A Guide to DUI Laws and Determining Fault in Resulting Pedestrian Accidents
There’s no exact number of drinks to determine if you’re over the limit. However, you can approximate if you are approaching or have exceeded the legal limit.
Measuring the amount of alcohol in the blood, also known as Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC), helps you know if you are over the legal limit. If your BAC is high, it means your alcohol level in the blood is high. Driving under the influence is illegal in all states. A high BAC in most states is usually .08% and above. Drinking and driving with a BAC of .08% or higher is over the legal limit and can cause accidents and injuries. If such accidents happen, you need to know what the DUI law says about the consequences of driving under the influence.
How Much Can You Drink Before Driving
Depending on your state’s driving under the influence law, driving a car with a .08% BAC or higher is illegal. This applies to drivers who are 21 years or older.
Drivers below 21 years might have a BAC limit of .01% to .03%, and in some cases, any amount of alcohol in their blood is not allowed while driving. The DUI lawyers also suggest the same.
What To Do After a DUI Accident
It’s important to ensure your BAC is not over the limit before driving or walking home. The driving under the influence consequences can be very severe. Besides causing severe injuries to pedestrians or other passengers, drunk drivers pay huge fines, lose licenses, and pay for higher insurance. If such accidents occur, here’s what you should do.
- Get medical help
Stay calm and keep yourself safe. If you have company, check to see that they are safe, then call for help. Depending on the seriousness of the injuries, you can call 911. Make sure you see a doctor and get medical attention.
- Call personal injury lawyers
Call a pedestrian accident lawyer who will investigate your case and help you rebuild your life. An experienced lawyer will negotiate on your behalf to avoid a driving under the influence charge and ensure your case is handled successfully. An injury lawyer is willing to look at all injury cases, including serious injuries like brain damage.
- Call brain damage attorney
In cases of brain damage, a brain injury attorney can help. They’ll advise you on your rights, make injury claims on your behalf if possible, and help with any defenses.
In cases of brain damage, a brain injury attorney can help. They’ll advise you on your rights under DUI law, make injury claims on your behalf if possible, and help with any defenses to limit driving under the influence penalties.
Drunk driving has serious consequences that can cause accidents leading to paralysis, a disfigured body, brain damage, or even death.
Legal Consequences of a DUI
Driving under the influence is a rather tricky situation. Sometimes, the perpetrator may not be discovered at all. But there are other times when it results in injury to other persons, damage to state property, or a risk to them. Chances are law enforcement will swing into action in that case. And considering the rationale behind DUI law in the first place, the latter scenario is quite common, perhaps more than the former. And when that happens, there is a wide range of penalties that could be incurred. The penalties for driving under the influence charge vary based on the circumstances of the case, such as damage caused and DUI history. Some of the possible penalties are discussed below.
Fines are, by far, one of the most common driving under the influence penalties. As a matter of fact, they probably are. For a fine to be imposed on a person facing a DUI charge, they must first be convicted by a competent court. Fines for driving under the influence generally range from about $500 to $2000, subject to state DUI law. However, they may increase according to the charge-related circumstances. For instance, the fines imposed on repeat offenders may be higher according to the number of previous convictions. Moreover, other running punishments, such as community service terms, may reduce the fines slightly.
Suspension of Driver’s License and Driving Privileges
This is the dread of practically every driver out there. But it happens to be a very common penalty in a DUI charge. The rationale behind this is that driving under the influence would be impossible if there were no driving at all. As such, it often targets repeat offenders. As with fines, restriction of driving privileges is often subject to a conviction of driving under the influence charge (or even unlawful refusal of testing) by a competent court. It may be as low as three to six months or as high as two years. Apart from a license suspension, a repeat offender’s car may be confiscated, or an Ignition Interlock Device may be deployed. An offender could also obtain a partial license for essential driving.
Community service is yet another common penalty that may be attached to a driving under the influence charge. This is also subject to a DUI conviction by a competent court. A community service sentence may be a matter of weeks or run into six months or more. The service period could see the offender tasked with an array of tasks for physical labor. Community service is often used as a more lenient substitute for jail terms for driving under the influence. As such, having it combined with other penalties in aggravated or repeat offenses is not uncommon. However, jail sentences are still considered in extreme cases, such as when a life has been taken due to a repeat DUI.
There are certain situations where alternative sentencing may be deployed for DUI offenses. One such method is mandatory treatment or therapy. The rationale behind this is the imposition of rehabilitative punishment for DUI, as opposed to deterrent or retributive punishment. Seeing as driving under the influence consequences may vary according to the severity of the offense, milder or first-time convictions may earn a treatment or therapy sentence. It would involve the offender enrolling at a rehabilitation center or with a specialist to help them deal with the underlying tendency of driving under the influence. The duration may range from a few weeks to six months or more.
Blood alcohol concentration is .08% in the DUI law for most states. Different factors contribute to high BAC, including the number of drinks and how the body metabolizes alcohol. So, a person can approximate if they are about to go over the legal limit.
Checking the type of alcohol, the number of drinks, and the space in between the drinks is helpful to prevent driving under the influence. Other factors include eating before drinking, not drinking while on medication, and not drinking while exhausted.
Keeping these factors in mind will help you stay within the right BAC. Having over-the-limit alcohol in your blood leads to impaired judgment, which can cause serious consequences.
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