DUI Citations: Everything You Need to Know
If you are pulled over on suspicion of driving under the influence, your anxiety may kick into high gear. Even if you haven’t been drinking – or you are under the legal blood-alcohol limit – you may start to worry because you know that a DUI conviction in Arizona can lead to serious consequences. If you have been drinking, your anxiety levels will likely be even higher because you know that you’re caught.
Better understanding the ins and outs of DUI citations can help you know what you’re up against so that you can make good choices – starting with making sure you don’t drink and drive. Always call a DUI law office to work with an attorney if you are charged with a DUI.
Driving under the Influence is a Crime
Some people think that a DUI citation is a simple traffic infraction, like speeding. However, DUI is a crime, and it will appear on your criminal record, even if you end up with probation. (Even speeding shows up on your criminal record since traffic violations are also crimes.)
The circumstances surrounding your DUI charge will determine whether you are ultimately convicted of a misdemeanor or felony. A felony carries more far-reaching consequences, including not being able to vote or own a firearm.
Working with one of the best DUI lawyers you can find may help you get those charges reduced to a misdemeanor or dismissed entirely, which can protect your future.
When You’re Charged
If you are pulled over on suspicion of driving under the influence, you will be asked to take a test. Either you will be asked to take a field sobriety test that involves you doing a number of tasks such as walking in a straight line or touching your nose, or you will be asked to take a breathalyzer test that will analyze your blood-alcohol content.
If you are found to be under the influence, you will be arrested and your car may be impounded. Your license may also be revoked. You will then be charged with a DUI and booked into jail.
The Penalties for DUI
Whether you are convicted of a misdemeanor or a felony DUI, you can expect to face some unpleasant consequences. The more serious the circumstances of your case, the more likely you are to face harsh penalties that will follow you for life.
At a minimum, you should expect to have to pay fines and court costs, as well as increased insurance costs if you are convicted of a DUI. You may also face jail time, and you may have your license suspended for a long time, have an ignition interlock device installed on your car, or have to complete community service or drug and alcohol education courses. More serious offenses will come with bigger fines and greater jail time, as well as longer periods without your license and with an ignition interlock device. If you are convicted of a felony, you will also lose the rights that felons lose, such as being able to vote, and you’ll find it very hard to get a job going forward.
Why You Need an Attorney
The consequences of a DUI conviction are too serious to leave your case to chance. You are not a trained or experienced attorney, so you don’t know enough about the law or the criminal justice system to be able to effectively negotiate a lower sentence or to get your charges dismissed. A good DUI defense lawyer does.
By hiring one of the best DUI attorneys in Arizona you can, you can significantly increase your chances of getting only a DUI citation and not a conviction. An attorney may be able to get the charges against you dismissed or reduced, which will help you protect your driving record. Where it is not possible to avoid conviction, an attorney may be able to help you get a reduced sentence.
If you have been charged with DUI, call to talk to one of the DUI lawyers at My AZ Lawyers. Our DUI defense lawyers are ready to help fight your DUI charges so that you can move on with your life without the long-term consequences. We serve clients in Mesa, Glendale, Tucson, and Phoenix. We can help those who have been charged with their first DUI or their fifth. We also help clients looking to expunge previous charges. Call us today to talk with one of our DUI defense attorneys.
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Mesa, AZ 85202
Office: (480) 448-9800
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Glendale, AZ 85308
Office: (602) 509-0955
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Tucson, AZ 85701
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Avondale, AZ 85392