August 24, 2011
What To Do if You Get a DUI
If you’ve already got a previous DUI/DWI conviction, it’s important to contact an attorney immediately. A drunk driving attorney will advise to move quickly, as the process involved with handling a DUI is time-sensitive. Your license is at risk to be suspended, and worse case – you may be looking at total revocation of driving privileges and possible jail time. An attorney can request an administrative hearing that might delay or stop the suspension process. If the administrative hearing does not go well for you, your license will be suspended for 30 days. This administrative suspension is called the “hard 30.”
What a Attorney Can Do IF YOU’VE BEEN CONVICTED OF DRUNK DRIVING
When you call a drunk driving attorney, the interview should start with you disclosing the number that you blew on the breathalyzer. This lets the attorney know if you are facing an administrative suspension or revocation for refusal to take the chemical test. The attorney will then ask a series of questions and gather evidence for your case such as: What caused you to be stopped in the first place; (swerving, running lights, speeding); What led the officer to believe you were intoxicated (slurred speech, breath, bad balance); How well or poorly did you perform on the standardized sobriety tests; Review of the dash cam video (if available) and an evaluation of your driving record and any past convictions for DUI.
The attorney is then in a better position to advise the best steps for how to defend the DUI charge. The attorney will advise if it’s best to go to trial or to settle with a plea agreement.
Levels of Intoxication on a First-Time DUI Offense
One important detail a DUI attorney will evaluate is your levels of intoxication. The number you blow will determine is the Department of Revenue gets involved with your case. Even if you blow less than .08, and you are over 21 you will not come under the Department of Revenue sanctions. But, it is important for you to know you can still be charged with DUI in criminal court.
If you blow .08 or higher, the criminal court system AND the Department of Revenue will be involved. A lawyer will help you through the process of not only working on your criminal court case, but defending you against any DOR suspension, too. It is possible to not be found guilty in criminal court, but still have your license suspended by DOR. It is possible to win the administrative hearing with the DOR but lose in criminal court. The two are exclusive of one another.
If you Don’t Have a good DUI Lawyer
Without the help of a good DUI lawyer, you risk not only having points against your license, but a revocation of driver’s license and jail time. Receiving 8 points in 18 months will get your driver’s license suspended, and 12 points in 12 months will cause your license to be revoked.
If you Refused to Blow into a Breathalyzer
If you refused to blow in the breathalyzer, you must move very quickly. Your refusal to take the breath test in itself will carry consequences. An attorney can file a stay execution motion and possibly get the order to revoke your license denied. If you refused to blow into a breathalyzer you will be driving on a slip of paper good for only 15 days, unless an attorney gets a stay execution order filed within the 15 day time period.
If you don’t contact an attorney and refused to blow, your driver’s license could be revoked for a year. You may apply for a limited driving privilege at the end of one year, and hopefully gain back some driving privileges. If you are looking at your second DUI offense and refusal, your license may be revoked for a year and no limited driving privileges allowed.
DUIs in Kansas City
There are different consequences for multiple-offenders as there are for first-time offenders with DUIs. If you’re in the Kansas City area, call my Lee’s Summit law office at (816) 272-1350 to receive legal advice to guide you through your DUI. We vigorously fight for our clients.