Driving under the influence (DUI) is a serious charge, and it can lead to even more serious repercussions without the proper legal guidance from a Miami DUI defense lawyer. Laws governing DUIs vary from state to state. In Florida, an individual doing any of the following could be charged with a DUI:
- For those aged 21 and older, driving any motor vehicle with a blood alcohol content (BAC) of 0.08% or higher.
- For those under the age of 21, driving any motor vehicle with a BAC of 0.02% or higher.
- For those aged 21 and older, driving a commercial vehicle with a BAC of 0.04% or higher.
Even a first-time conviction with a BAC of 0.15 or less can lead to a 6-month jail sentence if not properly defended, in addition to fines ranging from $500 to $1,000 and a suspension of one’s license. If the intoxicated individual’s BAC is higher than 0.15 or a minor is in the vehicle, this fine will range from $1,000 to $2,000, and jail time could amount to 9 months. Furthermore, under Florida’s implied consent law, simply refusing to take a test to determine one’s BAC can result in a yearlong license suspension for a first offense, to an 18-month suspension for a third offense.
Understandably, the more DUI convictions one has on his or her record, the worse the penalty will be. Committing four or more DUIs, or three within 10 years affords an individual with a felony, thus a criminal record. Additionally, if a serious injury or death results from the incident, the charge rises to a felony as well. Given the complex nature of DUI cases and the severity of the associated sentences, guidance from an experienced Miami DUI defense lawyer is critical.