DUI Law in New York, NY

What Is a DUI?

DUI, which refers to driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, is a criminal offense that can lead to weighty consequences. Also known as DWI, the process of going to court to face either conviction or exoneration can change the course of your life forever.

Learn more about your DUI law defense options below, and then talk to a local attorney in New York, New York who will help you in this delicate situation. You don’t have to stare down consequences alone. You can take wise steps today to protect your interests.

Possible Consequences of a New York, New York DUI Conviction

Where you live, the severity of the incident, and your criminal record determine the sentencing for a DUI. The punishments can drastically increase if you have had previous DUIs, so be mindful of that. If this is your first DUI, do not go at it alone and risk costly mistakes. Get a New York law firm on your side to fight for you and your rights.

Paying Fines

If convicted of driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs in New York, New York, you can count on fines being a part of your sentencing. Depending on if you have prior convictions in New York, your DUI conviction in NYC can cost anywhere from $300 to $10,000.

However, other factors can drastically increase the amount you must pay, including:

  • Any damage to property while driving under the influence
  • If someone suffered injuries as a result of your intoxicated driving
  • Cases that include child endangerment
  • Any court costs associated with your case

Jail Time

Jail time is mandatory, even for first-time offenders in New York. If this is your first DUI offense, you may only have to face a day or two in prison. But if you have previous convictions for DUIs, you can be sentenced to several months or years, depending on the nature of the crime. Know that some circumstances can add even more time in a cell, including injury to other people while driving under the influence.

Probation

If you do not face jail time, you will likely be on probation, with the sentencing judge determining the duration. You will pay monthly fees, and you cannot commit any more criminal offenses, including traffic violations. If you violate the terms of your probation, count on facing time behind bars.

The Department of Corrections and Community Supervision may hold a hearing within 15 days of issuing a parole warrant. If you choose to waive that option, a final hearing will occur within 90 days. The consequences of a conviction for violating your parole can put you back into prison and get you charged with more crimes. In New York, even technical violations like missing an AA meeting can result in getting arrested without a warrant.

Drug and Alcohol Education Program

Following a New York DUI sentencing, the law states you must complete a drug and alcohol education program. This will teach you about the dangers of driving under the influence. These programs cost more fees besides the legal costs you already have to pay.

New York state allows individuals who take part in the Impaired Driver Program to have conditional driving privileges. The classroom phase involves attending 16 hours of classes during seven days’ worth of instruction. The fees to enter the program range from $75 to $234. After passing the requirements, you should receive a Notice of Completion which gives you a chance of getting your license back. Dropping a class, re-entering, or getting thrown out of the program can result in re-sentencing and fines.

The education programs also include a DUI evaluation. An evaluator asks you questions about how alcohol and drugs affect your life. If they believe that you are dependent, you may have to enter a substance abuse treatment program.

Suspension or Loss of License

No matter where you may face a DUI conviction, you have to undergo a license suspension period, at the very least. If it is your first DUI, you may have a license suspension for a few months while you go through probation and the drug and alcohol education program.

If this is not your first DUI, you may have your license suspended for much longer, or you could have it taken from you permanently.

What Should You Do When Charged With a DUI in New York, New York?

If you’re facing a felony DUI charge, you must take the following steps to protect yourself:

Step 1: Contact an Attorney Familiar With New York, New York  DUI Law

Immediately following your DUI arrest, you need to contact an experienced New York DUI attorney. Your attorney can help prepare for your arraignment and prepare a defense to vindicate yourself or reduce the sentencing.

Step 2: Learn About Your Local DUI Laws

New York, New York has unique laws for DUI or DWI charges. Your lawyer will work with you to help you better understand your state’s laws on driving while intoxicated. It is critical to understand what charges you face and the potential outcomes of your case. 

Step 3: Request a DMV Hearing

You or your attorney should request a hearing as soon as possible following your arrest. In New York, New York you only have so much time to ask for a DMV hearing to keep your license until your court appearance. If you do not request a hearing, prepare for a license suspension.

Administrative Law Judges run administrative hearings for the New York Department of State. While you don’t have to bring a lawyer, your rights may get the best representation by bringing one to the proceedings. The Office of Administrative Hearings schedules the hearing, and the burden of proof is on the state.

Step 4: Prepare for Court Appearance

You and your attorney will prepare for your appearance and arraignment in New York. If you plead “not guilty,” your DUI defense attorney represents you in court, and a judge and jury oversee the DUI law case.

Step 5: Receive Sentencing or Exoneration

You will either be “not guilty” of the charges brought against you and walk free, or you will receive sentencing for a guilty verdict.

Work with an Experienced Local DUI Lawyer in New York

Should you ever find yourself charged with a DUI, you need to work with an experienced New York, New York lawyer who can stand up for you in court. You cannot clear your name of the charges or reduce the consequences without help. Your life and future depend on having great legal representation during your DUI case. Contact an attorney near you today. We can even help you connect with legal help across New York state lines.

Submit a request online or call us today at (866) 345-6784 to get in touch with an experienced lawyer in your area!

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