DUI Is a Serious Offense with Serious Consequences
You weren’t worried about getting pulled over for DUI. Your house was less than two miles from the restaurant, and you had only had a few drinks. You felt fine. You had made this same drive a hundred times before—you could do it in your sleep. Except that, this time, a cop was shooting radar in an unmarked car, and you were doing 29 in a 25. You didn’t even see him until he hit the blue lights.
Driving under intoxication (DUI / DWI) is a serious traffic offense that carries significant penalties. The penalties for drunk driving skyrocket with each additional offense, and the statutes defining the penalties for a conviction can be hard to navigate. Take a look at the DMV pamphlet “Virginia Is Tough on Drunk and Drugged Drivers” to see what we mean. The penalties for a drunk driving conviction can include the following:
- Fines of hundreds or even thousands of dollars;
- Jail time;
- Suspension or revocation of your driver’s license;
- Imposition of restricted driving privileges;
- Installation of an ignition interlock device on your vehicle;
- Required participation in the Alcohol Safety Action Program (ASAP);
- Required community service hours;
- Repayment of costs incurred by emergency response personnel (police department, fire department, and rescue squad) if you were involved in a wreck; and
- Impoundment of the vehicle that you were driving when you were arrested.
And those are just the penalties that the court will impose on you. Insurance companies will assess penalties of their own. If you are convicted of driving under the influence, your car insurance premiums might be affected for years to come. (State Farm goes so far as to say that DUI convictions “almost always” result in higher insurance rates!)
Unlike a simple speeding ticket, you cannot simply prepay the ticket for a DUI—not that you would want to! You will be required to appear in court. And that means that you need competent legal representation to protect your ability to drive in the future, especially if you hold a commercial driver’s license (CDL). This is true even if you were arrested in Virginia but live out-of-state.
Let Our Skilled DUI Lawyers Defend Your Rights
If you have been charged with DUI or DWI in Southside Virginia, contact one of our offices today to schedule your consultation with one of our experienced DUI lawyers. During your consultation, we will explain the possible penalties that you might face if you are convicted of driving under the influence. We will also discuss whether and how you should fight the charge. Our strategy will depend on factors such as:
- The circumstances of the stop,
- Whether or not you permitted a breath or blood sample to be drawn, and
- Whether you are being charged with your first DUI or a second or subsequent offense.
Our attorneys regularly defend clients like you in local courts throughout Southside Virginia, including the courts in Amelia County, Appomattox County, Buckingham County, Brunswick County, Campbell County, Charlotte County, Cumberland County, Dinwiddie County, Halifax County, Lunenburg County, Mecklenburg County, Nottoway County, and Prince Edward County. Each court is different. Although no attorney can ever guarantee results of any kind, hiring a local attorney with local knowledge means that our attorneys are better able to advise you as to what is (or is not) a feasible outcome in your case.
Many legal defenses relating to driving under the influence are technical and focus on whether or not the police followed the proper procedures to establish your guilt. These defenses sometimes take time to develop, so contact one of our skilled DUI lawyers without delay!