Driving under the influence (DUI) is a criminal offense that could lead to severe consequences. However, some drivers do not understand the weight of DUI charges until they are arrested and charged in a court of law. Therefore, understanding DUI charges, what to do after an arrest, and possible consequences can help avoid severe consequences. This piece highlights what drivers should know about DUI charges and tips to safeguard their rights when charged with DUI.
Acceptable Alcohol Limits
Traffic officers typically charge drivers with DUI if they operate motor vehicles with a blood alcohol concentration of 0.08% or higher. Therefore, the officer will likely request a breathalyzer or other tests to prove that the driver was under the influence. If the suspected driver fails to comply with the tests, the police may arrest them and impound their car until they prove the driver is sober. Therefore, it is advisable to comply with the tests or contact a DUI attorney for guidance to avoid making mistakes that could worsen the case.
Consequences of DUI Conviction
Most drivers consider DUI a misdemeanor, but the consequences can be far-reaching. For example, a DUI conviction could lead to fines, mandatory alcohol education, license suspension, or jail term. So what determines the outcomes and consequences of each case? Many factors can improve or worsen the outcome of DUI charges. Generally, the court considers the driver’s age, whether it is their first time, their blood alcohol concentration, their behavior after arrest, and whether the incident led to accidents, injuries, or loss of lives.
Should Drivers Take Breathalyzer or Sobriety Tests?
Traffic officers may conduct sobriety or breathalyzer tests to ascertain that a suspected driver was under the influence. Therefore, the law enforcement officer may request the driver to walk in a straight line, stand on one leg, walk and turn, or maintain a horizontal gaze. They can also use the breathalyzer test to determine the blood alcohol concentration and prove that the driver was driving under the influence.
So what happens if the suspect refuses to take the sobriety or breathalyzer test? Refusing to take the test could lead to the suspension of the license in some states. If not sure what to do, the driver can consult their lawyer to avoid making mistakes that could worsen the situation.
What Is the Importance of Legal Representation After DUI Arrest?
Considering the severe consequences associated with DUI charges, the arrested driver should consider seeking legal representation. An experienced lawyer can protect the driver’s rights by examining the events leading to the arrest, the administration of tests, and whether anyone violated their rights. The lawyer can also help the suspect navigate the legal landscape, defend them, and negotiate for better outcomes. Without legal representation, the accused might make mistakes or share sensitive information that could be used against them, leading to fines, license suspension, jail term, or severe consequences.
The most effective way to avoid DUI arrest is to avoid drinking and driving. However, drivers arrested for DUI can reduce the chances of conviction by seeking legal representation. The lawyer can defend their rights and help them navigate the complex legal aspects to improve the outcome.