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Is a DUI a Criminal Charge

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Is a DUI a Criminal Charge

If you are driving a vehicle under the influence of alcohol and or drugs, this is a serious offense. The first thing to do is contact your lawyer.

The DUI attorney can help you fight for your driver's license at the Department of Motor Vehicles. Your state may require that you request a hearing. This process is important. If you do not follow protocol of your state, you could end up with an administrative license suspension.

You probably are aware in the United States that it is unlawful charging you for the same crime twice. This law holds an exception for driving under the influence charges.

The Department of Motor Vehicles charges you for your offense. The Department of Motor Vehicles will suspend your driver's license. The DMV does not wait for formal charges appear on your record. This is not a good scenario as this suspension puts you into a high-risk automobile insurance, and the rate you pay is going to be extremely expensive. This is the only way that the Department of Motor Vehicles of your state will consider reinstating your driver's license. In the end, the DMV may find you not guilty of this charge.

The United States justice system charges you for the same offense. This is double jeopardy. You will be going into a court of law and a judge will hear your case. This court of law can also take your driver's license during your court hearings. Even if the DMV did not suspend your license and find you not guilty the judge, can find you guilty of this criminal offense and take your license. If this happens, the DMV has no choice but to suspend your license.

Most all of the states considers this charge as a misdemeanor. Pending the circumstance of your offense, the charges can become a felony. You do not want a felony charge placed on your record as the consequences of a felony lasts a lifetime. A felony affects every facet of your life from driving to employment.

Some states vary in their laws regarding misdemeanor versus a felony. You need to check and research your state laws. The standard rule across all states is that you must have a blood alcohol level of .08 percent. In this case, intoxication is legally present. When your blood alcohol level is over .08 upwards to .16 percent, your misdemeanor turns into a felony. Some states do not have this law.

If intoxicated while driving and you did not cause injury or death to another, your charges remain a misdemeanor. If you hurt or kill, another person while intoxicated, your misdemeanor can turn into a felony.

If you have more than one misdemeanor charge in 10 years, then next one could be a felony criminal charge. Many of these states passed laws protecting children in a car with an intoxicated driver. If caught, your criminal charge turns into a felony. Most states designate children to be 15 years of age or younger.

If met with criminal charges of a misdemeanor, and you drive anyway, your misdemeanor turns into a felony. Some state laws make this punishable by a prison sentence for up to three years.

Remember, a DUI warrants a criminal charge in all states.