DUI – DWI – What You Should Know?

Driving under the Influence (DUI) or Driving While Intoxicated (DWI) is one of the most serious driving offenses in the United States of America. Although there are several driving offenses, the charge of DUI/DWI results in serious consequences and is likely to have grave implications on your future. Driving with a blood alcohol level of or above 0.08 % is a crime and your driver’s license can be revoked or suspended if you are found guilty. It can also make life costly and difficult through increased insurance costs and hefty fines.The United States takes the DUI/DWI offense very seriously. Drink Driving in states like California are set forth by a statute and California DUI Law can be incredibly complex. The consequences vary with different circumstances and in different states. But the basic punishment under the DUI law tends to remain almost the same.Besides the above mentioned, there are other circumstances that will make your punishment even harsher – if you are speeding while driving under the influence, if you have a child in the car, refusing to comply with the tests when asked, damage, injury, accident and loss of life. The greater the alcohol content, the greater the penalty under the DUI Law. If you are under age and have prior convictions for the same offense can also lead to immense problems.If you are a first-time offender, you may end up with a fine, possible jail time or community service with a suspension of your license under the DUI Law. You may be asked to attend, compulsorily an alcohol education program to avoid further such occurrences. In the event that you are a repeat offender, hefty fines and jail time is ensured. Your participation in the alcohol abuse program will also be longer and mandatory; moreover your license will be suspended or revoked and vehicle impounded.To determine whether you are under the influence of alcohol, law enforcement officers conduct various field tests, like the Horizontal Gaze, Walk and Turn, One Leg Stand tests which are a part of the standardize procedures under the DUI Law. These tests help to verify the driver’s ability to follow instructions as well as demonstrate balance and coordination. Additionally, they also conduct a chemical test or the Breath Analyzer test which records the alcohol level in your blood stream. If reading shows you to be over the required limit, then you are presumed to be driving under the influence and will be charged with drunk driving. You will then have to appear in court to defend the charges.Once charged with the DUI/DWI offense, under the DUI Law, there inevitably will follow a long drawn out process of legal involvement. The first step is the Preliminary Hearing at the district justice level. It will allow the judge to decide whether there is enough evidence against you. The next step is your arraignment that helps you to know what you are being charged with and whether you understand those charges. You will also be required here to enter a plea of guilty or not guilty. First time offenders may get away with a fine, community service and alcohol awareness programs.If you are deemed ineligible for the above programs or believe that you are not guilty, you can request for a trial by jury. In such a case, ensure that you have a good lawyer, as there is much legality that you may be completely unaware of. At the end of the case, the jury will find you guilty or innocent and will have to prepare yourself for sentencing.There are many lawyers and attorneys in the United States, but there are only a few that are well experienced in DUI or DWI law cases. Ensure that you choose a good and experienced lawyer for your defense. These lawyers know every aspect of defense to get an acquittal or at best a reduced sentence. The attorney needs to be well informed of the different tactics that can be used to make a client’s case have a good outcome. Good and honest communication is necessary between the lawyer and the client to ensure a comprehensive knowledge of the events that have occurred. He needs to go over each item that can be used in their client’s defense. When the police stop drivers, the drivers automatically feel guilty if they have had just one drink. Sometimes they are dealt with unfairly and this is what a good lawyer will pick up on. The defense that the lawyer will use relate to matters such as:
Whether your constitutional rights have been breached
Whether the officer concerned followed the correct procedures
Whether you were read your rights when the officer made the DUI/DWI arrest
Whether the blood and alcohol level tests were properly carried out
Whether the equipment used to monitor blood alcohol levels was
maintained and in good working order
The charge for drunk driving is an extremely serious offense. The consequences not only affect you for that moment but the charges will remain on your record permanently. It is thus important that you choose your lawyer wisely to fight your DUI/DWI case as it can affect your entire life and lifestyle forever. Many cases of DUI/DWI get dismissed by experienced DWI lawyers on simple technicalities. An experienced legal expert in this field of DUI Law will know exactly what to look out for, and will be aware of the various loopholes that can mean the difference between a successful charge or dismissal of charges.

Win Your DUI Criminal Defense and Force the Government to Prove Their Case Part II

So you were coming home from the wedding a little late at night and you had decided to toast the bride and groom one too many times….. You were stopped, the officer started the process and DUI education, here you come at full speed. Each DUI in the Bay Area, California triggers two separate and totally different types of cases.The first case is the most well known because it involves the great big chamber and the big robe and gavel. Yes, I mean the Court Process or Criminal Court Proceedings. This involves any evidence collected at the time of arrest among other things. The second charges brought against someone once arrested for drinking and driving involve the Department of Motor Vehicles and an administrative per se or APS case.In California vehicle code 13558, 14100 and 14103, time limits were set on how many days until contact must be made with the DMV after arrest. Due to these time limits, when an attorney takes a new DUI case in the Bay Area, they must contact the DMV within the first 10 days of arrest and request an APS hearing. A very important step and one that sadly enough sometimes forgotten or overlooked during the drama on a DMV arrest.This step is critical for the Attorney or person charged to be completed in a timely manner and affects whether or not the arrested individual will be able to keeo his/her license in the ling run. When calling a criminal defense attorney about drunken driving charges, most of the time, one of the first questions asked after, when were you arrested, is have you filed paperwork with the DMV to request a DMV hearing?DUI’ s in the Bay Area in California are growing, almost on a monthly basis since the new laws lowered the legal limit to 0.08%. The drunken driving arrests affects poor people more than the rich. Even though the public defenders office and system will help the poor in court and during the criminal part of the proceedings, the arrestees are completely on their own when it comes to the Department of Motor Vehicles.Most of the low income clients that you will find in a defense attorney’s office are looking for a lawyer simply for the DMV hearing and nothing else. They are worried about their license and of course the status of transportation when it comes to getting to their jobs, families and shopping.Anyone who forgoes the DMV hearing automatically loses the right to drive in California and any rights and defenses that existed are waived by the person arrested. If in the Bay Area at the time of arrest, and you have a CA drivers license, it is suspended for at least 4 months (or one year upon first offense refusal of chemical test). Having a commercial drivers license has steeper penalties for the arrestee.Most people simply don’t understand their rights once arrested and released and end up waiving all of their rights at the APS DMV Hearing. Not obtaining the proper defense attorney quickly after arrest can lead to several problems in the end, not the least of which losing your drivers license. Your lawyer should file that paperwork for you and make sure to make the 10 day limit and get the DMV their request in a timely manner.Looming foremost on most arrestees minds once they have been charged with a DUI is normally, what will happen to my drivers license? Hopefully once arrested, they have the state of mind needed to obtain the proper lawyer and get the paperwork filed with the DMV in time to keep the worry to a minimum.