DUI

9 Hidden Costs Of A DUI And How To Avoid Them

DUI, or Driving under the influence, is not illegal per se, however, it’s not recommended in any way. Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol cannot possibly end well. Even if you don’t end up in an accident and everyone goes unscathed – if you get pulled over and deemed unable to drive, things are about to get really ugly for you. There are all kinds of consequences at play here – from having a slumber party at the local jail and your driver’s license getting suspended to losing thousands upon thousands of dollars in various fines and hidden costs. Today, we’re going to talk about those hidden costs which you may not know about, how they can change your life for the worse and ultimately how you can avoid them. Let’s get started.

1. Fines & Court And Attorney Fees

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The first and one of the major costs of DUI is not exactly a hidden one, but the amount might surprise you. If you manage to avoid jail time, community service, licence suspension and all of the usual punishments – you probably had the best lawyer in the world. However, you’re not going to get out of paying fines, court costs and eventually the attorney’s fee. Now, costs can vary significantly, depending on the state, how intoxicated you were, whether you had to post bail or not and more. On average, all of this is going to cost around $5000. You could end up paying less, but you could also end up paying upwards of the $10,000.

2. Towing And Impound Fee

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Considering the fact that you’re unable to drive, being arrested for drunk driving and all that, your vehicle is getting towed and impounded. As we all know, this fee is everything but insignificant. You could end up paying between $500 and $1000 to get your car back.

3. Education Program Costs

According to Dmvedu.org, what usually happens after a DUI conviction is that the convicted party has to go through some sort of drug or alcohol education program. If you’re lucky, you might end up with an 8-hour online class, but that’s highly unlikely. However, ending up in group counselling or months of classes doesn’t happen that often, as well. In most cases, you’ll end up with 30 to 60 hours of online classes if this was your first offence. Once again, your bank account will feel it since this could cost you $700 or more.

4. Reinstatement Fee

Now, once you lose your driver’s licence – you don’t just get it back, you have to pay a reinstatement fee which will set you back about $500 in most cases.

5. Insurance Costs

Now, these are the ones you should really be worried about. After a DUI conviction, in the eyes of the insurance company, you’re a high-risk driver, which means, your premium costs are about to skyrocket. Now, this could vary, but in most cases, you would see an annual increase from a $1000 to even $3000 in your premiums. Now, keep in mind that this is not a one-year thing. Chances are you’ll be considered high-risk for at least 5 years. You do the math on that one.

6. BAIID

Source:illinois-defenseattorney.com

This breath analysing device is going to be in your car for a year after you’ve been convicted of a DUI. Once you factor in all the costs like installation, rental fees, monitoring and so on, you’re looking at another $1500 out of your bank account.

7. Income Or Job Loss

If you’re lucky and you don’t end up fired you’re looking at least one month of ‘unpaid vacation’. If we take an average American salary, for example, that means you’re looking to lose another $4000 for not being able to work. If you lose your job on the other hand – only you know how much that will cost you.

Now, spending money on lawyercarl is something that you’re aware of and you’re paying for a good service – the one you actually need, so that’s okay. However, if we do the quick math, in the best case scenario – ‘hidden’ costs will set you back at least $10,000. On average, we’re looking at $20,000 to $25,000 and if you’re really unlucky, well, let’s not go there. It could ruin your life, let’s keep it at that. Keep in mind, that’s a first offence we’re talking about. Repeated offenders can and will lose a lot more than that.

Now, how can you avoid them?

8. Hire A Good Lawyer

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A good lawyer can get your case dismissed. This is by far the best thing you can hope for in case you’re arrested for DUI. Not only will it benefit your financial situation, but it’ll affect the other aspects of your life as well. Not serving jail time, avoiding training and counselling, not paying high-risk insurance rates – this could save you a lot of money and emotional trauma. Even a night in county jail could leave some scars.

9. Keep Of The Road

This is the best advice anyone could give you. Want to save money and not end up handcuffed in the back of the police car? Don’t drink and drive. It’s as simple as that. You may feel like you’re more than capable of operating a vehicle and even if that’s true – don’t do it. You might injure yourself or the others. If you get pulled over and your BAC is over 0.08 an officer has a right to arrest you. You could be at 0.09 and feel absolutely sober – you could still end up arrested.

So, if you’ve had a few drinks – call a cab, phone a friend, order an Uber or just walk home. There are so many things you could do instead of sitting behind the wheel. Everyone’s unreasonable when they’re under the influence, we get that. However, try and reason with yourself and listen to others if they tell you not to drive.

If none of this matters to you because you just have more money than you could possibly spend and you don’t care about the costs – think about the risks. Over 10,000 people die annually in accident caused by drunk drivers. Over 300,000 are injured in some way. Don’t be a part of that statistic, don’t drive under the influence.

What To Do If You Get a Traffic Ticket in 2020

If you have received a ticket for an offense like speeding, disobeying signs or driving under the influence, you may decide you want to fight this traffic ticket in court. There are a lot of things that can go into making this decision, from the type of ticket you received to whether or not you can fight it yourself or need a lawyer.

Hiring a lawyer will be helpful if you have been ticketed with a serious offense that could lead to losing your license or even going to jail, but smaller infractions like parking violations may not require legal assistance. Something like a DUI is more serious, so be sure to get more on this site.

Your first step in deciding to fight your ticket is to figure out what kind of traffic tickets you have received. In the United States, most traffic tickets are split between “minor violations,” also known as infractions or civil charges, and criminal charges. The difference between these can vary from state to state or municipality to municipality.

Source:wikihow.com

A minor infraction could be something like not wearing a seatbelt, driving without a license or insurance, or parking on the wrong side of the street. You may want to pay the fine and plead guilty or contest it in court.
What Happens In Court

In order to fight your ticket, you need to request a hearing with the court. Depending on your state or city, your hearing may be seen by a judge or a magistrate. The ticketing officer will be subpoenaed and must be present at the trial. If the officer is unable to attend, your date may be rescheduled or the judge may dismiss your charge altogether.

While contesting your ticket, you have the option to plead guilty with an explanation. This is essentially entering a plea deal, so that the court may reduce the impact of your charges. For example, if you were ticketed for a traffic violation that occurred when you were trying to avoid a collision, the judge may decide to give a lower fine or avoid charges altogether.

If your ticket contains a ‘fatal flaw,’ the court can dismiss the ticket entirely. These flaws include your name, the date or the location of the infraction missing from the ticket.

What About Your Driving Record?

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After receiving a traffic ticket, your record with the DMV will be updated. Your driving record will include the status of your license, and any tickets, convictions, or suspensions you’ve received. States have different point systems, which remove points from your license for each infraction. For example, a speeding ticket may have two demerit points, whereas failing to stay at the scene of a collision can be worth seven points. After receiving a certain amount of punitive points, you are at risk of having your license suspended entirely. If you are unsure of what is on your driving record, you can request a copy from the DMV.

It is possible to have tickets expunged from your record. Some offenses stay on your record for a certain amount of time, like five years for speeding. More serious offenses, like vehicular homicide, will stay on for life. This varies from state to state. In order to have the tickets expunged, you might need to meet certain prerequisites like attending a driving course or keeping a clean record for a certain number of years. You may also have to pay a fee. This will also vary by state. Check with your local DMV to see what your requirements are and if it is possible to have a ticket cleared from your record.

When Should You Call a Lawyer?

If you have received a ticket for a minor offense like speeding, you may not need a lawyer. However, if you are facing a serious offense like a DUI, you should look for legal help. A traffic lawyer can help you by doing the following:

Negotiating with the judge or prosecutor on your behalf to get a lower fine or lesser charge.
A lawyer can also negotiate if you are at risk of losing your license because of multiple infractions.
A lawyer can represent you in court. This is especially useful if you received a ticket in another state or city while traveling.
Avoid felony convictions. A lawyer can review your case, challenge the arrest, request to see the arresting officer’s notes and create an argument on why your charges should be dismissed, or secure a not guilty verdict in court.
Your lawyer can also arrange a plea deal, ensuring you get the best possible deal. This can include getting probation or community service, as opposed to jail time.

What You Shouldn’t Do

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Avoiding paying your fine or missing a court appearance for your ticket could cause serious problems for you in the long run. The court can issue a warrant, your driver’s license could be suspended and your fines may increase or be sent to collections. Your car may even be towed.

A suspended license is temporary and often will be reinstated after you pay your fine and wait for a period of time decided by the courts. However, if your license is revoked, you lose your driving privileges and will have to reapply for a license after a minimum of one year.

If you’ve decided to challenge your ticket in court, and don’t have a lawyer, you should be careful to make clear and rational arguments as to why your charges should be dismissed. For example, accusing the ticketing officer of lying or being mistaken without any proof will not be accepted by a judge. You should also avoid downplaying the severity of your infraction, like defending yourself by saying no one was injured or you weren’t speeding by a lot. The judge may find you irresponsible and less likely to dismiss your charges.

Conclusion

If you receive a traffic ticket, it doesn’t have to mean bad news. Whether you want to fight your ticket in court, get your record expunged or make use of a legal team, there are lots of avenues for you to take to get back on the road and away from the courts.

Facing a DUI Charge? Why Hiring a Lawyer Makes Sense

For the most part, you’re the type of person who chooses to understand the traffic laws and abide by them. Even so, there are times when you’re tempted to do something that’s not in your best interests. Recently, that led to an allegation of driving under the influence. Rather than trying to deal with the charge on your own, it makes sense to seek out a lawyer who can provide counsel and work with you to deal with the cost. Here are some examples of how the lawyer can help.

Explaining the Current Laws Related to Driving Under the Influence

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How much do you know about the laws that apply to your case? If you’re like most people, you have no more than a rudimentary understanding of those laws. Even research online will only provide so much additional information. The only way to truly delve into current laws about driving under the influence or impaired driving is to talk with a lawyer.

There are provisions of law that the lawyer will mention. The Charter of Rights and Freedoms, a part of the Constitution that includes information related to driving under the influence and impaired driving, is primarily what the lawyer will go over with you. This will be important as the lawyer begins to investigate the circumstances surrounding the arrest.

Your lawyer will point out specifics that apply in your case. That includes some ideas on what has occurred with similar cases in the past. One or more of those legal precedents may be especially helpful. In this way, you will begin to grasp what could happen if the court decides to convict you.

Going Over the Options for Your Defense

You can rest assured that DUI lawyers such as Mass Tsang, will tirelessly work to win your case or to ensure the lowest possible penalty. That means mounting a defense that’s designed to protect your rights from beginning to end.

Since there may be more than one possible way to pursue that defense, expect your lawyer to go over the potential associated with each strategy. You’ll get an idea of how each approach could turn out. That includes what might happen if you go with a particular procedure, and the court still finds that you’re guilty.

This is important since you need to understand the possible ramifications of each approach. The lawyer will point out the potential benefits, but also the worst-case scenarios associated with each one. This equips you with the information needed to determine which direction the defense should move.

Exploring the Actions of Law Enforcement

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Part of the preliminary work that the lawyer will perform is assessing the actions of law enforcement as it relates to your case. That includes what occurred from the time the officers first approached you to be released on bond at the police station. If there is any indication that one or more officers infringed on your rights or failed to follow the procedures required by law, that may be grounds to have the entire matter dismissed.

There are specific protocols that the police are required to follow. The moment that they approach you after believing they have reasonable cause to assume that you’ve been drinking or ingesting any substance in the last three hours, their actions must be in line with the Charter of Rights and Freedoms. If they fail to do any of the following, your legal counsel may have grounds to fight the case.

The authorities are required to state that they are approaching you for suspicion of a possible roadside offense, but they are not necessary to say what type of offense. In cases of this nature, they will first administer what’s known as a Standardized Field Sobriety Test. This is composed of simple tests like walking a straight line or standing on one leg. If you pass this test, they may also ask you to take a breathalyzer test. This can provide an accurate reading of that amount of booze in your blood. They may also take a blood sample.

What you need to remember is that while the officer may phrase these tests as if they are asking for your cooperation, current laws in the GTA don’t require them to obtain your permission. You are required by law to comply. If you refuse, the officer has the right to arrest you. The result is likely to be a fine and possibly a one-year suspension of your driving privileges. If there’s a prior offense on your record, you could face a year in jail for noncompliance.

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Once the tests are done, the officer will inform you if you passed or failed. If your blood booze level is near the legal limit, you’re likely to receive a warning if you’ve been cooperative up to this point. Those who are over the legal limit will be placed under arrest.

The officer will state that you are being arrested for a specific offense and advise you of your Charter of Rights, including the right to say nothing at this point – your right to speak with a lawyer or to seek legal aid. The nature of secondary police precautions that will be taken as you are transported to the police station. After the office is finished, you now have the right to contact your legal counsel or arrange for legal representation.

Remember that your right to say nothing remains intact while you wait for your legal counsel to arrive at the station. If any attempts are made to obtain additional information about your actions before or during the arrest are made, you have to say that you do not discuss the events until you consult with your legal counsel.

Seeking the Best Possible Outcome

Throughout the process, your legal counsel will work within the limits of the law to secure the best possible outcome for your case. That could mean amending the defense strategy if some new evidence comes to light, such as a witness who saw what transpired and comes forward to provide an account. It could also mean seeking to provide the court with reasons to grant some degree of leniency based on the fact that this is the first offense.

Remember that the lawyer cannot guarantee the outcome. What the lawyer will pledge is to provide you with legal counsel designed to help you through this current issue. Make the most of that pledge and cooperate in every way you can. Doing so will make it easier to work toward an outcome that is in your best interests.

The Crime Of Driving Under the Influence (DUI), its Penalties, and a Few Tips to Help You if You’re Stuck

A DUI (short for “Driving under the Influence”) is always a compromising situation. Not only does one have to deal with the legal ramifications, but they must also deal with the social stigma that comes with it. Chances are that your mug shot will come to public light and you’ll not only be dealing with the cops and the court system, but you’ll also need to find, and pay for, an experienced DUI lawyer to get you out of the jam.

This comprehensive guide will speak to the punishments and penalties of DUI offenses in the state of Colorado and will give you a few tips to take with you if you’re unfortunate enough to be stuck in that situation. Remember, this is not a “how-to” guide and in no way does this guide endorse drinking and driving, which is not only dangerous for the person behind the wheel but even more so for bystanders and can cost someone their life.

Colorado DUI Offences and Penalties

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While a misdemeanor crime in Colorado, the punishments and ramifications are still costly. If your ability to safely operate a vehicle is substantially impaired due to being under the influence of alcohol, you are considered as having committed a DUI. Your blood alcohol level must be 0.8% or higher for you to be booked under a DUI charge. Anything below that would count as DWAI (Driving While Ability Impaired) and is subject to different penalties and punishments.

Under the laws of Colorado, those committing a DUI offense for the first time are liable to prison time which can range from anywhere between 5 days and 1 year. In addition, you would also be liable to a fine of $600 to $1000 and 96 hours of community service. Furthermore, your license would also be suspended for 9 months. For second-time offenders, the jail time stays the same but the fine can go up to $1500 with a 1-year suspension of your license, and 120 hours of community service. Additionally, you also need to have an ignition interlock installed in your car, at your own expense, for two years after your license is reinstated.

The punishment for the third offense is the same as the second offense except for the license suspension which goes to 2 years for third-time DUI offenders. Your fourth offense is where DUI stops being a misdemeanor and the ramifications are life-altering. If you’re convicted for a fourth DUI offense, then you could be liable for a fine of up to $500,000, 6 years in a Colorado state penitentiary, and 3-year mandatory parole.

All of the above is subject to your blood alcohol level being above 0.8% and below 0.15%. If you go higher than this range, even on your first DUI offense, you’ll be treated as a repeat offender and be subject to very strict punishments and penalties.

Source:camadecolawgroup.com

Refusing to take the test can cause more problems

By applying for, and successfully getting your Colorado driving license, you’re automatically consenting to a blood alcohol level test by the authorities. As such, you can’t refuse to take the test unless you want your license suspended for 1 year. What’s worse is that you don’t simply get your license back upon the expiry of the suspension period. You need to install an ignition interlock device in your car, at your own expense, if you want to get your license back and if you want to keep your license further, then you need to have the device installed for two years.

The above is only what happens when you refuse to take the test. If the police have reasonable cause, they can still charge you for DUI and submit your refusal to take the test as evidence. If you actually have had a drink and been driving, then chances are your refusal would be enough to cause a few problems for you in front of a court of law.

Hire a Lawyer

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While the prospect of representing yourself may seem dramatic and Hollywood-esque, it’s seldom a smart idea and will likely cause more problems than there are, to begin with. As you can see from the above, DUIs are no laughing matter and you need an experienced Denver DUI lawyer to be able to deal with everything. In addition to the police, there’s also the district attorney to deal and negotiate with and the court itself which has numerous procedural formalities.

Therefore, it would be much better if you were to just hire a lawyer to deal with everything. If you live in Denver and are unfortunate enough to find yourself in a DUI situation, then you could contact a service like M. Trent Trani & Associates, P.C. at tranicriminaldefense.com/dui

It is important to find a  reliable attorney or firm that could help you and represent you in the best way possible.

Don’t confess to everything just because of the blood alcohol concentration test

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Just because your blood alcohol concentration tests came back to your detriment does not mean that all is lost. The BAC test is one of the foundation stones of the case but a lot more is needed for a conviction. There are ways to challenge these tests based on procedural mistakes and negligence in the handling of evidence. An experienced DUI lawyer would even go to the extent of calling into question the machines that were used in the testing and the credibility of the lab.

Have your blood tested at an independent lab

According to the law, two vials of blood are to be collected from the person being accused of a DUI. One of these vials will be used by the DA to carry out testing and to prove their case. The other vial is kept for the accused to have their blood tested independently from a lab of their choosing. It is vital that you exercise this option as even the smallest difference in test results can be enough for an experienced lawyer to have the charges reduced or have the entire case thrown out altogether.

Driving under the influence comes with many consequences, and unfortunately, it isn’t uncommon to see it during the holiday season. With more people consuming alcohol and more people on the roads, it can be a recipe for disaster, according to Stokes Stemle, LLC. In the event of accident, it’s so important to seek help from an experienced attorney as soon as possible.