I just got arrested for a Maryland DUI charge. What happens now? ISSUE ONE: The Maryland Implied Consent Civil Proceeding: The most pressing matter may be requesting an appeal / hearing of your implied consent license suspension. Your Maryland driver license was most likely suspended for anywhere from 45 days to one year for failing or refusing a breath test or a blood test. If you had a valid Maryland drivers license at the time of your arrest, you should have been issued a temporary permit that allows you to drive for 45 days.
Read your paperwork carefully. If you would like to challenge the administrative / implied consent suspension, you should make your MVA hearing request no later than the 10th day following receipt of the Order of Suspension (generally your date of arrest). If you represent yourself on this issue, make sure that you do not miss the deadline or you will waive your right to challenge your suspension.
If you hire a Maryland attorney in time, your lawyer can make this request on your behalf. Why do I face a license suspension for failing or refusing a breath test? Under Maryland law, any person who drives or attempts to drive a motor vehicle on a highway or on any private property that is used by the public in general in the State of Maryland is deemed to have consented to take a test if the person should be detained on suspicion of driving or attempting to drive while under the influence of alcohol, while impaired by alcohol, while so far impaired by any drug, any combination of drugs, or a combination of one or more drugs and alcohol that the person could not drive a vehicle safely, while impaired by a controlled dangerous substance.
This law is known as "implied consent." The legislature specified suspension lengths for failing or refusing a chemical (breath / blood) test. ∭ ISSUE TWO: The Maryland DUI / DWI Criminal Charge: Separate from the implied consent suspension is the Maryland criminal offense for driving under the influence (DUI) or driving while impaired (DWI). Under Maryland law, you may not drive or attempt to drive any vehicle: You may be cited for one or more of the above offenses which are generally different theories of the same conduct.
As you can see, Maryland uses a two tier system. DUI is the more serious offense and is generally seen when a person's drug alcohol content is 0.08 percent or greater. DWI is the less serious offense and is most often seen when the state alleges driver impairment but the driver registers a BAC below 0.08 percent. Make sure you do not miss your court appearance or a bench warrant will be issued for your arrest.
Important: These two issues (the implied consent proceeding and the Maryland DUI criminal charge) are completely separate from one another. Will my Maryland driver license be revoked / suspended? RELATED TO ISSUE ONE ABOVE: Your Maryland drivers license (or your right to drive in Maryland if you do not have a valid Maryland license) may be suspended for failing―blood alcohol content .
08% or greater (lower for minors (persons under 21 years of age))―a breath or blood test or for refusing a breath or blood test. If you act quickly (typically within 10 days of your arrest), you can request an MVA hearing to contest the proposed suspension. If you had a valid Maryland drivers license at the time of your breath / blood test failure / refusal, you should have received a temporary permit that allows you to drive for the 45 days following your arrest On the 46th day following your arrest, the suspension begins (unless your appeal is successful).
∭ RELATED TO ISSUE TWO ABOVE: If you are convicted of either a DUI or DWI charge your license will be suspended as well. The length of this suspension depends on the conviction and your DUI / DWI history. This suspension is separate from the implied consent suspension. ∭ Also keep in mind that your license can be suspended for a variety of other reasons unrelated to any DUI arrest such as for a drug conviction or excessive points.
What happens if I get caught driving while my license is suspended / invalid in the State of Maryland? Driving while your license is suspended (DWS / DWLS) for a DUI conviction or for failing or refusing a breath test should be avoided as it is a new criminal offense. Penalties include a fine and possible jail time. I really need to drive. Will I be able to get a occupational / restricted license / probationary permit? Possibly.
If you make a timely request (generally within 10 days of your arrest, a judge may allow you to have a restricted license allowing you to drive to and from work (and possibly limited other places). You may also seek to have an ignition interlock device installed in your vehicle so that you may continue to drive. Speak to your Maryland DUI lawyer about whether you qualify and how to apply for an restricted license and / or an ignition interlock device.
The State of Maryland not issue restricted CDL permits. Put another way, you cannot get a restricted license to drive commercial vehicles. Is a DUI / DWI offense in Maryland a misdemeanor or felony charge? In Maryland, DUI and DWI charges are misdemeanor crimes, not felonies. What type of sentence / penalties might I face if I am convicted of a Maryland DUI charge? If convicted of aMaryland DUI, a defendant will receive a variety of sentencing penalties including alcohol treatment / education; possible victims panel class.
A range of penalties is set forth below: MARYLAND DUI / DWI PENALTY CHART DUI / DWI CONVICTION TYPICAL PENALTIES FIRST DUI OFFENSE(first offense within the past 10 years) Jail time possible but not required; Several hundred dollars in fines; License suspension of 45-120 days. SECOND DUI OFFENSE(second offense within 10 years) Five or more days jail; Several hundred dollars or more in fines; License suspension of 90 days to one year.
THIRD DUI OFFENSE (third offense within 10 years) Ten or more days jail; Substantial fines up to $3000; License suspension of 90 days to one year. FIRST DWI OFFENSE(first offense within 10 years) Possible jail time; Few hundred dollars in fines; 45 day license suspension. SECOND DWI OFFENSE(second offense within 10 years) Probable jail time; Few hundred dollars in fines; 45 day license suspension.
The length of your license suspension varies depending on your BAC or whether you refused a chemical test. Will I be able to plea bargain / negotiate my Maryland DUI offense down to a lesser type charge or a Probation before Judgment? Possibly. Maryland DUI plea bargaining and charge reduction are two areas that any experienced DUI lawyer will discuss with the prosecutor on the client's behalf.
One possibility for a first DUI charge is a "probation before judgment" or PBJ. If allowed to do a probation before judgment, a defendant is placed on probation but no conviction is entered. If the defendant successfully completes probation (without violation), then no conviction is entered. Additionally, points are not assessed on a successful PBJ. While a PBJ will not appear on your general driving record, the courts and prosecutors will be able to see the PBJ if you get a subsequent DUI / DWI and it will be used against you.
Will a Maryland DUI conviction go on "my record?" Yes. A DUI conviction and a DWI conviction will go on your Maryland driving record. A breath test refusal will go on your driving record. A successful PBJ will not appear on your general driving record. Just how much jail time will I have to do if I am convicted of a DUI / DWI offense in Maryland? The amount of incarceration (jail or prison) received for a Maryland DUI / DWI will depend on a number of factors, including (but not limited to) the following: • your prior driving record especially your DUI / DWI / PBJ history (including out of state DUI / DWI / OWI convictions); • your level of intoxication / impairment / BAC; • whether there was an accident involved; • whether there was an injury to another person in the collision; • which Maryland court your case is in; • what judge you are sentenced by; • whether there was a passenger / minor child in your car; • whether the court feels you have accepted responsibility for your actions.
I am licensed to drive in a state other than Maryland and I was cited for a DUI / DWI in Maryland. Will my driver license be suspended / revoked? Maryland only has the authority to suspend your right to drive in the State of Maryland. However, Maryland and 44 other states and the District of Columbia have adopted an agreement known as the "Driver License Compact." Maryland will report a Maryland DUI / DWI conviction to the home state of the driver (assuming the home state has also adopted the Compact).
Your home state will then generally take action to suspend or revoke your license. This also works in reverse. If you are a Maryland licensed driver and you are convicted of a DWI / DUI / OWI conviction in another state, Maryland will likely suspend your license if it learns of the conviction. Will I have to install an Alcohol Breath Analyzed Ignition Interlock Device on my car? An ignition interlock device (IID) is a breath alcohol measurement device that is connected to a motor vehicle ignition.
In order to start the motor vehicle, a driver must blow a breath sample into the device which then measures alcohol concentration. If the alcohol concentration exceeds the startup set point on the interlock device, the motor vehicle will not start. You may have to install an ignition interlock device if you're convicted of a Maryland DUI. Speak to your lawyer about whether this requirement applies to your situation.
What will a Maryland DUI conviction do to my insurability? If your insurance company finds out about a Maryland DUI or DWI conviction one of two things typically happen. Either your Maryland insurer will raise your rates or you may be cancelled or non-renewed. What happens if I was on probation for another crime when I was arrested for my Maryland DUI / DWI? Committing a new criminal offense while you're on probation for a previous crime creates two concerns.
First, you face the new Maryland DUI or DWI charge. Second, you also face a probation violation hearing for failing to "obey all laws." The most serious scenario is when you receive a new Maryland DWI or DUI offense when you're already on probation for a previous DUI conviction. When this happens, its in your best interest to speak to a Maryland attorney as soon as possible. I'm not a United States citizen.
Will a Maryland DUI or DWI conviction result in my removal from this country? Probably not. Typical, first time Maryland DUI and DWI offenses (no priors; no child in car) are generally not considered crimes of moral turpitude or aggravated felonies resulting in removal. However, it is important to consult an experienced immigration attorney about your situation just as you should consult with an experienced Maryland criminal defense lawyer about your pending DWI / DUI offense.
Keep two points in mind. First, it is very important to answer truthfully all questions about prior arrests / convictions on immigration and Visa applications and forms and in any interviews. Dishonesty is often considered more serious than any DWI / DUI arrest / conviction. Second, non-citizens should take special care not to drive on a suspended or revoked license. Are there special concerns for aircraft pilots who get arrested for a Maryland DUI offense? Yes.
The FAA has special reporting requirements for certain Motor Vehicle Actions including Maryland DUI and DWI convictions and certain implied consent license actions (suspensions for failing or refusing a chemical test). Learn more here. Are there any concerns for mariners licensed by the United States Coast Guard who get a DUI offense in Maryland? Yes. An applicant for a Coast Guard credential must disclose all criminal convictions on their CG application form including DUI / DWI convictions.
In addition, the Regional Exam Center (REC) performs a National Driver Register check on applicants. Once a DUI / DWI conviction is identified, the REC evaluates the applicant's reported conviction and associated facts. I missed my Maryland court date. What do I do now? Failing to appear (FTA) for court is to be avoided. When you miss a court appearance, bad things happen. At a minimum, the court typically issues a warrant for your arrest (known as a bench warrant).
You also may face a new criminal charge. Talk to a Maryland DUI attorney as soon as possible. Sometimes, your only option is to turn yourself in on the outstanding bench warrant. A new court date will then be scheduled for your appearance. Can I represent myself in court on my Maryland DUI or other charge(s)? Yes. You have an absolute right to represent yourself on any State of Maryland criminal charge no matter how serious including a DUI / DWI offense.
Keep in mind that Maryland DUI law is complex as shown by the information here. If you cannot afford to hire your own Maryland lawyer, you absolutely should apply for a court appointed attorney to represent you. You have no right to court appointed counsel at any administrative license proceeding. Copyright 2013, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009See Also: Online Dating First Message Example
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First DUI Convictions Will Show Up On Your Record The fact of the matter is that an offender’s first DUI conviction, even a misdemeanor DUI, not only shows up on their record, but it is also the reason many people lose out on the chance to rent or buy a home, miss job opportunities, or become ineligible for scholarships and other types of financial aid. The best chance of ensuring this does not happen to you is getting your charges dismissed or reduced.
Police may have honorable intentions in trying to keep drunk drivers off the road, but for first-time DUI offenders, they can sometimes be too harsh or even use scare tactics to get drivers to submit to breathalyzer testing or participate in field sobriety tests, which have led to many innocent drivers being stuck with DUI arrests on their record. This is why you need sound legal representation by your side, so you have the best chance of walking away clean.
Penalties for First DUI Offenses If you get picked up for a first DUI, it’s not unfair to assume that you will receive probation if you are convicted. While this does happen with most first-time DUI offenders, the court may assign other penalties as conditions of that probation, some of which include the following: Possible time in jail, depending on the laws of your state A driver’s license suspension Fees and fines Raised car insurance rates Community service Mandatory attendance in a drug/alcohol treatment program or DUI school Possible use of an ignition interlock device (IID) in your vehicle Even misdemeanor DUI offenses in most states will require that you serve a mandatory minimum jail sentence, even if it’s only for a few days.
While states may differ on jail sentences, they virtually all will suspend your driver’s license for a specific amount of time. Also, depending on your criminal and driving histories, it’s possible you might qualify for a hardship driver’s license or an occupational license, so you can drive yourself to school or work. Aggravating Factors for First DUIs In general, a first DUI charge is considered a misdemeanor, leading to community service, fines, a license suspension, and probation in many cases.
However, there are other factors that can affect the nature or level of your charge, leading to greater penalties and sentences. Several possible aggravating factors include the following: Having a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) higher than 0.15 percent Being involved in an accident Causing property damage Causing bodily injury Refusing a chemical test to determine BAC Having one or more children under 14 years of age in the vehicle Having a past DUI conviction within the previous 10 years Being on probation Being under 21 years of age Driving on a revoked or suspended license Excessive speeding Reckless driving As another example, if a driver has an open container of alcohol in their vehicle, they might still be charged with only a misdemeanor DUI, but the subsequent fine or jail sentence may be increased.
If there were children in the vehicle at the time of the arrest, however, a driver could see their charge elevated from a misdemeanor to a felony, even if the driver had no prior DUI convictions. The administrative element of DUI charges is also something first-time offenders need to consider, often seen through the loss of driving privileges due to a license suspension. For instance, most U.S. states will suspend a driver’s license automatically up to a year if they refuse to submit to a breathalyzer test, and this suspension is separate from the one you would receive later for a DUI conviction.
Conditions for a Driver’s License Suspension To get your driver’s license back quickly after losing it to a DUI conviction, it’s likely you will need to deal with a criminal law judge and an administrative law judge. If you are caught driving out on the road while you have a driver’s license suspension, you will only find yourself facing new fines and charges. Additionally, some states may also require that drivers install and then pay for an IID while their case is pending or after their initial license suspension.
After a state-designated IID installer has installed it in your vehicle, the IID will run as high as $200 a month to maintain. Failing to fulfill this condition could result in your bond getting revoked, thus sending you back to jail. How First DUI Changes Car Insurance and Employment When a first-time DUI arrest, charge, or conviction goes on your record, the level of risk you present for potential employers and insurance companies increases significantly.
Because a DUI becomes part of your criminal history, employers can learn about it due to any runs on criminal backgrounds that they make. Some employers will choose not to employ you, because they see you as a liability and a safety risk or because there is a chance of their insurance rates potentially increasing. Because of the elevated risk you present as a DUI offender, you should also get ready for your car insurance rates to increase in the aftermath of your conviction.
The logic behind this is that because you have proven yourself to be a dangerous driver, the insurance company must do what it can to protect itself against the liability you present as a past DUI offender and as a potential future DUI offender. If you ended up in an accident because of a DUI, and the offense was raised to a felony charge, the insurance company might not cover the costs of the accident.
Most insurance policies do not cover damages that occurred during the commission of a felony, such as with felony DUI offenses. If you want the best chance of getting your first DUI charge dismissed or reduced to a lesser charge, such as wet reckless or reckless driving, don’t rely on the public defender—you need a solid, experienced DUI attorney on the case to get you out of the courtroom and back into your normal life.
First DUI Offense Penalties By State State of Violation Min. Jail Sentence Fines & Fees License Suspension IID Required Alabama No minimum $600-$2,100 90 days N Alaska 72-hour minimum $1,500 90-day minimum Y Arizona 24-hour minimum $250+ 90-360 days Y Arkansas Up to one year $150-$1,000 6 months Y California 4 days & up to 6 months $1,400-$2,600 1-10 months Only in some counties Colorado Up to 180 days (DWAI) – Up to 1 year (DUI) Up to $500 for DWAI, up to $1,000 for DUI DUI 9 months N Connecticut 2 days & up to 6 months $500-$1,000 1 year N Delaware 0-6 months $500-$1,500 1-2 years N D.
C. 0-90 days $300-$1,100 6 months N Florida 6-9 months $500-$2,000 180-365 days Y Georgia Up to 1 year $300-$1,000 1-year max N Hawaii No minimum $150-$1,000 90 days N Idaho Up to 6 months $1000 max 90-180 days N Illinois Up to 1 year $2,500 max 1-year minimum Y Indiana 60 days to 1 year $500-$5,000 2-year max N Iowa 48 hours to 1 year $625-$1,200 180 days If BAC is over .10 Kansas 48 hours+ $750-$1,000 30 days Y Kentucky No minimum $600-$2,100 90 days N Louisiana 2 days to 6 months $1,000 90 days Judged by individual case Maine 30 days $500 90 days N Maryland Up to 2 months (DWI), Up to 1 year (DUI) Up to $500 for DWI, up to $1,000 for DUI Minimum of 6 months for either violation N Massachusetts Up to 30 months $500-$5,000 1 year N Michigan Up to 93 days $100-$500 6 months max Judged by individual case Minnesota Up to 90 days $1,000 90 days max Y Mississippi Up to 48 hours $250-$1,000 90 days N Missouri Up to 6 months $500 max 30 days Judged by individual case Montana 2-180 days $300-$1,000 6 months Judged by individual case Nebraska 7-60 days $500 max 60 days max N Nevada 2-180 days $400-$1,000 90 days Judged by individual case New Hampshire No minimum $500-$1,200 6 months N New Jersey Up to 30 days $250-$500 3-12 months Judged by individual case New Mexico Up to 90 days $500 max 1-year max Y New York No minimum $500-$1,000 6 months Y North Carolina 1 day to 12 months depending upon level of offense $200 for level 5 offense 60-365 days N North Dakota No minimum $500-$750 91-180 days N Ohio 3-180 days $250-$1,000 Minimum 6 months, maximum 3 years N Oklahoma 5 days with a 1 year maximum $1,000 max 30 days N Oregon 48 hours or 80 hours of community service $1,000-$6,250 1 year Y Pennsylvania n/a $300 No minimum Yes if chemical test is refused Rhode Island Up to 1 year $100-$500 2-18 months N South Carolina 2-90 days $400-$1,000 6 months N South Dakota Up to 1 year $1,000 30-365 days N Tennessee 2 days with an 11-month maximum $350-$1,500 1 year Y Texas 3-180 days $2,000 max 90-365 days N Utah Minimum of 48 hours Minimum of $700 120 days N Vermont Up to 2 years $750 max 90 days N Virginia Minimum of 5 days Minimum of $250 1 year If BAC is .
15 or higher Washington 24-hour minimum with maximum of 1 year $865.50-$5,000 90-365 days Y West Virginia Up to 6 months $100-$1,000 15-45 days Judged by individual case Wisconsin n/a $150-$300 6-9 months N Wyoming Up to 6 months $750 max 90 days If BAC is .15 or higher