Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs is a serious offense in Florida. Any person charged with a DUI offense can face administrative (driver’s license suspension), criminal (jail time and/or fines), and collateral consequences (loss of a professional license) if convicted.
It is essential that you obtain the assistance of an experienced DUI lawyer as soon as possible following an arrest. Working with a Delray Beach DUI lawyer can be the difference between a conviction and securing a favorable outcome in your case. En Español.
Florida DUI Laws
Under Florida Statutes 316.193, it is an offense to drive or be in physical control of a vehicle when the person:
- is under the influence or alcohol, chemical substance, or controlled substance to the extent that normal faculties are impaired, or
- has a blood alcohol or breath alcohol level of 0.08% or higher
What is Implied Consent?
Florida’s implied consent law establishes that anyone who accepts the privileges of driving in the state, has agreed to submit to law enforcement requests for blood, chemical, or urine testing. The purpose of determining the blood or breath alcohol content or detecting the presence of drugs if lawfully arrested for committing a DUI offense. A Delray Beach DUI lawyer can speak on your behalf to avoid any further charges to your case.
Consequently, refusing to submit to lawful requests for blood, urine, or breath testing will result in the suspension of a driver’s license. The first refusal will result in a one-year suspension of driving privileges and a second refusal will result in an 18-month suspension.
What are the Penalties for a DUI Offense in Florida?
Impaired driving charges can be a misdemeanor or felony offense, depending on whether the person has any prior DUI convictions and if any aggravating circumstances are present. It is important to contact a Delray Beach DUI lawyer to help mitigate your case. The penalties for a DUI conviction are as follows:
A first offense charge can lead to one year in jail and a minimum fine of $500, but no more than $1,000. There is a mandatory driver’s license revocation of 180 days and maximum of 12 months for a first offense charge for drunk driving.
A second offense would occur within five years of the first DUI conviction. The minimum jail time for a second offense is up to 10 days and maximum jail time of nine months with a minimum fine is $1,000 and a maximum fine is $2,000. This includes a minimum five-year driver’s license revocation.
A second offense would occur within ten years of the second DUI conviction. Mandatory jail time of 30 days and maximum jail time of five years. A minimum fine of $1,000 and a maximum fine of $5,000. Minimum 10-year driver’s license revocation, but can apply for a hardship license after two years.
Fourth or Subsequent Offense
There is no minimum jail sentence for a fourth offense, but there is a maximum jail time of five years. The minimum fine for a subsequent offense is $2,000 with a lifetime driver’s license revocation.
Contacting a Lawyer
A DUI conviction can result in mandatory vehicle impoundment and the installation of an ignition interlock device. DUI penalties are enhanced if the person had a blood alcohol or breath alcohol level of 0.15% or above or had anyone under 18 years of age in the vehicle at the time of the offense. If you have been charged with a DUI, you likely have numerous questions about what will happen next. Delray Beach DUI lawyers will take the time to clarify your options, protect your rights throughout the criminal process, and explore every defense available.