Did you just get pulled over for a DUI, are you worried. There are millions of Americans feeling your sentiment every year. You may have a lot of questions. I am not going to sugar coat the situation, a DUI is very expensive. Not to mention, many Americans lose their job every year after getting convicted of a DUI. However, the intention of this blog is not to scare anyone. It’s to take you on a step-by-step process of what to expect. Depending on your budget, there is somewhat of a variance.
If you have been drinking and are pulled over or the arresting officer suspects that you are intoxicated the process is pretty typical. You will be arrested, taken to jail, have your photo taken and booked. You will then be fingerprinted and if you refused to take the field breathalyzer, you then have the last option of giving blood to test your blood alcohol concentration level. If you refuse the blood test it will be used against you in the court of law and you will have an automatic year driver license suspension. In most states you can call a loved one and have them post bail so you can go home. However, in some states you must stay and sober up, and stay in jail for the mandatory minimum.
When you are arrested, you will be given a series of documents. One of the more important documents is your court summons. This summons informs you of the date that you will enter court to defend yourself against your driving under the influence charges. This is where the variance can enter the DUI situation. If you have the money to defend yourself, hiring an experienced DUI attorney can help your situation greatly. If you do not have an attorney fighting the state can prove to be very difficult. Only you know how difficult your case can be to defend. Having the money to defend your case is very beneficial. However, a DUI is not an easy case to overturn, speak to an attorney about a free consultation.
Your License will be Suspended:
Not matter if it’s your first DUI or you are a repeat offender. Your license is going to be suspended for a period of time. The suspension periods that are in place are standard. But if you have great representation and an insurance broker that specializes in DUI insurance. You suspension period can be a lot shorter than the driver who defends himself or goes through is a typical carrier. There are experienced attorneys that have unique strategies to keep your license or delay suspensions. Insurance brokers that have DMV experience can help you obtain your restricted license so you do not have to go without a driver license during the entire suspension period. Also, as I stated before is you refused both breath and blood tests you will have an automatic suspension imposed by the DMV before you even get to court. This is called a “refusal.”
If you are convicted of a DUI, every state will impose a fine. The severity of the fine depends on the circumstances of your case. Was there property damage, was a child endangered, and was someone injured? All these circumstances will allow you to fall under the minimum or maximum charge for your DUI offense. Whatever the circumstance you will have to pay fines and in some states your will have to pay a court fee.
To get your driving privileges back in most states you are going to need to obtain two things: SR22 insurance and proof of enrollment in your alcohol classes. The alcohol class curriculum are designed to teach drivers about DUI prevention while educating drivers about drinking habits and the dangers of getting behind the wheel. All of these classes cost pretty penny and they are mandatory. For first time DUI offenders the classes typically last three months and you have to attend once a week.
Insurance Rates will Sky-Rocket:
As mentioned before you are going to need to obtain an SR22 before you can legally drive again. The DMV requires this document to know you have insurance before they can issue you a restricted license. There are many ways to obtain SR22 insurance, but getting the right insurance is crucial. Many drivers who obtain an SR22 are paying double or even triple of what they were paying prior to their DUI conviction.
IID Installation on your vehicle:
Many states today are now requiring drivers to obtain an IID for even first time offenders. This device is expensive and very intrusive. It will not allow you to start your vehicle if there is any alcohol in your system. You need to attach the device to your ignition.