When you are arrested for a DUI, undoubtedly you will want to know what happens next. The consequences are great and many. If you get convicted for a DUI, you will lose your job, your driving license, your vehicle and you might face jail time as well. You are at risk of being arrested for a DUI if you have been partying all night and decide to drive home on your own. You might think that you can hold your liquor, but in reality you might not be able to do so. When a police officer suspects you of drunk driving, they will start to tape your driving via their dashboard camera. They might also receive an anonymous tip about a drunk driver and they will have a good reason to pull you over if they suspect you are drunk.
Infographic Created By Zoukis Consulting Group, Providing Legal Assistance to Those Incarcerated in the Federal Bureau of Prisons
Once the officer pulls you over, he will come by your window and ask you if you had any drink that evening. Once you admit to having a few drinks you have given the officer the very reason he needs to perform sobriety tests on you. Although these field tests that they perform are voluntary, the officers will neglect to mention this to you. The standard test that they will administer is the preliminary breathalyzer test or PBT. This test is actually an oxymoron, if you refuse to take the test you will be admitting guilt because why would you refuse it if you were not drinking? In most states, if you refuse to take a breathalyzer test, your driving license will be revoked or suspended and if you are found to be guilty of driving under the influence you will not be able to get a restricted drivers license as well.
Another example is, say you have been drinking, but only a little and you decide to drive home, maybe just a few miles away. Then, all of a sudden you get pulled over by the police and they ask you to take breathalyzer test. You agree to it and it shows less than 0.8% which is the legal blood alcohol limit. Unsatisfied, the officers ask you to wait on the scene with them, asking you all types of questions to pass the time. What you do not know is your blood alcohol limit (BAC) continues to rise and by the time they do the chemical testing, you would have exceeded the legal blood alcohol limit and you can be formally charged with drunk driving. Then your ordeal starts. You will have to spend the night in jail, and if convicted you can spend up to a year in jail. Depending on your case you could end up paying a few hundred dollars to a few thousand dollars. Hiring a lawyer in your area would cost anywhere from $2,000 to $5,000.
Your license will be revoked by the DMV and you will need to attend a hearing to decide if you are fit to drive or not. As a result of your DUI offense, your insurance will cost 3 to 5 times more than what you would normally pay.
If by chance you get to hire a reasonably good lawyer than you might be able to get the charges against you reduced or you could negotiate a good plea. This is of course better than spending time in jail or losing your driver’s license.