Driving while intoxicated (DWI) and driving under the influence (DUI) are serious crimes that will result in lifelong consequences if you either plead guilty or are otherwise convicted of either offense. Specific penalties depend on state law and the circumstances of your case, including whether anyone was injured while you were driving or if you had an open container in the car. It is therefore important to speak with the experienced Salt Lake City DUI attorneys at Rasmussen & Miner before making any assumptions about what you can expect from your case. Every case is different and every case should benefit from a unique defense strategy. Speaking with an experienced Salt Lake City, UT DUI lawyer as soon as you possibly can will help to ensure that your case benefits from a personalized defense designed to protect your rights and mitigate the consequences associated with your situation.
Although in most states, a first-time DUI or DWI is a misdemeanor, you may still face mandatory jail time of a few days to up to six months or more in jail. If you have a high blood alcohol concentration when you were arrested, jail time may be increased. If you kill someone, your DUI may be classified as a felony, which means you could face several years of imprisonment if convicted. The state where you were arrested matters, as that state law will govern the potential consequences you now face. Any time you have questions about potential consequences or any other aspect of your case, alert your Salt Lake City DUI attorneys. It is better to ask questions than to panic.
Fees, Fines and Monetary Penalties
The judge can impose a fine on you as part of the penalty for a DUI. It could range from $500 to $2500, depending on state law, the circumstances of your case and the judge’s discretion. In addition, you may have to pay court costs, which will quickly add up. If you injured someone, you could also be liable for their medical bills, lost wages and property damages. Your insurance may decline to cover those expenses because you were driving while intoxicated. Your Salt Lake City DUI attorneys can advise you of your options if you’re facing a civil action in addition to criminal charges.
Administrative Driver’s License Problems
In most states, your driver’s license will be suspended when you are charged with a DUI or DWI. You have to deal with this issue separately from the criminal charges. If you refuse the blood or chemical testing, it’s almost a given that you will be suspended from driving. You will have to pay more fees to get your license back.
In addition to the formal criminal charges and administrative issues, once you have a DUI on your driving record, your insurance rates will increase. You may find it difficult to get insurance. A DUI and DWI can affect hiring. You may find it more difficult to get a job that includes driving. If you have a CDL, you may lose your commercial license, even if you were off the clock when you got the DUI. Some professional licenses may be restricted if you have a DWI. You may also not be able to get federal financial aid with a DWI/DUI.
For these reasons and many more, if you have been charged with DWI or DUI, please contact experienced Salt Lake City DUI attorneys immediately so that our firm can get to work defending your rights.