You may head out to meet some friends on a Friday night for dinner and a few drinks. Maybe it’s been a long time since you’ve been out on the town and you get a little carried away. You have more than a few craft beers, but you think you are fine to drive home. Yet just before you reach your condo building in Virginia, police pull you over. When you complete the breathalyzer test, your blood alcohol level shows up as .10 and now police arrest you for DUI.
What penalties will you face for a DUI conviction in Virginia?
For a first-time DUI conviction, you:
· Will have to pay a mandatory $250 fine
· Will lose your driver’s license for one year
For a second DUI offense, you:
· Will have to pay a mandatory $500 fine
· May lose your driver’s license for up to three years
· May serve up to one year in jail
If you receive a third DUI offense conviction or a DWI felony conviction, you:
· Will pay a mandatory $1,000 fine
· Will have your driver’s license revoked indefinitely
· Will face Class 6 felony prosecution (which will include facing a possible one- to five-year state prison sentence)
Facing additional DUI penalties
You will face additional penalties if your blood alcohol content registers above .15%. If you are under age 21 and police pull you over for drunk driving, you can face DUI charges if you have even a .02% blood alcohol level.
When facing DUI charges
If you are facing DUI charges, you need to consult an experienced criminal defense attorney. An attorney can review the circumstances of your arrest and mount a defense against the DUI charges you face. In the end, you could see your DUI charges dismissed or reduced, meaning you will face less severe penalties.
Having a DUI on your criminal record can impact your life beyond facing fines and possible jail time. You may have to pay elevated insurance rates for years; you could limit your future employment opportunities or your ability to seek certain professional licenses. So, you want to do all you can to preserve your freedom and future when facing DUI charges.