A DUI/DWI conviction carries serious consequences that may include license suspension, fines, and even jail time. Many factors come into play and an experienced attorney can help ensure that your rights are protected. Clients charged with drunk driving in Shelby County can rely on Jim Pino & Associates, P.C. in Pelham, Alabama, to help them. Contact our firm today to learn more about your rights and options.
Criminal and Civil Components to a DUI
There are both civil and criminal components to DUI charges in Alabama. The first step in handling your DUI/DWI case is to preserve your right to drive while your case is working its way through the criminal court system. The Alabama Department of Public Safety handles administrative hearings after a DUI arrest. You have only 10 days from the date of your arrest to request a hearing with the Department of Public Safety to hold onto your driver's license. There is no presumption of innocence on the civil side and usually your license will be automatically suspended beginning 45 days after your arrest unless a hearing is scheduled.
Your driver's license is at stake. Contact a DUI lawyer at Jim Pino & Associates, P.C. today.
Of course, there is also the criminal side to DUI. If you are convicted of DUI, and it is your first offense, you could spend up to 365 days in jail and be fined $600.-2,100. You must enter a court-supervised substance abuse program, and your driver's license will be suspended for 90 days. The first three DUI/DWI offenses are misdemeanors. A fourth DUI/DWI offense can be Class C felony with steeper penalties, including jail time ranging from one to ten years, and fines ranging from $4,100.-10,100.
In a DUI/DWI case, there are a number of technical defenses that attorney Jim Pino can employ in defending you. Sometimes, the breathalyzer used was not properly calibrated. The arresting officer who used the machine may not have been qualified, or may not have been properly trained. The way in which the field sobriety test was administered may not have been according to standard procedure. The arresting offices may not have had a legitimate reason for stopping your vehicle.
Many times, we have gotten deferred prosecution for first-time offenders, wiping their record clean if they stay out of trouble. Pretrial diversion involves attending treatment and Alcoholics Anonymous meetings and sometimes participating in community service. After one year, your DUI/DWI charge could be dismissed.
For more information or to schedule an appointment with an experienced drunk driving defense lawyer, please contact us.