DUI Convictions – DWI Convictions – Is a DUI a Criminal Conviction
A DUI conviction means harsh DUI consequences that can last a lifetime. All 50 states have set up their judicial systems to maximize their drunk driving conviction rate, and state prosecutors are extensively trained to attack all new DUI cases. Most DUI prosecutors have years if not decades of prosecuting tough DUI cases, and especially if this your second DUI or more, the State will use every legal means to convict and punish in an effort to keep people from drinking and driving. DUI conviction rates can be as high as 80% of all DUI cases. But you have to dig deeper into this number. Not all of these convictions were contested by a top DUI lawyer, in fact a large majority were from defendants who did not hire a private DUI attorney and plead guilty at their first court appearance. Another percentage were appointed a public defender. A government-paid lawyer will be available to you because you have a legal right to representation in every court. Not all defendants qualify for a public defender. You must submit a written request and list your financial assets and annual income. DUI public defenders are good lawyers, but they have huge caseloads and do not have the time or resources to give your case the time it deserves. Also, generally these lawyers are young and inexperienced, and they learn DUI defense before joining a private law firm.
Life After DUI Conviction – What is a DUI Conviction? – For a Conviction of a DUI
DUI is a criminal offense that can be classified as a misdemeanor DUI, felony DUI or aggravated DUI. Each higher level of DUI brings on stiffer penalties after a conviction. A misdemeanor DUI conviction can include 24 – 48 hours in jail, DUI classes, court fines, loss of driver’s license, and community service. A felony DUI conviction increases jail time to months or even years depending on state DUI law, and depending on if this is your second or more conviction. We cannot list specific DUI penalties here because they vary by state, but we can put you in touch with a local DUI lawyer who is well-versed in your state’s DUI statutes, and who has many years of successfully challenging the prosecutor’s case. Police departments across the country are putting more DUI task forces on their roads to crack down on drinking and driving. Every state has adopted a minimum blood alcohol content (BAC) level of 0.08% for drivers over 21, 0.04% for commercial CDL drivers, and 0.02% for drivers under 21. You can also be arrested for DUI if your BAC is below these levels, if the arresting officer determines that you exhibit signs of impaired driving. This is called a DUI Less Safe.
DUI Conviction Rate – DUI Conviction Consequences – Is a DUI a Conviction?
To get the real facts about DUI conviction consequences, read Atlanta DUI lawyer William C. Head’s “97 Consequences of a DUI Conviction.” A lot of unforeseen consequences follow a guilty verdict. These include current job loss, diminished future job opportunities, college admissions difficulties, parole, DUI Court attendance, an ignition interlock device, car rental denial, and skyrocketed car insurance rates. You do not want to go to your first court appearance and plead guilty to DUI because you are under the impression that a DUI conviction is minor, or you feel you cannot afford a DUI attorney. Both of these are 100% not true! The court will always appoint a public defender for you. This is better than facing a DUI charge alone. State DUI laws change all the time, so even if you study the law and feel prepared to represent yourself, the prosecutor will be many steps ahead of you. We talk to potential clients who ask, “Is a DUI a conviction?” And our answer is a resounding NO! An arrest is not a conviction™. In America, you are innocent until proven guilty. You have a right to legal representation. Call and talk to us for a free initial consultation, and even if you hire someone else, you will gain valuable insight into the confusing world of DUI law.
Copyright 2015, by Atlanta DUI lawyer William C. Head, Atlanta, GA. Author of books on DUI law for a quarter of a century.