Arlington DUI Lawyer
Failing a sobriety test doesn’t necessarily mean that there’s no way to beat a drunk driving charge. Find out how to build the defense that clears your name by working with an Arlington DUI lawyer.
If you’re facing a drunk driving charge, there’s a lot you stand to lose if you get convicted. Legal consequences include the loss of your drivers license, heavy fines, and jail time. Non-legal consequences include the stigma that comes with a conviction for driving under the influence (DUI), which can negatively impact your personal and professional life.
A drunk driving charge is a difficult thing to be up against. An Arlington DUI lawyer with Priale & Racine, PLLC can be a trusted legal advocate who will work to have the charges against you lessened or dismissed altogether.
DUI Charges and Possible Penalties
A person driving any vehicle—car, boat, plane, bus, and so on—can be charged with DUI. A person who is over the age of twenty-one and does not have a commercial drivers license (CDL) is considered a drunk driver if his or her blood alcohol content (BAC) is over .08 percent at the time of arrest. In Virginia, you do not have the option of refusing a breath test. Regardless of whether you are ever found to be driving drunk, refusing a breath test could result in a year of jail time.
Below are some of the DUI classifications that do not involve accidents, along with their possible legal consequences upon conviction. If you are accused of drunk driving and causing an accident that involves injury or death, the penalties can be substantially more serious.
- First Offense – Mandatory minimum fine of $250, up to one year in jail, one-year license revocation, and minimum six-month ignition interlock device
- Second Offense – Mandatory minimum fine of $500, three-year license revocation, up to one year in jail, and minimum six-month ignition interlock device
- Additional Penalty for Second Offense Within Ten Years of the First Offense – Minimum ten-day jail term
- Additional Penalty for Second Offense Within Five Years of First Offense – Minimum 20-day jail term
- Third Offense – $1,000 minimum fine, license suspended indefinitely, prosecution as a class 6 felony
- Additional Penalty for Three Convictions Within Ten years – Indefinite license revocation
- Additional Penalty for Three Convictions Within Five years – Mandatory minimum six month jail term
Your Arlington DUI lawyer will fully understand what you’re up against and the uncertainty you might be feeling. Depending on the circumstances of your arrest and which offense you are currently on, it’s entirely possible to get your charges reduced—possibly even dismissed outright if the evidence in your favor is strong enough.
A DUI Conviction Will Negatively Impact Your Life in Many Ways
A drunk driving conviction carries a social stigma, and while just being charged will incur some of these effects, a conviction can amplify them significantly. A DUI charge can leave a stain on your professional life. You might lose your license, which could affect your ability to work and support your family.
Your monthly insurance premiums are all but certain to go through the roof if you get convicted, or your insurance company may drop you completely. You may have a harder time getting a car, a job, an apartment, and anything else with an application that contains the question “have you ever been convicted of a crime.”
An Arlington DUI lawyer from our firm will understand all of the ramifications of a drunk driving conviction that you are facing—both legal and otherwise. By fighting against your charges with the right defense, you can avoid the worst of these consequences, clear your name, and protect your future opportunities.
The Risks of Representing Yourself
If you’ve been charged with a DUI, you may be considering serving as your own legal representation. However, this is almost always a bad idea that will leave you at a significant disadvantage when it comes time to go to court.
Prosecutors will usually not even discuss a plea deal with a defendant who does not have his or her own defense attorney. If you are offered a plea deal while acting as your own defense, it will be drawn up by someone with in-depth legal knowledge and years of experience. This “bargain” will almost certainly not represent your best interests—or even consider them, for that matter.
Your best course of action is to hire a legal advocate who has years of experience representing cases like yours. An Arlington DUI lawyer from our firm will walk with you through all parts of the legal process and will have your best interests in mind at every step of the way.
Defenses Against a Drunk Driving Charge
Breathalyzer tests are known to be unreliable, yet you may have been charged with a DUI solely because of a breath test, which you are by state law not permitted to refuse. In order to be at all accurate, Breathalyzers must be maintained to high standards. By examining the maintenance logs of the device, we might be able to introduce reasonable doubt if there are any gaps there.
This is just one possible defense an Arlington DUI lawyer may employ. For a conviction, a prosecutor must prove beyond a shadow of a doubt that you were driving drunk. Our firm will examine all the evidence associated with your charge, including possible police misconduct caught on body camera, whether you have a medical condition with symptoms that mimic the symptoms of intoxication, or if your job or the surroundings might have interfered with your breath test and given a false positive.
Contact an Arlington DWI Lawyer
If you’ve been charged with drunk driving in Virginia, you have options other than simply accepting the consequences. Priale & Racine, PLLC is here to help you overcome the charges against you. Whether you are a professional driver looking to protect your livelihood or an underage minor who was out with friends on a Saturday night, we can defend you and protect your future.
Arrange a free and confidential case evaluation with an Arlington DUI lawyer and begin building your defense today. There’s no obligation involved, so there’s no risk to exploring your options for a solid legal defense. Just give us a call at 703-272-3922 or use the online contact form below.