DUI — FIRST OFFENSE
First Offense DUI
If you have been arrested for driving while under the influence of alcohol anywhere in the central Mississippi area, we can provide you with the skilled representation you need and deserve.Obviously, the best option is not to drink and drive under any circumstances. But if you are reading this page, you have probably already made that mistake. What is important now is that you make the right decision when it comes to hiring a lawyer.Even if the charges are dropped or you are found “not guilty”, a DUI charge can be expensive. If you are found “guilty”, the charge becomes even more costly; there are court fees, fines, and increased insurance premiums to consider, in addition to the suspension of your driver’s license. Plus, a DUI conviction will stay on your driving record for five years, and the charge will stay on your driving record for life.
Any person driving on the public roads in Mississippi is deemed to have consented to a chemical breath, blood, or urine test for the purpose of determining alcohol concentration. The only requirement is that the police officer must have reasonable grounds and probable cause to believe that you were driving while under the influence of intoxicating liquor, or any other substance which had impaired your ability to operate a motor vehicle.
If you refuse to take the test when requested, and if this is your first refusal and you have not been convicted previously of DUI, the refusal carries an automatic 90 day suspension of your driver’s license and a fine of at least $250.00. Your driver’s license may be immediately taken from you and you also may still be arrested.
While you can refuse to take a field sobriety tests in most circumstances, the refusal to do so is not without consequences. In addition, refusing the test is no guarantee that you will not still be convicted of DUI.
Your Options When Stopped
It is unlawful for any person to drive while under the influence of alcohol or any other substance which impairs your ability to operate a motor vehicle. If you are pulled over and the officer suspects you have a Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) higher than 0.08% (0.04% for commercial drivers, or 0.02% if you are under 21), the officer can request that you take a field sobriety test. You may refuse a field sobriety test as well as any breathalyzer, urine, and/or blood test. However, whether refusing a field sobriety test is a good idea is a fact dependent inquiry. There is no good rule of thumb.
While you can always act out when stopped, the better practice is to be courteous to the officer and comply with any request to provide identification and proof of insurance.
What to Do After You Are Arrested
As with any misdemeanor DUI or felony DUI charge, the deck is often stacked against you. However, there are situations where the driver is wrongly charged, or where the charges should be dismissed for other legal reasons. This makes your choice of lawyer one of the most important decisions you will ever have to make.
Hiring an attorney with specific DUI defense experience is crucial to achieving the best resolution for you in the most economical manner possible. For the experienced DUI defense counsel you need, call us at 601-957-3101 or contact us online. We welcome the opportunity to discuss your case with you.