Justia Lawyer Rating
Super Lawyers
The National Trial Lawyers


Jail time, fines, probation, driver's license suspension and DUI offender school/programs are just a few of the penalties you may face if convicted on charges of driving under the influence. Matt Sullivan has handled many DUI cases in San Francisco County, and he has the experience and skill necessary to successfully defend those charged with driving under the influence.

It makes no difference whether you are innocent or believe you may have broken the law, you still need a capable attorney. You might assume that if you have broken the law, that your punishment is a simple matter to resolve. However, this assumption is not true; until proven guilty, you are innocent and your legal rights must be protected. An attorney with experience defending DUI cases will use his knowledge, skill, experience and in-depth understanding of the DUI laws to protect his client's reputation, freedom and future. Even if you believe you have broken the law, it is important to hire a criminal attorney to help you negotiate the best possible resolution of your case.

How can a lawyer possibly defend a client who is charged with driving under the influence? There are many defenses a criminal lawyer may use in defending his client depending on the situation. Seasoned attorneys also know that police make mistakes, evidence is often not permissible in court, and that innocent individuals face serious consequences every day. This is why it is essential that you obtain the services of an attorney if you have been arrested for what is now considered a serious criminal offense. The machines used to test your blood alcohol level are notoriously unreliable. Every year, there are newspaper stories about hundreds of cases being thrown out due to testing errors. Often machines malfunction or are not maintained properly. A false reading can lead to a false conviction. You need a competent lawyer to help you from being falsely convicted.

The penalties you face if convicted hinge on several factors, including whether it is your first or a subsequent offense, whether an accident occurred resulting in injury, and whether you may have been speeding or driving in a reckless manner. If convicted, you will likely face fines, jail time, suspension of your driver's license, a criminal record that will affect your career and employment opportunities, and more.

Matt Sullivan is an attorney who will challenge your arrest using all of his skill and experience. Did police have reasonable suspicion to pull you over? Were breath/blood tests administered and handled properly, and are results reliable? Was a search performed without a warrant? These are just a few examples of questions that will be asked.

If you have been charged with driving under the influence, do not offer information or answer questions posed by police. Contact the Law Office of Matt Sullivan who will give your case the individual attention, dedication, and aggressive approach needed to seek to obtain the best possible outcome in your case.

What Should I Expect to Happen in My San Francisco DUI Case?

What happens with your case is ultimately up to you. You decide based on consultation with your attorney whether you plead guilty or take your case to trial. Attorney Sullivan has taken many DUI cases to trial and obtained successful results so he is able to give you a realistic assessment of your chances at trial. If you do decide to go to trial, the pre-trial phase will likely include the filing of motions to contest the evidence against you, including a motion to suppress, and possibly a motion to compel discovery.

If you elect to enter a plea of guilty, hiring an attorney is still important. An attorney can make sure you obtain the best possible resolution in your case.

Potential Consequences for DUI Offenses

First DUI: A fine of approximately $2000.00 (fines and fees), likely between 2-15 days jail, may be eligible to serve jail sentence with the Sheriff's Work Program, up to 3 years court probation, a DUI School, between 15 weeks and 9 months. If your blood alcohol content is above a .20 the prosecutor will likely seek a 9 month DUI school. If there was a collision, refusal, or blood alcohol level above a .20 there may be enhanced penalties or increased jail sanctions. License Suspension: Up to 6 months, 30 days in which you will not be able to drive. May include court ordered AA meetings. Ignition Interlock Device Restrictions.

Second DUI: A fine of approximately $2000.00 (fines and fees), 15 days county jail, some portion may be served on Sheriff's Work Program or other alternative sentences, probation, an 18 month DUI school, the California DMV will also suspend your driving privilege for 2 years as a result of your conviction. Ignition Interlock Device restrictions. If there is a collision there may be an additional jail sanction. If the BAC is .20% or higher, there may be an additional jail sanction.

Third DUI: A fine of approximately $2000.00, minimum 120 days jail, this can possibly be served on home detention if the San Francisco County Sheriff approves you for home detention, multi-year driver's license suspension, multiple offender DUI program, treatment, and extended probation. Alcohol treatment likely required. Ignition Interlock Device restrictions.

Fourth DUI: This will be charged as a felony in San Francisco County and throughout California and the consequences will be much more serious and will be dependent on your prior record, specifically, prior DUI record. A felony DUI requires 3 prior DUIs within 10 years. It carries a state prison exposure of 16 months/24 months/36 months. Ignition Interlock Device restrictions.

DUI w/Injury: Can be charged as a felony or a misdemeanor in San Francisco County. Whether it is charged as a felony or a misdemeanor is dependent on the extent of injury to the other party. Ignition Interlock Device restrictions.

Client Reviews
Mr. Sullivan helped me out during a very difficult time for me personally, and I am very satisfied with the outcome. He, unlike other attorneys that I spoke to, wasn't dramatic or falsely enthusiastic, and that was reassuring. He was savvy and realistic, experienced, a listener, flexible and affordable. D. Client
Over the past two years I have experienced extreme legal difficulties. We were unable to get help from anywhere. Within 24 hours of contacting Matt, I felt that I had finally found someone who could assist me in working towards resolving our situation. I highly recommend Mr. Sullivan. B. Client
I hired Mr. Sullivan to represent me in my DUI trial. He fought hard for me in a very difficult case, which we won. I was very happy with his services. It was obvious he cared about me and my case. He is a real attorney who will stand up for you. M.R.