Your first DUI (Driving Under the Influence) charge is not a matter to take lightly. It is natural to assume that a first violation will result in a lighter sentence than a subsequent one, which is occasionally the case. However, it is necessary to remember that the court is under no obligation to be lenient. In fact, even if you have never violated the law previously, you may still suffer stiff penalties. A DUI-related felony charge can be challenging to manage. The legal process may cause you to feel concerned, upset, or confused.
Make sure you first understand what a DUI is. DUI is Driving Under the Influence of alcohol or a drug that impairs your ability to operate a vehicle. Alcohol and/or prescription medicines can impair your driving capabilities as well. While occasionally prescription drugs may also be involved in a DUI, a DUI charge is typically based on exceeding the allowed level of alcohol consumption before operating a vehicle.
What to know if you are charged with DUI:
Hire a Good Criminal Lawyer
The first thing you should do is hire a leading criminal defense attorney who specializes in handling DUI cases. Having the right attorney by your side can make or break your case.
Expect No Leniency
It is important to remember, that while a first offense may occasionally allow for leniency, that is not guaranteed. The first DUI charge can sometimes be regarded as a misdemeanor violation.
Fines and Community Service
You may be required to pay a fee or undergo community service if it is ultimately determined to be a misdemeanor charge.
Your license is likely to be revoked for a specific time period.
Child on Board
Punishment is often more severe if a child or legally classified minor was in the vehicle at the time. Even for a first violation, you might have to serve time in jail in some circumstances. Repeat offenders are always subject to harsher penalties.
Manage your Finances
A DUI conviction can have financial repercussions. You may miss work while you meet with your lawyer, go to jail, or appear in court. Lost wages may be an outcome of this. Additionally, your insurance rates may increase as well. Your insurance provider may determine you are a higher risk. A DUI conviction frequently comes with some form of Fine. The dollar amount varies based on the sentence and can be costly.
You don’t need to, nor should you handle DUI charges alone. An experienced attorney will best advise you on how to proceed and help you overcome any challenges during the process. They can advocate for you and ensure you receive fair treatment during this period. They can also negotiate the best possible settlement deal especially if other parties were injured.
If you face a first or subsequent DUI charge, learn about your best legal options with a free consultation. At Sneirson Law Firm, we ensure that you receive as fair treatment as possible. Call us today 413-750-8008. Our office is located at 73 Chestnut St., Springfield, MA 01103.