Being charged with driving under the influence or any other related offense should be taken seriously as these charges can have significant long-term consequences.
A DUI conviction can put your career, personal relationships, and overall quality of life at risk. While some may think the situation is hopeless, there are ways to fight a DUI charge. One of our experienced DUI attorneys can help defend you against the evidence the state has brought against you and make sure you are treated fairly under the law.
Penalties for a Drunk Driving Charges
First time DUI offenses in DC can result in a maximum $1,000 fine, up to 90 days in jail, and a license suspension of six months with enhanced minimum jail sentences. Additionally, those facing drunk driving charges may accrue additional expenses for towing, bail, attorney fees, the cost of high-risk insurance and court costs, and reinstatement fees.
While a first-time DUI offense can be devastating, more than one offense can have even more costly consequences. Second offenses can result in fines up to $5,000, and third offenses can result in fines up to $10,000. When someone receives a fourth DUI offense they may face indefinite license suspension.
Getting charged with a DUI can result in your license being revoked, increase your insurance rates, and change how you are perceived by those in both your personal and professional life. If you are convicted, your drunk driving charge will appear on background checks when you apply to jobs, schools, and even housing. An attorney could work to negotiate a plea agreement to mitigate any potential penalties you may face. For instance, they could convince the prosecution to reduce or drop the charges, keep your license from being suspended, or get you acquitted.
How a DUI Attorney Can Help You
If you hire an experienced DUI lawyer, they may be able to present evidence that creates reasonable doubt or finds flaws in the evidence against you. For example, your attorney may find that your blood alcohol test was not performed accurately, that your rights were violated during arrest procedures, or that there are errors in the police report filed against you.
There are a number of laws that outline how your DUI case should be handled, and if any of them are broken, your attorney may be able to get your case dismissed. Your lawyer can also use legal protocols and motions, arguments, and objections to help defend you against DUI charges. For instance, your lawyer may try to find evidence of police misconduct, such as stopping you without probable cause. They could also find errors in your blood alcohol test, from how the test was administered to whether the officer who administered the test had the proper certification. It is important to understand that refusal of the breath or blood tests could result in immediate license suspension for 12 months.
“Because of the grave consequences that come with a drunk driving charge, it is important to find a skilled DUI attorney,” David Benowitz says. “The attorney you hire should be happy to use every strategy they can to help you fight the DUI charge.” If you are worried about the consequences of a recent DUI offense, do not hesitate to contact an experienced attorney for help fighting the charges against you.