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Loudoun County Attorneys > Blog > Criminal Defense > What Happens After I Plead Guilty to a DUI?

What Happens After I Plead Guilty to a DUI?


For one thing, after you plead guilty to a DUI, the bills keep coming. In most cases, these individuals must obtain high-risk SR-22 insurance and keep it for at least three years. SR-22 insurance is usually at least three times higher than other forms of auto insurance. So, if your auto insurance is already high, due to a previous wreck or other high risk, an SR-22 could make driving unaffordable.

For purposes of this blog, post-DUI conviction matters usually include probation violations and sealing/expungement. More on these things below.

Expungement/sealing and probation issues both require the assistance of a Leesburg criminal defense lawyer. DUI convictions have significant collateral consequences. For example, most employers believe that most drunk drivers are poor decision-makers. These collateral effects extend well beyond the period of probation. And in Virginia, DUI probation is tough to complete. Attorneys make these processes much easier.

Probation Violations

The most common DUI probation violations in Loudoun County are new offenses, failed alcohol tests, missed appointments, and incomplete alcohol evaluations.

Quite frankly, there’s nothing much a Leesburg criminal defense lawyer can do if a probationer gets re-arrested. Most probation departments have mandatory revocation policies in these situations. The best any lawyer can do is minimize the damage.

Failed alcohol tests are another matter. Breathalyzer tests, especially the backup tests that most probation departments use, are not very accurate. The alcohol digestion process is a good example.

Assume Peter has one beer at a party. While there, he’s ordered to take a random Breathalyzer test. More than likely, the alcohol has not yet entered Peter’s bloodstream. Since it’s still in his stomach, the Brathalyzer result may be artificially high.

Multiple missed appointments are much like new offenses. There’s not much anyone can do. However, if the defendant only missed one appointment, or maybe two, a Leesburg criminal defense lawyer can usually make appropriate arrangements, especially if the defendant had an excuse other than “my car ran out of gas” or “my cat was sick.”

Incomplete alcohol evaluations are a serious issue in Loudoun County. Many counselors throw people out of programs if they don’t say they’re alcoholics. Attorneys help ensure that people get the help they need, not the help a counselor thinks they need.


Currently, this section only requires one word (no). But a major new sealing/expungement law takes effect in July 2025. Under both current law and the new law, DUI convictions cannot be expunged (erased) or sealed (buried). But that’s not the end of the story.

Back door DUI convictions, such as reckless driving, could be sealed or expunged under the new law. If the evidence is weak, such as issues with the chemical test as mentioned above, prosecutors are often willing to reduce the charges if the defendant pleads guilty.

To them, a bird in the hand is worth two in the bush. Better to take the sure thing (a conviction for a lesser-included offense) than risk it all at trial.

Furthermore, as part of the new law, many jurisdictions plan to relax or eliminate their mandatory DUI prosecution policies. This policy change would give prosecutors more flexibility to work out charge reduction plea bargains.

Connect With a Dedicated Loudoun County Lawyer

There’s a big difference between an arrest and a conviction in criminal law. For a confidential consultation with an experienced criminal defense attorney in Leesburg, contact Simms Showers, LLP. Attorneys at Law. Virtual, home, and jail visits are available.



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