Four Key Things To Know About DUI Charges
At Mariani Reck Lane LLC, our New London lawyers have defended numerous individuals charged with driving under the influence (DUI/DWI). If you were pulled over and accused of this offense, we strongly encourage you to contact us for legal help. You can also read a few important things to know:
1. The Penalties Are Nothing To Scoff At
Nearly everyone knows someone who has been arrested for drunk driving. It’s such a common offense that it’s easy to make the mistake of thinking that it’s not a very serious one. That’s not true.
Even if this is your very first time being charged with DUI, a conviction could land you behind bars for up to six months. You may also have to pay $500-$1,000 in fines, and you may lose your right to drive for up to a year. This is all in addition to skyrocketing insurance rates and many other consequences.
2. You Actually Have Two Hearings To Deal With, Not One
You’re probably aware that a DUI is a criminal offense and as such, you will need to appear at a hearing before a judge to either plea guilty or to fight the charges. However, did you know that the suspension of your driver’s license is a separate matter? If you don’t want your license to automatically be suspended, you (or your attorney) must appear at a license restoration hearing at the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV).
3. Chemical Tests Aren’t Always Accurate
If the breath, blood or urine tests indicate that your BAC was over the legal limit, you may think that you don’t have a chance of combating the drunk driving charge. This isn’t always the case. It may be possible for us to challenge the test results on your behalf.
4. You Might Qualify For The Alcohol Education Program (AEP)
The AEP consists of 10-15 alcohol education sessions. If you qualify for this program (which is available to first offenders only), you can complete the sessions in exchange for having the DUI charge dismissed. This is certainly a better option than going to jail or ending up with a criminal record. Let us review the details of your situation and see if AEP is a possibility for you.