The State of Florida takes DUI offenses very seriously, as they can lead to felony charges. Criminal charges will depend on several factors, including the severity of the incident. Driving under the influence of alcohol, drugs, any type of illegal substance, and sometimes even legal substances may have DUI offenders facing serious criminal charges. Having the right criminal defense attorney in North Port for legal advice can make all the difference in your case when you are accused of committing a crime.
For DUI offenses, having a blood alcohol content (BAC) level at or above 0.08% or lacking control over your faculties is all it takes to be charged. The case is aggravated if the driver is found guilty of multiple DUI or DWI offenses within a given period of time, which can end in a felony conviction with fines as high as $5,000 as per Florida Statute 775.083. Hire a skilled criminal defense attorney in North Port to handle your case and protect your legal rights today.
With seventy-five years of collective experience in North Port and the State of Florida, The Law Place can help you fight charges involving driving under the influence. Our law firm understands the complexity of DUI cases and can handle your criminal defense case efficiently. A DUI charge is a serious problem, so qualified legal representation is a must when fighting your case.
Call today to schedule a free consultation and speak to a skilled DUI lawyer in North Port, FL., who can answer all your questions. Our lines are open 24 hours a day, seven days a week. So, a criminal defense lawyer will be waiting to hear from you. Contact us now at (941) 444-4444 for a free consultation. The criminal defense team at The Law Place will help you fight your North Port DUI case.
What Is Considered Driving Under the Influence in North Port, FL?
When someone drives under the influence in North Port, Florida, they may be charged under Florida Statute 316.193, which states that a person is guilty if the person was driving a vehicle or was physically in control of a vehicle in the State of Florida, as well as:
- The person was under the influence of alcohol or any type of substance as per Florida Statute 877.111 or Chapter 893, and the person’s normal faculties were impaired.
- The person’s blood alcohol content (BAC) level was at or above 0.08 grams of alcohol per 100 ml of blood, or they have a BAC of at least 0.08 grams of alcohol per 210 L of breath.
Driving Under the Influence (DUI) Laws and Penalties in North Port, Florida
The severity of the crime and the person’s prior convictions will determine the penalties if they are arrested, charged, and found guilty of DUI.
An individual will face the following for a DUI conviction:
- Fines – An individual convicted of a first-time DUI is subject to a fine between $500 and $1,000. However, should that person get a second DUI conviction, they will be subject to a fine between $1,000 and $2,000 for that second offense.
- Jail time – An individual convicted of a first-time DUI may be jailed for up to 6 months. However, should that person get a second DUI conviction, it will result in up to 9 months in jail.
- Driver’s license suspension or revocation – According to Florida Statute 322.28. anyone convicted of a first DUI offense could have their license suspended for at least 180 days but no more than a year. However, should that person commit a second DUI within the next 5 years, it would be revoked for at least 5 years.
- Ignition interlock device – The court may request the installation of an ignition interlock device for at least 6 months if the driver’s blood alcohol content (BAC) level is 0.08 or above. However, the installation will be mandatory for a period of no less than 6 months, even for a first offense, when the driver’s BAC level is 0.15 or above. These periods will increase in the event of a repeat offender. This will be at the expense of the convicted person and on every vehicle the person owns or leases and routinely drives.
The following penalties will be applied to anyone that has three or more DUI convictions:
- Fines – Anyone convicted of a third DUI within a period of 10 years will be charged with a third-degree felony. Fines can be as high as $5,000. If this third conviction takes place more than 10 years after the last one, the fine would be between $2,000 and $5,000. Further convictions will also be charged as a third-degree felony regardless of when they occurred.
- Jail time – Anyone convicted of a third DUI within a period of 10 years could spend up to 5 years in jail. If this third conviction takes place more than 10 years after the last one, it could result in up to 12 months in jail. Further convictions will be punished with up to 5 years in jail regardless of when they occurred.
- Driver’s license suspended or revocation – Anyone convicted of a third DUI within a period of 10 years will have their license revoked for up to 10 years, as per Florida Statute 322.28. Further convictions will result in a permanent revocation.
- Ignition interlock device – Anyone convicted of a third DUI will have a mandatory installation of an ignition interlock device for up to 2 years. The convicted individual will be responsible for paying for the installation of the device.
Penalties for DUI Accidents Involving Property Damage or Personal Injury in North Port, FL.
According to Florida Statute 316.193, anyone caught driving under the influence that causes an accident resulting in either property damage, serious personal injury or both, will face more severe penalties, on top of the ones from the standard DUI conviction.
Anyone convicted of a DUI offense that has caused or has contributed to property damage or has resulted in physical harm to another person faces a first-degree misdemeanor, with fines of up to $1,000 and a jail sentence of 1 year.
Anyone convicted of a DUI offense that has caused or has contributed to serious bodily injury to another person faces a third-degree felony, with fines of up to $5,000 and a jail sentence of 5 years.
Anyone convicted of a DUI offense that has caused or has contributed to the wrongful death of another person or of an unborn child faces DUI manslaughter, a second-degree felony. The penalties include up to 15 years in jail and fines of up to $10,000. If the person knew or should have known that an accident had taken place but chose to flee the scene and subsequently left the injured person to die, they would be guilty of committing DUI manslaughter, classed as a first-degree felony. In this case, you would face penalties of a jail sentence of up to 30 years and fines of up to $10,000.
What Is the Process in a Florida DUI Charge?
The steps leading up to being arrested and charged with DUI are usually similar in all cases. The reason why you were pulled over may vary, but once you were pulled over, you might have been asked to take a field sobriety test and even a breathalyzer test if the officers had a reason to believe you were intoxicated. The outcome of these tests will determine whether you are arrested and charged.
It is now crucial for you to call and get help with your case by seeking legal advice from an attorney with experience in the appropriate practice areas. By calling the right criminal defense lawyer, your rights will be protected from the moment you call. In the best-case scenario, this will be as soon as you are arrested, as this will give our attorneys the maximum amount of time to work on your defense in North Port. Call The Law Place to speak to a criminal defense attorney for a free consultation on how to handle your case.
Contact The Law Place Today in North Port, Florida
If you are facing criminal charges for DUI in North Port, Florida, we can help. Call today to speak to a criminal defense lawyer who has handled hundreds of cases like yours successfully.
The Law Place defense attorneys have over seventy-five years of combined experience in many different practice areas in Florida. Speak to a North Port DUI lawyer who has experience of DUI cases from clients just like you today. Every DUI defense attorney in our firm is ready to fight for your rights. Let our lawyers help with your DUI defense.
Do not hesitate to call The Law Place today. Our phone lines are open twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week. A criminal defense lawyer will be waiting to hear from you. Contact us now at (941) 444-4444 for a free consultation. Let the lawyers in our practice help you fight your North Port DUI charges.