A charge of Driving Under the Influence (DUI) can have far-reaching and long-lasting consequences to your life.

Even a first-time DUI arrest has stiff penalties, including a six to twelve month suspension of your driver’s license, fines and court costs, a court-ordered alcohol evaluation, probation for up to two years, and a conviction of DUI on your driver’s license.

What is the first thing I should do after getting a DUI?

Once you have been released from police custody following a DUI, you should find a lawyer who is experienced in defending those accused of DUI. Your arraignment, which is the first step of the trial process, will occur within a few days of your DUI arrest. You gain nothing and risk everything if you don’t have adequate legal representation.  Being convicted of DUI carries with it costs and penalties that can be more expensive than your defense fees, though this will vary depending on the location and complexity of your case (for instance, if you are a repeat offender, or if your DUI involves serious injuries or resulted in a death).

How should I plead at my arraignment?

When the judge asks how you will plead, the best answer to give — indeed, the only answer you should give  — is not guilty. Pleading guilty or no contest will seriously hurt any chance you have of beating the charge or having the severity of the fines and penalties levied against you reduced.  Even if you feel that you have no chance of winning your case, your lawyer may see things differently.

Will my license be suspended following a DUI arrest?

Your license will be suspended automatically following a DUI arrest, though not until the 46th day after the date of your DUI arrest.  You will  receive a notice of Statutory Summary Suspension which suspends your license for a period of 6 – 24 months.  You may still drive up to the 46th day after you have received notice of summary suspension.

Can my statutory summary summary be challenged?

You have 90 days from the date of your DUI arrest to challenge the summary suspension, but it’s in your best interest to challenge it before the supension automatically goes into effect.

Can I drive during my statutory summary suspension?

You will not be allowed to drive during the first 30 days of the suspension.  First time DUI offenders may apply for a Monitoring Device Driving Permit (MDDP) which allows an individual to drive upon the installation of a Breath Ignition Interlock Device (BAIID); however, regardless of whether or not you are approved for an MDDP, you cannot drive during the first 30 days of the suspension.

How long is a statutory summary suspension?

If you are a first time DUI offender, the minimum length of your license suspension is 6 months, provided that you did not refuse a chemical test (breathalyzer, urine sample, or blood sample) and your blood-alcohol concentration is 0.08 or greater.  If you refused chemical testing at the time of your arrest, then your minimum license suspension will be 12 months.  In certain circumstances, your summary suspension can last as long as 24 months.

Can a DUI Attorney help my case?

Depending on the extent and severity of other charges that may be pending against you in conjunction with your DUI arrest, your driving privileges can be affected for months or years, which in turn can impact your freedom, personal life, marriage, livelihood, employment eligibility,  insurance rates, and so on. Having an experienced DUI attorney on your side can make a significant difference in the outcome of your case.  Among other things, we can aggressively challenge the suspension of your license, help you retain driving privileges while waiting for your case to be tried, or even challenge the validity of the case against you.  Contact The Law Office of Scott W. Brammer today at 815-344-4040 for a free initial consultation in your DUI case.