A DUI can be a scary experience for people of all ages. While many people know better than to drink and drive, it can be difficult to avoid driving after some situations. For example, many people enjoy having a drink or two while eating out at a restaurant. For most people, a drink or two won’t cause any serious problems. However, two strong drinks for some people may result in a DUI.
An individual is considered to be driving under the influence any time his or her blood alcohol content (BAC) is higher than 0.08 percent. Several studies have shown that one to three drink unitscan put the average person above the safe BAC for driving.
Drink driver or drunk driver?
It’s not always obvious when one is driving under the influence of alcohol. For many people, the line between tipsiness and inebriation isn’t very clear. Since alcohol can have an impact on the way that people perceive the world around them, many may feel that their driving skills are fine under the influence of moderate amounts of alcohol.
The consequences of DUI…
DUI laws vary significantly in different states. However, almost all parts of the United States restrict driving when an individual has a BAC above 0.08 percent. Police often set up DUI checkpoints during the evening and night time hours to catch offenders.
First time offenders:
Most first-time DUI offenders will have their license suspended for at least six months. In addition, a driver will need to attend an addiction treatment program to learn about the dangers of drunk driving. Some states will also require an individual to take defensive driving classes. In Virginia new laws have recently been passed and are due to come into force in July, whereby first time DUI offenders will have ignition interlock devices fitted to their vehicles. Although this is to become a mandatory penalty for a guilty DUI verdict, hiring a Virginia DUI lawyer is still advisable to avoid curtailment of other driving privileges.
Multiple DUIs can result in the loss of even more driving privileges. After a third DUI, most people will lose their license for at least 10 years. For people who don’t lose their license, it may be necessary to install an IID in their vehicle to make sure that an individual hasn’t consumed alcohol at any time before entering a vehicle and whilst driving.
Bail or jail:
After an individual has been arrested for a DUI, then bail will be set. In most cases, the bail for a DUI case is around $2500. If an individual does not have this much money available, he or she will remain in jail until a trial.
Increased insurance rates:
In addition to a high monetary cost, a DUI conviction can raise an individual’s insurance rates significantly. After a DUI, an individual may not be able to keep his or her current insurance policy since many insurance companies are unwilling to provide insurance for people who have broken the law. Many insurance providers take the view that people who have broken the law may be at an increased risk of being in an accident, and as a consequence look for ways to minimize their risk. This means that even for a first time offence the cost of insuring a vehicle can rise significantly, whilst those with multiple convictions may find it impossible.
Fighting a DUI charge can be a scary experience, so hiring a lawyer to fight to your case is a wise move. In states like Virginia the penalties for a guilty DUI conviction can be harder than in other states. If you are stopped and tested here than calling an experienced Virginia criminal attorney can make the difference between hanging on to some or all of your driving privileges or loosing them entirely.