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A DUI arrest can be a fear-invoking experience as the consequences of a conviction are far reaching. A person convicted of driving under the influence in the state of Alabama will face both administrative and criminal penalties that may include costly fines, jail time and license suspension or revocation.

The punishment for driving intoxicated will affect not only the individual who is accused but their family as well because they may have to help pay the costs, deal with the stress of a family member being incarcerated, or have to drive them around while their license is suspended. Relationships and reputations could be damaged as a result of a conviction, which is why it is important anyone arrested for a DUI seek legal counsel to guide them through the process following an arrest. A Vestavia Hills DUI Lawyer knows the ins and outs of the legal system and can fight on your behalf to achieve the most positive outcome possible for your case.

Legal Limits for DUI’s

The legal limits for blood alcohol concentration (BAC) will determine whether or not a person may be arrested for a DUI or may receive an alcohol-related infraction.

A law enforcement agent may suspect a driver of being under the influence based on the way in which they are driving or it may be because of a DUI checkpoint on a major holiday weekend. Typically a test will be done to determine BAC. In Alabama, legal limits after which a DUI arrest may happen are as follows:

  • 08% BAC for a driver aged 21 and older
  • 04% BAC for a commercial vehicle driver 21 and older
  • 02% BAC for a school bus driver
  • 02% BAC for a driver under 21 years

There is no legal limit for driving under the influence of a controlled substance in Vestavia Hills or the rest of the state. Any driver who will not submit a chemical test to the authorities will be penalized with a 90-day license suspension that could be extended to an entire year if it is a repeat offense. Those who will not submit a chemical test may also not be eligible to have a hearing for their case or a restricted license.

A restricted license will allow a person to drive their vehicle with an ignition interlock device installed, which will only start the engine if the driver passes a breath test of 0.02% BAC or less.

Alabama Penal Code for DUI Violations

The Alabama penal code for DUI violations is spelled out in the Alabama Legislature Code of Law Section 32-5A-191 based on first, second, third and fourth offense as well as other factors like the BAC of the driver, the type of vehicle, and if any personal or property damage happened as a result of reckless driving. If a person is convicted of a DUI, the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency can suspend or revoke the driver’s license, determine restricted license eligibility, define reinstatement requirements, and place points on their driving record. Criminal law enforcers will examine the case to decide if the DUI charge is a misdemeanor or a felony and will sentence fines and possible jail time or mandatory volunteer service accordingly. For a first, second, and even third DUI offense, a person will likely be charged with a misdemeanor and may pay a fine, spend up to a year in prison, and have their license suspended for a period of 90 days or longer with a restricted license after that period.

For a first, second and even third DUI offense, a person will likely be charged with a misdemeanor and may pay a fine, spend up to a year in prison, and have their license suspended for a period of 90 days or longer with a restricted license after that period.

However, for a fourth offense, repeated offenses in a five-year period, or any DUI arrest in which another person is injured or killed, the charge will likely be a class C felony, which could result in one to 10 years in jail, five years of a revoked license, and followed by five years of a restricted license and a fine of $4,100 to $10,100. A felony conviction will also require that the person enrolls in a chemical dependency program. Given the range and severity of the penal code for DUIs, it is important to understand the laws and to know how to plead a case in court in order to ensure a fair trial and sentencing.

Talk to a Vestavia Hills DUI Attorney Today

The period after a DUI arrest may be challenging and distressing. In addition to the potential penalties faced, the social and financial repercussions as well may have a lasting impact on the individual’s life and those around them. It is crucial that a person charged with a DUI know how to defend themselves to avoid severe consequences. Contact a Vestavia Hills DUI lawyer who can protect your rights and fight your case to help you get the best results possible in a tough situation.