Your DUI case may be considered a misdemeanor or a felony. A DUI Maryland attorney will instruct you on the differences between the two, and how your case can be classified.
Driving under the influence (DUI) is a serious crime. However, as a DUI Maryland Attorney will tell you, the severity of your charge is different, depending on your circumstances. Here are some factors that may determine the severity of your case:
- State Law
- Driver’s prior record
The majority of drivers arrested are charged with a misdemeanor offense, but that still will not prevent you for being responsible for large penalties.
A DUI Maryland Attorney on First Time Offenses
As a DUI Maryland Lawyer will tell you, if you are a first time offender and were not involved in an accident, then you will likely be charged for a misdemeanor offense. The following may happen if you are found guilty:
- You may be fined up to $1,000
- Your driving privileges may be revoked for 45 days or longer
- You may be ordered to spend up to a year behind bars
Since this is your first offense, a DUI Maryland Attorney may feel you have a better chance of getting your charges reduced. Judges have been known to reduce charges or penalties when one of the following occurs:
- You agree to substance abuse treatment, and/or
- You install an ignition interlock device in your vehicle, which requires that you perform a breathalyzer anytime you want to drive.
A DUI Maryland Attorney on Repeat Offenses
If you have been convicted of driving under the influence within the past five years, or if you were involved in an accident, your sentence will be much harsher, as a DUI Maryland Lawyer will explain. You may also be penalized further if you are charged with refusing to perform a breathalyzer test. In Maryland, the punishment for refusing the test is often more severe than for failing.
A misdemeanor drunk driving conviction, while not as harsh as a felony conviction, can still greatly affect your life. Once your sentence is completed, you may be affected in the following ways:
- You could face higher insurance rates
- Your employment opportunities may be limited
- Your housing opportunities may be limited
Your best option is to simply avoid being found guilty, and the best way to do that is to have professional legal counsel.
To discuss your case, contact DUI Maryland Attorneys Rowe, Weinstein & Sohn, PLLC at 301-770-4710 or 1-888-340-7583.