Are you or someone you love faced with a DUI charge? To understand the charges against you, it is vital to first have a basic understanding of DUI. Driving under the influence includes using alcohol or any drugs to the point that mental and motor skills are inhibited.
A few typical substances that lead to DUI are:
• Illegal drugs (marijuana, cocaine, inhalants, etc.)
• Over the counter medicines
• Prescribed medications (painkillers)
Police look for intoxication using field sobriety tests (FST). These may include such tests as walking in a straight line or standing on one-leg. There are also chemical tests to determine blood alcohol content (BAC). The most common is the Breathalyzer. Drivers breathe into the device and the blood alcohol content is displayed. Blood and urine tests are the other chemical tests that may be taken to determine one’s sobriety. These tests are not perfect! Not one is 100% accurate, even if they are administered properly.
If intoxication is suspected you will be charged with DUI. If convicted, you (the driver) can face immediate driver’s license suspension and possible vehicle impoundment until the suspension concludes. Repeat offenders may face driver’s license revocation and jail time.
You may have heard of the terms “per se” and “zero tolerance”, but what do these laws mean? In each state there is a certain level of intoxication that a motor vehicle driver cannot exceed – if they do, this is considered going over the legal limit or “per se laws”. In most states, the legal limit is set at .08. Zero tolerance laws apply to underage drinkers. If a person under the age of 21 is found with alcohol in their system that is a violation of the zero tolerance law.
Another law known as implied consent affects all drivers in every state. If a driver is asked by a police officer to submit to a chemical test, he or she should do so or they can face immediate suspension of their driver’s license.
So what can you do if you are charged with a DUI? There is a great urgency in the time you have to respond to your DUI charge! A lawyer specializing in DUI law is the only way to ensure fair treatment in the courtroom. The law limits your time to respond, so get help now!