If you have been arrested for driving under the influence (DUI) in Pinellas County, Florida, you should contact criminal defense lawyers. We understand that this may be a very anxious time for you and your loved ones but an arrest does not always result in a conviction. With an experienced DUI lawyer backing your case, you will give yourself the best chance you have of getting your charges dismissed or reduced.
At The Law Place, we have offered legal representation to many people in Pinellas County facing DUI charges. Over the years we have gathered lots of knowledge and experience that can prove to be hugely beneficial to your case.
To seek the help of a reputable DUI lawyer, contact us today for a free consultation at (941)-444-4444.
DUI Charges in Pinellas County
In Pinellas County, driving under the influence (DUI) of alcohol and/ or drugs is a major criminal offense that is penalized severely by the state. You can be arrested for DUI for the following reasons:
- You are caught driving while having a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .08% or higher.
- You are caught driving while your normal faculties are impaired.
The penalties that offenders can face for DUI are severe and can be found outlined under Florida Statute 316.193. A criminal defense attorney will attempt to get your case dropped so you won’t have to serve these penalties.
For a free legal consultation with a dui lawyer serving Pinellas Park, call 941-444-4444
Driving under the influence is also referred to as driving while intoxicated (DWI) and drunk driving in Pinellas County.
If you have consumed alcohol, we strongly urge that you don’t attempt to drive. Even if you feel sober, the Pinellas County court system will serve you severe penalties if you are found to be driving over the legal limit. Driving while intoxicated is dangerous and can risks lives. This is because intoxication can slow down reaction times and cause drivers to make poor errors of judgment.
Innocent mistakes happen and a moment of lapsed judgment should not change your life forever. If you wish to avoid a drunk driving conviction in Pinellas County, you need to contact our criminal defense attorneys immediately.
Pinellas Park DUI Lawyer Near Me 941-444-4444
The Serious Consequences of DUI
DUI cases in Pinellas County are penalized harshly. You should take your arrest seriously. The more previous convictions you have, the more severe the penalties will be. We have outlined some of the typical penalties awarded to specific DUI cases below.
First DUI Conviction
If you are facing your first DUI conviction, you are more likely to get your case dismissed than a serial offender. However, you should still reach out to a DUI defense attorney.
If you have a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) below .15%, you can receive the following penalties for a conviction:
- A fine of up to $1,000.
- Up to six months of jail time.
- Community service for 50 hours.
- Up to one year of probation.
- Vehicle impoundment for ten days
- A suspension to your driving privileges.
Second DUI Conviction
When a person experiences multiple DUI arrests, they can expect to be penalized with harsher and harsher penalties. The amount of time between convictions can also impact the severity of the penalties that an offender receives. For example, a second conviction for DUI within five years of your first conviction can result in you serving jail time. In these DUI cases, a judge will likely impose a minimum jail sentence of 10 days.
Further penalties that offenders could receive for their second conviction include:
- A fine of up to $2,000.
- Up to nine months of jail time.
- One year of probation.
- Vehicle impoundment for 30 days.
- Installation of an ignition interlock device for at least six months.
- Suspension of driving privileges.
You may be charged with a felony conviction in Pinellas County if you commit a third or subsequent DUI offense within 10 years of your first offense. A felony conviction is far more severe than a misdemeanor conviction. This is because guilty offenders will be required to pay hefty fines and serve lengthy jail sentences.
If you are facing a felony conviction in Pinellas County, you must contact DUI attorneys. These are serious charges that must be fought strongly. Receiving a felony conviction can change the lives of you and your loved ones forever.
At The Law Place, our DUI attorneys can build you a solid defense case. We will do everything we can to defend your legal rights and interests while persuasively arguing for the dismissal or reduction of your charges. A lot of DUI charges can be reduced to reckless driving charges. Receiving a conviction for reckless driving instead of a felony DUI conviction will carry far less severe penalties. It is also possible for criminal defense attorneys to get reckless driving charges expunged from your criminal record.
Boating DUI Offenses
Florida law states that it is illegal for a person to drive a boat under the influence of alcohol and/ or drugs. Many people assume that DUI laws only apply to road users, but this is not the case. If a law enforcement officer discovers you have a blood alcohol concentration of .08% or higher, you can be arrested.
The penalties handed to offenders who are caught operating their boats under the influence are equally as severe as the penalties handed to road users. Depending on certain factors of the case, it is likely that an offender will have to pay a hefty fine, complete a DUI program, and serve jail time.
We understand that mistakes happen, you may not have even been aware of Florida DUI boating laws. Our Pinellas County DUI lawyers are here to help you. The sooner you contact our team, the better.
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Can I Drive After One Alcoholic Drink in Pinellas Park, FL?
You can drive after one drink of alcohol in Pinellas County if your blood alcohol concentration (BAC) is less than .08%. However, our law firm would strongly urge that no one gets behind the wheel if they have consumed alcohol. Not only is driving under the influence very dangerous, but it is very difficult for someone to know what their BAC is. Furthermore, a law enforcement officer is within their right to arrest a person if they believe their normal faculties are impaired.
On average, a person’s body can process and break down one alcoholic drink every hour. When a person consumes more alcohol than what their body can process, they become intoxicated. Although you may feel sober after one drink, it is very easy for your BAC to slip above the legal limit. Furthermore, one drink of alcohol to one person will mean something completely different to another.
The measurement of one drink of alcohol will depend on the substance being consumed. For example, one drink of whiskey equates to 1.5 ounces, whereas one drink of beer equates to 12 ounces.
DUI Charge on a Driving Record
Receiving a conviction for DUI in Pinellas County, Florida, can be very frustrating. Not only will you have to serve severe penalties, but it will also stain your driving record. These convictions remain on driving records for 75 years. For most offenders, this will be the rest of their lifetimes.
This stain on your driving record can be very frustrating as it will more than likely result in your insurance rates increasing. It will also prevent you from gaining professional licenses. If you wish to drive commercially in the future, you need to do all you can to avoid being convicted of DUI.
DUI Charge on a Criminal Record
Unlike a DUI conviction on a driving record, this conviction will remain on a criminal record for life. There is also nothing that a person can do to get the conviction expunged. In some criminal cases, offenders can work with their criminal defense lawyers to get their convictions removed from their records. This is not possible in DUI cases.
This potential stain on your criminal record can be hugely frustrating. Some of the consequences of having a criminal record include:
- Difficulty in securing bank loans and mortgages.
- Difficulty traveling internationally.
- Restricted future employment opportunities
What You Should Do if You Are Stopped by a Police Officer
Experiencing an arrest can be very overwhelming. It is normal for a person to feel anxious and nervous. The best thing you can do is to try and remain calm. Below we have stated some advice that may help you at the scene of an arrest.
Take the Breathalyzer Test
If a law enforcement officer suspects that you are driving under the influence, they will more than likely ask to you complete a breathalyzer test and field sobriety tests. The best thing you can do is cooperate with the officer. If you refuse to complete the breathalyzer test, you may face additional criminal charges.
Our DUI lawyers are aware that breathalyzer test results are not always accurate. The devices are prone to produce skewed results. Following your arrest, your DUI lawyer will investigate your arrest and how the breathalyzer device was used. If your lawyer can prove that your test was administered incorrectly, or if the officer was not qualified to administer the test, your charges could be dropped. This is why it is worth hiring a DUI defense lawyer. They will go above and beyond to ensure that you can get your charges dismissed.
Avoid Making a Statement
At the scene of an arrest, you should be polite to the law enforcement officers but only answer the simple and necessary questions. You should avoid making a statement or admitting fault. Anything you say during your arrest can be held against your case. It is important to withhold details before you have had the chance to speak to a DUI attorney. Once you have contacted a DUI attorney, they can advise you on what you should say to law enforcement officials.
How Can Pinellas County DUI Lawyers Help Me?
Our team of DUI lawyers at The Law Place can help you in a variety of ways. The first thing we can do to help you is offer some honest and unbiased legal advice in your free consultation with us. In this meeting, we will outline all of your legal options
Then, if you decide to hire one of our lawyers, they will immediately try as secure a driving permit for you. If you contact us quickly after your arrest, you may be able to secure a permit that would allow you to use your vehicle while you await the outcome of your case.
Your lawyer will also be able to investigate your case to build you a solid defense strategy. They will represent your case in court, guide you through the legal proceedings, be a shoulder to lean on, and more. Our help is endless. Your lawyer will not stop fighting until you have received a favorable outcome to your case.
Can DUI Attorneys Get Cases Dismissed?
There are many possible defenses that a DUI attorney can use to get your charges dismissed in Pinellas County. Although it is often difficult to get DUI charges reduced or dropped, it’s not impossible. Many people who have previous convictions for DUI-related offenses assume that it is not worth fighting a further conviction. This is not the case. Regardless of whether you are facing your first or fifth DUI conviction, these charges are always worth fighting.
A criminal defense attorney will investigate your case to build you a strong defense. If your attorney can prove your innocence or that law enforcement acted unlawfully in your case, there is a great chance that your charges will be dismissed.
Contact The Law Place Today!
If you have been arrested for DUI in Pinellas County, you need to act quickly. The sooner you act, the more time you will allow a DUI attorney to build you a strong defense strategy. Our law firm has a reputable team of criminal defense attorneys who will do all they can to ensure that you achieve the best possible outcome from your case.
Our DUI lawyers serve clients across the whole state of Florida and our other practice areas include personal injury law, family law, and corporate law. No matter your legal needs, The Law Place can help you.
To find out about all of the legal options available to you, call us today to schedule your free consultation at (941)-444-4444.