You can certainly try to contact an attorney before deciding whether or not to take the breath or blood test, but realistically speaking, the police are not going to let you use your phone while they are investigating you for DUI. It's unlikely that you would be able to successfully discuss things with an attorney at that time. If you have been pulled over and the police believe that you have been drinking and driving, most attorneys will advise you to cooperate with them and take the breath or blood test. If you refuse, then you will lose your driver's license for one year. In addition, you will probably end up with a DUI conviction because it will be hard to rebut the presumption related to a DUI refusal in Los Angeles County.
What To Do After Release from Jail
If you get cited out of jail in Los Angeles County, then you'll probably get a ticket that lists the date, time and location of your next court date. If you get bailed out, the bail bond company will typically give you a half slip of paper that will list your court date and what you were booked for. You will want to take that paperwork to a qualified DUI attorney who can help you out. The paperwork should also list an ECI reading, which is the reading from the breath test.
If you have a California driver's license and you are arrested in LA County for a DUI, the police will usually take that license from you and send it to the DMV. They will give you a pink slip that will serve as a temporary license for 30 days. If you were to be pulled over during the 30-day period after the arrest, then you could show the police that pink slip as proof that you are driving lawfully. Once you hire an attorney, they will call the DMV and set up a DMV hearing. If the DMV hearing is set beyond that 30-day time period, then you will get another temporary license that will allow you drive up until the DMV hearing date.
It's important to avoid making the mistake of giving the police information, because they will only try to use it against you in a later prosecution. This will make it more difficult for your attorney to represent you. Another mistake would be to attempt to handle a DUI case without an attorney. Since you are not an attorney, you won't know which questions to ask or how to properly defend your case.
Will I Have To Go After a DUI Arrest?
In Los Angeles County, you will typically have a court date within about 30 days of a DUI arrest. If you do not appear at that court date, there will be a warrant issued for your arrest. However, if you hire an attorney, that attorney may be able to make that first court appearance for you. That is the practice of my firm; we attend the first court appearance, review the paperwork, meet with you, and speak to the prosecutor in order to get a feel for what we are up against. We will ask for two or three weeks in order to continue reviewing all of the paperwork, allow you to review it and decide how to proceed.