Count on experience
Only experienced DWI attorneys know how to introduce reasonable doubt regarding the evidence.
Evidence is often technical in DWI cases so it takes time to evaluate it.
Know the difference
A DUI is a much different charge than a DWI.
Think about the penalties
Penalties for convictions increase with subsequent convictions and for enhanced charges.
What is the difference between DUI and DWI?
A DUI, or driving under the influence, is a charge reserved for people who are under the legal drinking age of 21 years old. In this case, there is no acceptable amount of alcohol that can be present when the blood-alcohol concentration percentage is determined. A DUI is a misdemeanor that doesn’t carry any possible jail time.
A DWI, or driving while intoxicated, is a charge that is reserved for adults who are 21 years old or older. This charge applies when they have a BAC over the legal limit. The legal limit for most drivers is .08 percent. First and second DWIs, unless they have extenuating circumstances like an accident with an injury, are considered misdemeanors. Third and consecutive DWIs are felonies, as are charges with extenuating circumstances.
It is also possible to face enhanced charges for a DWI. This is possible when a driver has a passenger who is under 15 years old. This is a DWI with a child passenger. It is also possible to face an aggravated DWI if a person’s BAC is .15 percent or above.
What happens when you get a DWI?
When you get a DWI, you have to take swift action. You must request an ALR hearing if you want to try to fight the driver’s license suspension. The request must be filed in 15 days or your driver’s license will be suspended for 40 days.
From a criminal justice aspect, you might have specific conditions of release placed on you if you bond out of a jail. This can include a blow-and-go restriction. There is also the possibility that you will face a driver’s license suspension as a condition of a criminal conviction on the DWI charge. You may also have to deal with fines and other penalties if you are convicted of the DWI.
How long does a DWI stay on your record?
The length of time that a DWI stays on your record depends on how the case is resolved. If the case doesn’t end in a conviction, you can petition the court to expunge the arrest record so that it doesn’t show up on a criminal record check.
If the case ends in a conviction, whether it is through a guilty plea or a conviction at trial, it is on your record permanently. You can’t have it removed, so it will always be visible for anyone who does a criminal record check on you.
The impact that having a DWI conviction can have on a person is life-long. It can impact a person’s ability to find a job, find housing, or find affordable insurance. This is why having a strong defense that is prepared by an experienced attorney is valuable. Attorneys who deal with DWI cases on a regular basis have in-depth knowledge of how specific evidence can be questioned. This can help to shore up a defense to give the defendant the best chance of not having to face these serious collateral consequences.