Alabama Criminal Defense Lawyer

Driving Under the Influence

From the news media, you would think that 0ne of the most dangerous and serious crimes a person can commit is to drive a motor vehicle under the influence of drugs or alcohol. In Alabama there are strict laws that govern the legal amount of alcohol and individual can consume and safely drive a vehicle.

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In fact, a DUI charge is something that could happen to almost anyone, given the wrong set of circumstances, and a little bad luck.  We all understand that these laws are designed to protect the public from drunk drivers who could cause serious car accidents, injuries, and deaths. But only a tiny percentage of drunk driving cases involve accident or injury to anyone.

There are differing penalties to pay depending on how many of these types of offenses you have in a certain amount of time. Please contact us for help on a DUI charge in Alabama. The consultation is free.

Alabama DUI Laws

The blood alcohol level for regular drivers is below .08%. If your level is higher than this, you can be arrested driving under the influence of alcohol.

For individuals who drive semi-trucks and other commercial vehicles, the level is lower at .04%. If you drive a school bus or any type of vehicle that transports children, the level drops even more down to .02%.

If you are suspected of driving under the influence, a law enforcement officer has the right to pull you over. During the traffic stop, law enforcement may put you through a serious of tests to determine your level of sobriety, including a breath test or a blood test to determine your blood alcohol level.

Penalties for DUI Offenses

There are several different penalties for driving under the influence depending on how many previous offenses you have on your record. The first offense typically results in the individual having their driver’s license suspended for a period of 90 days. Along with the 90 day suspension, you will be required to pay a fine that ranges from $600 all the way up to $2,100. You will also be required to attend either a substance abuse program or a special DUI school. If you do not fulfill all the requirements of the courses, your license will not be reinstated at the end of the 90 day suspension.

A second DUI conviction that occurs within approximately 5 years of the previous conviction will result in the loss of your driver’s license for an entire year. During this period your license will not be reinstated for any purpose including driving to work privileges. A second offense also brings some jail time along with it. You could end up being in jail for 48 hours or up to 1 year. Individuals who are convicted a second time can choose 20 days of community service rather than spend 48 hours in jail.

The penalties continue to build up the more offenses you have culminating in a fourth D.U.I. conviction. A person who receives 4 convictions in a 5 year period is given a Class C felony charge. This charge brings very severe penalties with it. Your license can be taken away for 5 years. You can also be sent to prison for up to 10 years or at the least 1 year. The fines are quite heavy, ranging from around $4,000 to $10,000, depending on the circumstances surrounding your case.

Defense Strategies for Alabama DUI Charges

It is of the utmost importance that you hire a lawyer to represent you in court when you face DUI charges. There are many benefits to having a professional DUI defense attorney represent your case in court. A professional attorney in this field can go over the evidence, such as the breath and blood tests to make sure they are accurate. Many of these lawyers help clients avoid conviction by proving that the test results were not valid. A good lawyer will also make sure that there is fair jury selection so that your rights to a fair trial are protected and enforced.