Once those blue lights flash in your rearview on the way home from the party, the answer becomes fairly obvious. Having the police drive behind you makes anyone nervous, even if you haven't done a thing. You start carefully regulating your speed, trying to remember if you put your updated insurance card in your car while every correction you make feels like you are careening across the lane. Imagine how much worse things will be if you are still dealing with the effects of spiked eggnog.
A DUI is a serious offence and since the Georgia DUI laws became much stricter in 2001, they carry serious penalties. It doesn't take much to be declared legally intoxicated. Depending on weight and other factors, one six ounce glass of wine at dinner can result in a measurement of .05. So as the officer walks toward your car, you may find yourself desperately wishing you knew the answers to the following questions.
What can happen if I get convicted of DUI?
It all depends whether it's your first, second, third, or fourth DUI. The penalties get more severe as the frequency increases. In most cases you will lose your license for a year upon arrest. You will have to serve jail time which can lead to embarrassment and possible job loss. You could have to do hundreds of hours of community service and pay thousands in fines. There are certain state mandated minimums that must be applied but a good DUI attorney can keep your penalties as close to those minimums as possible.
Do most people charged with a DUI get found guilty?
For the most part, the answer is yes. DUI convictions are at an all time high and many prosecuting attorneys are under pressure to prosecute DUI cases aggressively.
What are the financial ramifications of a DUI?
The fines vary a great deal depending on how many DUIs you have had. A first offender can expect to pay anywhere from $300 to $1,000 in fines. You will also have to go to court where further court fees may be levied. The biggest impact on your finances could be the mandatory loss of license. A lot of people have lost their job due to this and that makes any other fee or penalty that much worse.
What can I do to avoid a DUI conviction?
Call a DUI lawyer with the Don Turner Legal Team as soon as possible. You have a limited amount of time to request a special hearing to appeal your license suspension. Plus, you will need a DUI attorney to help you negotiate a deal if there is strong evidence against you. Without one, the courts have no reason to work with you on fines and penalties. This leads to people without representation getting taken advantage of.
When will my driving record get back to normal?
Unfortunately, a DUI conviction will never be taken off your driving record, even if you move to a different state.