A driving under the influence (DUI) charge is a serious offense. When a person operates a vehicle after having a few drinks, they could face criminal charges. If a person’s blood alcohol level (BAL) is .08 or higher, they are considered impaired and incapable of properly operating a motor vehicle.

Drunk or drugged drivers are a danger to themselves and others. Drunk drivers are often involved in car accidents. If an intoxicated driver is lucky enough to avoid a collision, they are not in the clear. Law enforcement can stop and apprehend an inebriated driver.

First-time DUI penalties in Florida

For a first-time DUI offender, who doesn’t cause any property damage or harm another person, the penalties are:

  • At least $500 yet no more than $1,000
  • If there was a minor in the vehicle, or if the person’s BAL was higher than .15, there may be an additional $1,000 to $2,000 fee
  • Up to six months in a penitentiary
  • Up to nine months imprisonment if a minor was present or the person’s BAL was higher than .15
  • Driver’s license revocation for a minimum of 180 days, with a maximum of one year

The police will impound the driver’s vehicle and arrest the driver. If a drunk driver harms or kills anyone, the consequences will be much more severe.

How can an attorney help you?

Often, people elect not to fight DUI charges, which is a mistake in most cases. Whether law enforcement made a mistake, or the driver is facing reckless endangerment or manslaughter charges, every person deserves a strong defense.

In many DUI cases, the offender is remorseful or simply didn’t realize they were over the legal limit. Regardless of the circumstances surrounding the DUI charge, it may be wise to minimize the repercussions; an experienced criminal defense attorney can do just that.