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What to Expect if You’re Charged With a DUI

Aug 15

Getting arrested and charged with a DUI is an incredibly scary situation. Whether it’s happened to you before or not, it can come with many challenges. What you can expect after being charged will likely differ from state-to-state and depending on your specific situation. Having a general idea of what might happen, however, can help alleviate some of the anxiety that comes with the unknown. Keep reading to learn what you might be able to expect if you’re charged with a DUI.

You’ll be placed in a holding cell upon booking.

After arriving at the station, your possessions will be taken by the police and returned after you’re released–unless they’re considered evidence. You’ll have a background check done as well as fingerprints and photographs. Your Miranda Rights will likely have already been read to you upon your arrest, and it’s always a good idea to remain silent until you have a lawyer there to support you. You may need to have a breath sample or blood test taken as well.

Penalties will depend on your specific situation.

The penalties you face will depend not only on your BAC (blood alcohol content), but also on any previous DUI convictions—particularly from the last 10 years. For first-time DUIs with a BAC up to .09 percent, you might expect a fine up to $400 and the installation of an ignition interlock device in your vehicle for several months. You could also be looking at around six hours of classes at the Intoxicated Driver Resource Center. As the driver’s BAC or number of DUIs increase the penalties increase as well. With three or more DUIs, a driver could potentially face up to eight years of license suspension.

You could face jail time.

Again, depending on the number of DUIs you’ve had in the past, you may be looking at jail time. Typically, for first-time convictions, the maximum amount of jail time is 30 days. If this is at least your third conviction, however, a minimum of 180 days in jail can be expected.

Navigating DUI charges on your own is challenging.

The stress and anxiety of being charged with a DUI can be incredibly overwhelming. There are a lot of factors that come into play, and many different things to navigate as you defend your case. Trying to figure out the justice system without any support can be a huge burden. Having an experienced New Jersey DUI lawyer on your side can help alleviate stress and also massively increase your chances of success with your case.

You could still have legal defenses available to you.

Don’t let yourself get discouraged, no matter how the case looks to you. There are many avenues of defense an experienced lawyer can help you identify—whether the DUI took place at an improperly conducted checkpoint or there simply isn’t enough evidence to prove you were driving while under the influence. Make sure you have someone you can trust fighting in your corner so you have the best possible chance of getting your charges dismissed or downgraded.