Charged with DUI or other alcohol-related charges in Stafford, Fredericksburg, Manassas, or elsewhere in Northern Virginia? Call Williams Stone Carpenter Buczek, PC. The penalties for DUI in Virginia are tough. If you’ve been charged with DUI, you need an aggressive lawyer to come to your defense.
Is this your first charge or conviction? A first offense can and will result in expensive fines with a minimum of $250 and up to one year of revocation of a driver’s license. Did you have a BAC (blood alcohol content) of .15 or more? If so, you are facing jail time. And those with BAC levels of .21 or higher face more severe jail sentences.
Some individuals simply plead guilty and pay their fines or do their time. Others choose to fight and call our attorneys.
Defending DUI Charges
Williams Stone Carpenter Buczek, PC has the experience and knowledge to defend DUI cases and has successfully done so for many throughout Northern Virginia. We will investigate every detail of your situation and identify potential areas of error that may help you gain an advantage for those electing to defend their charge.
Our attorneys work with all types of DUI charges and can answer any question you might have including penalties, possible defense, consequences for multiple drunk driving charges, underage DUI, penalties for both misdemeanors & felonies, out of state charges, DUI where injuries are involved, breath and blood tests, field sobriety tests, blood alcohol levels, suspended driver’s license, details of sobriety checkpoints and more. It doesn’t matter your situation or question, Williams Stone Carpenter Buczek, PC is here and ready to evaluate your case.
- Will I go to jail if I’m charged with DUI in Virginia?
- Will I lose my license?
- What is blood alcohol concentration?
- Can I refuse a breathalyzer?
- Are breath test results always accurate?
- What happens if I lose my license but continue to drive?
- What effect does a DUI conviction have on a driving record?
- Will a DUI arrest affect my out-of-state license?
- What is the punishment in Virginia for drunk driving?
- Will I need to see an alcohol counselor if convicted?
- What is the best way to beat a drunk driving charge?
- Do I need a lawyer if I intend to plead guilty?
- Can an attorney really help me?
- How much does a lawyer cost?
- What is the difference between a DWI & DUI?
- Will I be required to have an ignition interlock device on my vehicle?
- How do I choose the best attorney?
Virginia has extremely harsh penalties for DUI convictions. Area residents trust local law enforcement to maintain public safety in many ways. That does not mean, however, that every arrest is warranted or that every defendant is guilty. Fortunately, our legal and judicial system allows people to prove their innocence and sometimes have charges lessened or even dropped, including people arrested on DUI charges.
The penalties set forth by Virginia law are well detailed by both the Department of Motor Vehicles and the State Legislature. Every case is unique but the basic parameters for DUI penalties are as follows:
- A first-time conviction can result in a driver’s license revocation for 12 months and the payment of a fine starting at $250.
- A second-time conviction will result in a driver’s license revocation for a period of 36 months and the payment of a fine starting at $500. If the conviction follows one in the previous 10 years, a minimum of one month of jail time can be required. If the conviction follows one in the previous five years, a minimum of two months of jail time can be required.
- A third-time conviction will lead to the indefinite revocation of a driver’s license with a minimum amount of time in jail of 90 days. If the conviction follows two others within a span of five years, the minimum jail time will be six months. Loss of vehicle possession can also happen and fines will start at $1,000. These charges are handled as felonies.
Any conviction that involves blood alcohol levels greater than 0.15 percent may increase the amount of jail time that is ordered.
Virginia’s DUI laws apply not just to persons driving automobiles but also to people driving mopeds operated on state highways. Additionally, impairment by drugs can result in the same penalties as impairment by alcohol. If an accident occurs and a driver is suspected to be intoxicated or under the influence of drugs an officer can make a DUI arrest within three hours of the incident.
Don’t expect the state to cut you any slack just because you’re under 21. If you’re underage, you cannot buy, possess or drink alcohol. If law enforcement officers stop you and find that you have been drinking, you may have your license suspended for a year. If your BAC was .02 but less than .08, you may also be required to pay a $5,000 fine or perform 50 hours of community service. If your BAC exceeds .08, you will be subject to the same penalties as an adult.
Multiple DUI Offenses
Maybe you thought the penalties for your first conviction were stiff enough. If this is your second DUI offense in Virginia, watch out. The penalties are going up:
- The court will require an ignition interlock device on every vehicle you own. If you violate the restrictions, your license will be revoked for three years.
- If your blood alcohol content was between .15 and .20 at the time of your arrest, you’ll have to spend 10 days in jail. If it was .20 or higher, you will spend a minimum of 20 days in jail.
- If you are in an Alcohol Safety Action Program (ASAP), you will be on three years’ probation, and Virginia ASAP will monitor your compliance with the ignition interlock.
Multiple offenses get you into deeper hot water. Arrest for a third or fourth DUI within five years means you will not be allowed to post bail. Conviction of a third DUI sets you up for prosecution as a Class 6 felony. You will lose your car, pay higher fines, and spend more time in jail. If you have a fourth conviction, your jail time will lengthen to a year.
Contact Williams Stone Carpenter Buczek, PC
Whether facing a first-time DUI or multiple drunk driving convictions, contacting our attorneys shortly after you are charged with DUI is crucial. Our team brings a straightforward, disciplined approach to criminal defense. We know what it takes to fight a charge and win.
The legal representation you rely on for any DUI charge directly affects your future. When facing serious penalties such as jail time, fines, probation, suspension of a driver’s license, and more, you may find that a proven lawyer makes all the difference in Virginia. For an initial DUI consultation, contact Williams Stone Carpenter Buczek, PC today.