How to Remove a DUI From Your Driving Record in Arizona

How to Get a DUI Off Your Driving Record in Arizona

How to Get a DUI Off Your Driving Record in Arizona

Arizona is known for many things. One of which is the state’s stringent penalties regarding driving under the influence of alcohol.

Your best bet, of course, is to avoid a DUI charge altogether by not driving under the influence of alcohol. Still, if you do happen to find yourself facing a DUI conviction in Arizona, you’ll probably have lots of questions (not to mention heard your fair share of myths).

Common questions about DUIs include:

  • What penalties will you be facing?
  • How long will the DUI remain on your driving record?
  • How will it impact future employment prospects?

But perhaps your most pressing question is whether a DUI can be removed from a driving record in Arizona — and how.

Well, there’s good news and bad news. The bad news is that a DUI will likely remain on your record forever in Arizona. But the good news is that with the help of a DUI attorney experienced in navigating these kinds of charges, you may be able to get the charge ‘set aside.’

In today’s article, we’re breaking down the different types of DUIs, their penalties, and the best-case scenario when it comes to DUI convictions and your driving record.

Arizona DUI Penalties

There are three basic types of penalties in the state of Arizona for driving under the influence of alcohol — a standard DUI, an Extreme DUI, and an Aggravated DUI.

Standard DUI

In the state of Arizona, you will be considered to be intoxicated if your blood alcohol concentration (BAC) registers at .08% or higher. The law is even more stringent for commercial drivers, and it would only be necessary to have a .04% BAC to be deemed legally intoxicated. However, drivers under the age of 21 can be considered drunk if they have any detectable alcohol in their system whatsoever.

Several different charges can be levied against you if you are found to be in violation of the BAC content limit, the first of which is between one and ten days in jail for a first offense.

You can also be fined $1,250, and your license can be suspended for anywhere between 90 days to one year. An interlock ignition device must also be installed on your vehicle, which prevents you from driving while drunk. All these charges and penalties are increased for a second or third offense.

Extreme DUI

As the name implies, the Extreme DUI is a bit more severe, and it is levied against individuals who are found to have a BAC of .15% or higher in their system. The penalty for this is a fine of $2,500 and 30 days of jail time, as well as the requirement of outfitting your vehicle with the ignition interlock device. You will also be required to perform community service and to undergo alcohol education and screening.

Aggravated DUI

Aggravated DUI applies to those cases where an individual violates one of the following conditions:

  • Commits a DUI with an ignition interlock device in place
  • Is charged with DUI while a person under the age of 15 is in the vehicle
  • Commits three DUIs within 84 months
  • Is charged with another DUI while their license is suspended, revoked, or canceled.

The penalty for Aggravated DUI can be up to two years in prison and automatic revocation of your license for at least one year. You will also be required to perform community service, equip your car with an ignition interlock, and undergo alcohol screening and education as local authorities prescribe.

How Long Does an Arizona DUI Stay My Driving Record?

The state of Arizona does not have any provision for the complete expungement of a DUI charge from your driver’s license. However, the state does allow for a DUI on record in Arizona to be ‘set aside,’ which amounts to something similar.

Arizona DUI records will still show that you were convicted of a DUI charge, but they will also show that the charge was ‘set aside.’ If you are convicted of another DUI charge within seven years, your original DUI charge will still count, and you will be charged with a second (or third) conviction.

The most advantageous route for you is to avoid being convicted in the first place, which will probably call for a very skilled and knowledgeable attorney. You might also request that your attorney try to set aside the original conviction so it does not show on your DUI record in Arizona.

The short answer to the question posed in this paragraph is – a DUI conviction will be on your record for life.

How to Get an Arizona DUI Off Your Record

As mentioned above, a DUI conviction in the state of Arizona will never be expunged from your driving record. However, suppose you can have the conviction set aside. In that case, future employers might view the conviction less harshly because they will see that you fulfilled all requirements of the law and that the charges were eventually dismissed.

Since DUI expungement is not a realistic option, the best you can hope for is to hire an attorney skilled at having earned ‘set asides’ for previous clients.

With limited options available to individuals who have been charged with a DUI, you might be wondering how to have your DUI charge ‘set aside.’

You can submit an application to the court (or, preferably, your attorney can submit the application on your behalf), and the court will then consider your application using the following points as a guideline:

  • Your age at the time of conviction
  • How much time has passed since you got out of jail
  • Input from any victims of the DUI case
  • Prior DUI convictions
  • Compliance with all state-mandated obligations
  • The nature and the circumstances surrounding the DUI event when it initially occurred

Arizona Expunging DUI FAQs

There are a lot of questions about DUI expungement in Arizona. Here are a few we’ve received. If your answer is not provided, please reach out to our law firm directly.

How does a DUI show on a background check?

In the state of Arizona, if you are found guilty of driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, regardless of whether this is your first conviction or you have had several in the past, it will remain on your permanent criminal record. Your conviction for driving under the influence will show up on every background check that is performed.

How long does a DUI affect your insurance in Arizona?

The “look back period” in the state of Arizona is 84 months, or seven years, counting backward from the date of your DUI offense. This indicates that a DUI conviction might have an effect on the prices you pay for vehicle insurance for up to seven years. This is also the period of time that the state of Arizona takes into consideration for those who have been convicted of DUI more than once.

How much is a DUI fine in Arizona?

If this is your first DUI, you have to serve no less than ten days in prison and pay a fine of no less than $1,250. You are also required to participate in alcohol screening, education, and treatment, as well as install a certified ignition interlock device in any vehicle you drive, and you will be sentenced to community service.

Get a DUI Off Your Driving Record

As you can see, Arizona has some of the most stringent laws in the nation regarding driving under the influence of alcohol. Those laws kick in even before you’re officially charged with a DUI. For example, if you refuse to take a breathalyzer test when pulled over, you will automatically lose your license for one year — or longer if you have previous offenses. Arizona’s penalties for a DUI only get more severe depending on your DUI charge classification; standard DUI, Extreme DUI, or Aggravated DUI.

While you may be stuck with that DUI conviction on your record for life, you don’t necessarily have to suffer all the adverse effects of it. An experienced DUI attorney familiar with Arizona’s unique DUI laws can guide you through the process of having the DUI conviction set aside. This best-case scenario — second only to avoiding a conviction entirely — can mean future employers and anyone reviewing your driving record might not view the DUI in too harsh a light.

At Antol & Sherman, our DUI attorneys are former DUI prosecutors. That means that we have the knowledge, expertise, and background to help you overcome your DUI charge.

If you’ve been accused of a DUI, time is of the essence. It’s essential to begin preparing your defense right away. Contact us today for a free consultation and compassionate, skillful representation.

See also: 10 Best ADOT Signs of the Decade (In Case You Missed Them)

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