What Happens When You are Arrested for California DUI with an Out-of-State License?

Posted By Thomas V. Wallin || 19-May-2011

California DUI As reported by the Visalia Times Delta, a Garland, Texas, man was arrested Sunday night after being suspected of driving under the influence of alcohol and causing a four-car collision in Orosi, according to Officer Scott Harris of the California Highway Patrol.

What happens in cases like this when the driver has an out-of-state license?

If you are arrested for driving under the influence (DUI) in California and your license was issued to you by another state, the police cannot take your driver's license. However, that does not mean that you are free and clear of the drunk driving charge. 

As a result of the Interstate Driver's License Compact (IDLC), drivers who are arrested for drunk driving in California may still suffer suspension or revocation of their driving privileges in their home states as well as in California.

The IDLC process differs by state. Some states will enhance any penalties imposed by the California DMV and  California courts and even require that the driver pay additional fines to them. Yet other states may only recognize or take action upon notification of a California DUI conviction in court.

In some cases, the home state will never find out about the DUI arrest because of errors and omissions in the notification process.  If the driver's home state fails to take action to rescind driving privileges, then the driver will still hold a valid driver's license. 

An experienced California DUI lawyer can advise out-of-state drivers whether the IDLC will affect their driving privileges and what they can expect.