Driving under the influence is the case of most auto accidents. DUI is simply driving while intoxicated beyond the legal blood alcohol content (BAC). Some are minor, while most are fatal. DUI comes with legal implications when you cross paths with law enforcement. The charges can impact your reputation, personal life, and career.
Having drunk driving lawyers familiar with state and federal laws to represent you when arrested for DUI is vital. The attorney negotiates and guides you during arraignment, trial, and sentencing. The costs range from $5,000 to $12,000. A first-time DUI conviction will result in imprisonment for 72 hours, fines of at least $1,500, and license revocation for a minimum of 90 days. A person who drives under the influence of alcohol risks his life, career, and the lives of many others.
A person may be convicted of DUI as a first time or repeat offender. It is based on actual impairment of drugs or being under the influence based on the concentration of alcohol in your system. A first time dwi conviction will result in license suspension for 90 days, mandatory installation of an ignition locking device, fines, and a minimum jail sentence of 72 hours. A second conviction within 15 years of the first carries at least 20 days in prison and a minimum fine of $3,000.
In 2009, traffic crashes injured 5,330 and killed 64 Alaskans, many of which were alcohol-related. It doesn’t take much to become too intoxicated to drive home after a night out. It just takes one mishap in judgement to get arrested. In Alaska, 25 people were killed in 2007, and in each accident at least one driver had a blood alcohol content (BAC) of 0.08% or above. A BAC of 0.08% is the national cap for how much alcohol you can have per liter of blood.
A drunk driving charge is very serious and can affect your career, personal life, and reputation, so you will definitely need a DUI defense attorney at your side if you find yourself in a DUI/DWI situation. A DUI defense attorney will be familiar with both state and federal laws pertaining to your rights as a defendant and can guide your through the trial process as well as negotiate terms with the judge.
Arraignment: This will most likely be your first court hearing in the DUI law process. Here, a judge will read your charges and will ask for your plea (to which you will say “guilty” or “not guilty”). The best DUI attorney will most likely have you say not guilty, unless you and your attorney have arranged a different strategy.
The prosecutor, which may be a personal injury lawyer if you injured another person, will then give your DUI defense attorney a copy of the evidence collected against you. Evidence may include the results from your blood test, police reports, etc. Also thrown into the mix may be a personal injury claim from the prosecution side.
The date of your trial will also be set during this time by the judge. With an average of 8.3 out of 1,000 people being arrested for a DUI in Alaska, your court date may be far away.
Trial: You may need to go to a preliminary hearing or opt for plea bargain, which can often stop your case from going to trail (most cases are resolved earlier). If not, here is what to expect: Opening statements by your DUI defense attorney and the prosecutor’s attorney, testimony from any witnesses, cross-examination, closing arguments from both sides, jury deliberation, and finally the verdict of your case.
Sentencing: If found guilty, to may need to either pay a fine, spent a short time in jail (serious first offense), serve a long time in jail (if you injured or killed someone), be put on probation, etc. Most first-time offenders will need to do some sort of community service work or rehab or alcohol counseling.
How much is a DUI attorney? DUI attorney fees can vary, but the entire process — assuming this is your first offense and no injuries occurred nor damage to property — can cost between $5,000 and $12,000. This includes your attorney fee, court costs, and other legal fees. More.