolerance policy for those who are under the age of 21. In this case, the presence of any alcohol at all is grounds for a DUI arrest.

The penalties for a DUI are steep in Arizona. First, a DUI conviction comes with an automatic suspension of the driver’s license. First offenses will receive a 3-month driver’s license suspension, and a second offense within 84 months (7 years) will result in license revocation.

Another feature that makes Arizona’s DUI penalties particularly steep is that even first offenses involve jail time and hefty fines. A first offense comes with a minimum 10-day jail sentence, substance abuse counseling, and a $1,250 fine. Second or subsequent offenses face even harsher penalties. These offenses are accompanied by a minimum 90-day jail sentence, substance abuse counseling, community service requirements, and a $3,000 fine. For all offenders, reinstatement of the driver’s license will likely require alcohol education program enrollment and an ignition interlock device installed on the vehicle.

POSSIBLE ARIZONA DUI DEFENSE STRATEGIES

Most of the evidence for a DUI charge is collected at the scene of the traffic stop, but there are several ways that an experienced attorney can mount an Arizona DUI defense.

A clear defense is to question the accuracy of the BADC test and the legitimacy of its administration. Successful defenses against DUI charges have included proving that the BADC test has contamination, that the officer administering the test waited too long to do so (which could have caused BAC to rise in the interim), or that the test sample was inaccurately labeled or handled. There are also extenuating circumstances involving the person facing the DUI charge. Some medications impact BADC tests, and the conditions under which a person takes a field sobriety test might alter their performance.

Additional possible defenses against a DUI include arguing that the arresting officer did not have probable cause to make the traffic stop in the first place or demonstrating that the arrested party did not have control of the vehicle at the time of the arrest. This latter argument most often occurs when the arrested party was physically in a vehicle but not actively driving it at the time.

All of these details can be used to bring a defense against a DUI charge.

SHOULD I HIRE A PHOENIX DUI LAWYER?

If you are facing DUI charges in Phoenix, it is always in your best interest to speak with an experienced DUI lawyer regarding your options before speaking with prosecutors or making a plea deal. Contacting a Phoenix DUI attorney right away will help give you the best possible chance of a favorable outcome.

If you think there was a possibility that your rights have been violated in the process of your DUI arrest, or even if you need someone to give you an honest assessment of your case and what you can expect from your charges, give us a call — we’re here to help.

While it may seem like a straightforward charge, there are some complexities to the Arizona DUI law that make having an Arizona DUI defense lawyer an advantage. In addition to the regular DUI charge (for those with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) above 0.08%), there is also an “Extreme DUI” charge – This charge is reserved for those who have a BAC above 0.15%. The penalties for these Extreme DUI charges are even stiffer, with first offenders facing a minimum of 90 days in jail and $2,500 in fines, while subsequent offenses result in 120-day jail sentences and $3,250 in fines.

Finally, Arizona has a third DUI category called “Aggravated DUI.” These charges apply to someone who receives a DUI while their license is suspended or revoked, received a third DUI within 84 months, received a DUI charge with a person under the age of 15 in the vehicle, or refused a BADC test while driving with a required interlock ignition device. This penalty comes with two years of prison time in addition to the other penalties that would extend to the offense.

As you can see, the complexities of the Arizona DUI law mean that there are many layers to the charge and the subsequent penalties. Having an experienced lawyer can make navigating these layers more straightforward.

PHOENIX, ARIZONA CRIMINAL & DUI LAWYER NEAR YOU

Future First Criminal Law is a top-rated Phoenix, Arizona law firm with a practice dedicated to Criminal and DUI Defense – We represent clients throughout the Phoenix-Metro area.

If you need help with DUI defense or defending any other criminal charges, you need a Phoenix lawyer who will fight for your rights.

Understandably, you want to get this behind you, but don’t make the mistake of defending yourself or even pleading guilty to the charges. A DUI conviction will have long-lasting consequences, and you need to be aware of what they will be before making any decisions. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation and to discuss your case.

Frequently Asked Questions

In Arizona, if you refuse a breathalyzer test after you’ve been pulled over, your license will be automatically suspended for at least a year. Even if you were later found innocent, you’d lose your license by simply refusing the test.

If you are convicted of DUI in Arizona, your license will be suspended for anywhere from 90 days to 1 year. After the first 30 days of the license suspension, there may be an opportunity to apply for a “restricted license,” granting limited access to driving privileges for activities like grocery shopping, medical appointments, and work.

Yes. Even a first-time DUI charge will result in a minimum of 10 days in jail (all of which can be suspended except for 24 hours) to a maximum of 6 months. The DUI penalties and lengths of jail sentences worsen with each subsequent offense.

If you’ve been arrested and charged for a DUI in Arizona, your license will immediately be suspended. For a first-time offense, the maximum penalty is a 90 suspension. However, subsequent offenses or a refusal to take a breathalyzer will result in suspension for up to 1 year.

If you plead guilty, your sentence will NOT be any lesser than if you were found guilty of DUI at a later date. There’s generally no practical reason for a defendant to plead guilty. Your best bet is to contact a Phoenix DUI lawyer for guidance and advice — Your lawyer can work with you to get the best possible outcome for your case. That could mean a reduction in charges or having the case completely dismissed.

A blood alcohol content (BAC) over .08% is the legal limit in Arizona. If a driver is found over the limit, they will likely be arrested for Driving Under the Influence (DUI). In cases where the BAC exceeds .15% or .20%, these can be charged as an “extreme DUI” or “super extreme DUI,” accordingly, which involves much harsher penalties.

There are two types of records a DUI will impact. The first is your record with the Motor Vehicle Department (MVD). This is the driving record where your demerit points (8 of them) will show up; insurance companies will see this and increase your insurance premiums accordingly. A DUI will fall off your MVD record in 5 years. The second type of record is a criminal justice record. A DUI can stay on your criminal record for life, showing up when potential employers conduct criminal record checks and are made available for public access. If you meet the criteria, you can file an expungement request to have the charges erased from your record.

54+ Five-Star  Google Reviews

“Great Attorney! Hands down affordable payments. He was quick and responsive and very informative, got my charge which I would be facing jail time reduced to reckless driving and a fine...”

5.0
J.S.

54+ Five-Star  Google Reviews

“I hired Zachary after I found myself charged with a felony. He put me at ease right away and during the whole process he explained each step to where I understood everything and was always available for any questions I had. ”

5.0
S.N.

54+ Five-Star  Google Reviews

“Attorney Zachary is a brilliant attorney, I highly recommend his company to resolve any legal/criminal matter satisfactorily. He still continue to work on my case to tie some loose ends. He is intelligent , prompt and a problem solver. I thank him a million times to protect my dignity and reputation.”

5.0
D.G.

54+ Five-Star  Google Reviews

“I have had the pleasure of working with Mr. Divelbiss in the past and know him to be a hard working professional. His attention to detail and care for his clients set him apart from the rest!”

5.0
Joshua Black, Attorney

54+ Five-Star  Google Reviews

“Attorney Divelbiss is a hard worker and will advocate for his clients with an attention to detail that you don't see very often these days.”

5.0
Brandon White, Attorney

54+ Five-Star  Google Reviews

“Attorney Divelbiss is bright, hard-working, and well-versed in criminal law. His legal writing is superb, and his commitment to his clients is outstanding. He will fight for you and offer you the best defense possible. Additionally, he is a pleasure to work with. I fully endorse this lawyer.”

5.0
Josephine Hallam, Attorney

54+ Five-Star  Google Reviews

“Mr. Divelbiss and I worked in the same office, although we were at different law firms. He was eager to learn and developed a reputation for honesty and zealous advocacy.”

5.0
Kristopher Califano, Attorney

54+ Five-Star  Google Reviews

“Mr. Divelbiss is a GREAT attorney, very honest and reliable. He takes his times with every client and answers all questions and concerns. Is been a pleasure working with Mr. Divelbiss and he serves his clients very well!”

5.0
Allen Hsu, Attorney