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It is a crime in every state of the United States of America to drive a vehicle under the influence of alcohol or other drugs, including the prescribed medications by physicians. The state laws may vary from place to place, but are general terms as driving while intoxicated (DWI) or driving under the influence (DUI), etc.
Even with clear evidence based on the blood-alcohol level (BAC or blood-alcohol concentration), a good DWI lawyer could be of help to represent you and advise on treatment programs etc.
In many states, upon DWI conviction, you may receive any sort of a criminal sentence by the court to go for community service or to pay off a fine, and sometimes into jail for a limited period. In cases, the driver’s license also may get suspended for a specific time or even revoked based on the severity of the offense and whether is it the first time being caught. An attorney may be able to protect the driving privileges under certain restrictions like installing an ignition interlock device (IDD) or to drive to and from home to work etc.
Important DWI terms to know
- Implied Consent – In all the states, the motorists applying for a license give default consent to the police stop and run a blood-alcohol concentration or BAC test. If someone breaks, this agreement may result in suspension of the driving license.
- BAC or Blood-Alcohol Concentration – This is the concentration of alcohol or intoxicants in the human bloodstreams. This test is universally accepted in determining the alcohol intoxication of a motorist.
- BAC or drug recognition experts – These are specially trained officers who check and determine the intoxication levels in DUI suspects.
- DUI Checkpoints – Some temporary roadblocks initiated by the police, sometimes on special occasions like the New Year’s Eve or during Thanksgiving, etc, where the motorists are checked at random for impairment.
Needing a DWI lawyer
Drunken driving is taken as a serious offense by courts as it can be dangerous and deadly to other motorists and others on the roads. For this reason, the stakes of DWI cases are usually very high. Those who are charged with serious DWI offense usually lose their license or to pay a hefty fine. If the offense is repeated, then one may end up in jail. Even if the DWI Lawyer Suffolk County is not able to dismiss the lawsuit, a good lawyer may be able to advise on possible options.
Legal representation in DWI cases are not so cheap, but a professional lawyer can offer you the best value for money and alleviate the troubles you may have to face otherwise. DWI practitioners are from criminal law and traffic violation specialty practice areas. If you are facing a DWI legal suit, then it is essential to contact a skilled and professional DWI attorney of your area.
Usual DWI penalties
The penalties for different types of drunken driving penalties may vary based on the DWI regulations of each state, but one may expect to suffer the combination of any of the following penalties.
- IT may be thousands of dollars in terms of DWI fine alongside the court fee and attorney charges.
- Additional cost out-of-the-pocket if needed to meet the requirements for any substance abuse treatment or to install an ignition interlock device at the vehicles as suggested by the court.
- Suspension or revocation of driving license.
- Community service or jail time or both.
- Evaluation or treatment of substance abuse or to go for Alcohol Anonymous sessions or treatment.
- Attending a DWI or traffic school and clear exams to regain license.
- Pay additional fee to reinstate the driving license. Once convicted, then there may be yearly fees to keep the license reinstated (sometimes up to 3 years or more).
- Limited privileges for driving, sometimes restricted to work and back home.
- Mandatory installation of IDD.
- Increase in insurance premium for certain number of years.
All these seem to be much daunting, and fortunately, a good DWI lawyer can help you navigate through the legal proceedings effectively, and defend you from getting falsely charged or guide you through the complications of it if you are guilty.
Choosing a DWI lawyer
DWI attorneys are specialized in drunk driving laws and may have years of experience in handling DWI lawsuits. They know the in and out o the charges, court proceedings, and penalties in such cases. It is also advantageous that the DWI lawyers have already worked with the judges before and are familiar with the common practices and approaches of the legal officer’s overtime. However, choosing a good DWI lawyer is never an easy task. There are a lot of providers specializing in various aspects of it, and you have to give it very careful consideration to choose the best.
Tips to hire DWI lawyers
- Seek for references. As DWI cases are very common, you may talk to people around if you are facing such trouble to see if they have worked with in any DWI lawyers in the past and if they can suggest someone you can trust for your purpose.
- Always choose any DWS lawyers with a fair degree of experience and expertise. Say, for example, you may not choose an attorney specializing in civil cases to present on your behalf for a DWI hearing, which is primarily a criminal suit.
- Try to choose a DWI attorney who practices in your state and is familiar with the state laws. Adding to it, local lawyers also may have a working relationship with the court officers and law enforcement officers to better plan your case.
- Try to consult more than one lawyer to choose the best based on your comfort level, the experience of the lawyers, feedback, and rating of others, as well as your budget.
Finally, always ask for the lawyer fees up front. In the beginning, you may have to pay a portion of it, and you have to face some additional costs too through the hearing. You also have to pay the agreed-upon fee at the end of the trial. There may be different information about hiring attorneys, and you have to make a wider consideration to choose the best.