What is a DUI?

by | Mar 12, 2014 | Law And Legal Services


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Driving while under the influence of alcohol is a serious criminal act. It is hard enough as it is to maintain control of a motor vehicle when sober, let alone when under the influence of alcohol. One of the leading causes of traffic accidents is driving while intoxicated; as a result of these findings every state has established very strict laws when it comes to treating those found driving while intoxicated. The law is called DUI or DWI which is the same; it just means driving while intoxicated.

If a policeman sees that you appear to be driving erratically, the officer has the legal right to pull the car over. If the officer suspects a DUI in Newport Beach, perhaps there is a strong smell of alcohol or your speech may be slurred, you can be asked to take a sobriety test in the field which is used to determine if you may be intoxicated. The law states that a DUI charge cannot be pressed against a driver only through suspicion, there must be an actual determination.

If you fail the field test you will be asked to undergo a blood alcohol content test using a breathalyzer or drawing blood. The legal limit varies but in the majority of states the BAC, blood alcohol content must not exceed 0.08%. If you fail this test you will be charged with a DUI in Newport Beach.

Although the majority of states adhere to 0.08% as the maximum BAC, a few states have set the legal limit at 0.10% and for drivers under the legal drinking age the states are very tough, most do not tolerate any BAC although some will allow 0.02%. Regardless of age, if a driver is booked on a DUI charge he or she will immediately be placed in a holding cell for a length of time at least long enough to sober up.

Many states adhere to a progressive DUI policy when meting out punishment. This being the case a first offender may not be given the full penalty allowed by law. A first offended may find that their driving privileges are revoked for up to a year; they may be fined or given community service. A second offense may find the driver in jail.

If you have been arrested and charged with a DUI in Newport Beach you should consider hiring a lawyer. You are invited to contact the law offices of Christopher J. McCann.