DUI charges can be incredibly confusing, especially if you’ve never been through the legal system. You might have no idea what to expect, or even what your rights are and whether or not they can be protected.
You should first talk to an attorney about your case if you’ve been arrested on DUI charges. A DUI charge can potentially mean jail time and losing your driver’s license and vehicle, so you need to be ready with a defense that considers these things before going to court.
A DUI arrest isn’t always as simple as it seems, though, and there are multiple reasons why you might have been pulled over and charged with the crime in the first place. The following guide on everything you need to know about DUI charges will give you the information you need to take control of your case.
What Is the Difference Between Alcohol-Related and Drug-Related DUI?
What you were arrested for will make a difference in your case. If you were driving under the influence of alcohol, whether your blood alcohol content (BAC) is 0.08% or higher, it’s considered an alcohol-related DUI.
However, if you are accused of driving under the influence of drugs (not including illegal ones like heroin), that’s a drug-related DUI and usually requires a separate test and arrest procedure because the legal limit is different for drugs than it is for alcohol.
What Can I Do If I Am Charged with A Less Serious Charge?
If you are charged with a less serious charge than DUI, such as reckless or inattentive driving, be sure you know what penalties you may face. First, consider whether you want to fight your charges or accept them and move on.
If you decide to fight your charges and plead not guilty, understand that it could take some time for your case to go through a trial. Also, it is important to pay close attention to details and follow instructions in court to exercise your rights properly throughout your case.
What Should I Do If I Am Charged with A More Serious Charge?
If you are charged with a more serious charge, you should contact an attorney who is an expert in your area. The attorney can help explain what happens next and create a strategy for your case. They also can represent you in court if that becomes necessary.
In addition, it is important to remember that even if you are convicted of one of these charges, there may be options for appealing or modifying your sentence. For example, a judge might reduce your sentence from jail time to house arrest if they believe it is more appropriate in your case.
Your attorney will know how best to assist you through all stages of these proceedings and any other defenses that could be available to you under state law.
How Long Do DUI Charges Last?
One of the most common questions on people’s minds is, how long do DUI charges stay on your driving record? Because every state has different laws and policies, it can be difficult to determine how long a DUI will last.
However, these charges will often eventually be dropped if there are no further arrests or repeat offenses in a certain period. Also, some states require that an ignition interlock device be installed for driving privileges to be restored after a DUI charge.
Every situation is different; before you allow yourself or someone else to get behind a wheel again, determine exactly what type of punishment may occur from your previous offense and how long that punishment may last.
Furthermore, once you are arrested, time is of the essence regarding your immediate driving privileges, regardless of your court case. In Florida, you have 10 days to file a Formal Review Hearing with the Florida DMV. Therefore, it is essential that you contact an attorney as soon as possible in order to put yourself in the best position going forward.