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I was charged with a DUI. Now what?

White Law Office > Criminal Law  > I was charged with a DUI. Now what?

I was charged with a DUI. Now what?

Introduction:

Under Ohio law, driving under the influence, or “DUI”, is also generally referred to as operating a vehicle under the influence, or “OVI”. You will generally be convicted of OVI, or DUI, if you choose to operate a motor vehicle in the State of Ohio:

  1. With a blood alcohol concentration (“BAC”) of .08% or more; or,
  2. With a certain concentration of illegal narcotics in your system; or,
  3. While under the influence of alcohol, drugs, or a combination of the two.

 

Administrative Remedies:  

Whether you are convicted or not, at the time of the arrest for OVI/DUI, law enforcement has multiple administrative remedies available to it that will impact your ability to drive during the pendency of your case.

For instance, if your lawfully arrested on your first-offense OVI and your chemical tests extend beyond the legal limit, or even if you refused to take a test, law enforcement will immediately confiscate your license and you will be prevented from driving under an administrative license suspension from the Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles, or “BMV”. However, within the first thirty (30) days of said suspension, you have the ability to challenge said suspension. An attorney with the White Law Office, Co. can assist you in determining whether a challenge to said suspension would be appropriate or not under Ohio law.

You may refuse to submit to any and all chemical testing. However, this would be in direct violation of Ohio’s implied consent law and your license could then be automatically suspended for up to one (1) year. Again, there are opportunities to obtain driving privileges and an attorney with White Law Office, Co., would be able and willing to assist you in determining if you may obtain said privileges.

 

Penalties:

The criminal penalties for a first OVI conviction vary from a second, or third, OVI conviction and of course increase in severity depending upon your intoxication levels are high or low. The following is a chart regarding chemical tests that law enforcement may use to determine your level of intoxication. The following chemical tests conducted by law enforcement would be considered “high tests” for OVI purposes:

  1. Breath test: .17 or above;
  2. Urine Test: .238 or above;
  3. Whole Blood: .17 or above: and,
  4. Blood Serum/Plasma: .204 or above.  

 

Depending upon the test results, and if conducted pursuant to Ohio law, the following penalties are what you may expect to see if convicted of a:

 

  • 1st OVI conviction in 10 years, low test:

 

    1. Fine: $375.00-$1,075.00;
    2. Degree of Offense: Misdemeanor 1;
    3. Incarceration: 3 days to 6 months, or an alternate alcohol/drug program. Must suspend jail if Defendant enters an alternate alcohol/drug program;
    4. License suspension various from 1 to 3 years, and may be reduced in half if participating in alcohol/drug program; and/or,
    5. Driving Privileges: after 15 days.

 

  • 1st OVI conviction in 10 years, high test:

 

    1. Fine: $375.00-$1,075.00;
    2. Degree of Offense: Misdemeanor 1;
    3. Incarceration: 6 days up to 6 months, or 3 days jail and an alternate alcohol/drug program.
    4. License suspension various from 1 to 3 years, and may be reduced in half if participating in alcohol/drug program; and/or,
    5. Driving Privileges: after 15 days.

 

 

  • 2nd OVI conviction in ten years, low test:

 

    1. Fine: $525.00-$1,625.00;
    2. Degree of Offense: Misdemeanor 1;
    3. Incarceration: 10 days to 6 months, or 5 days jail and 18 days house arrest with electronic monitoring;
    4. Alcohol/drug assessment, recommended treatment mandatory;
    5. License suspension various from 1 to 7 years; and/or,
    6. Driving Privileges: after 45 days.

 

  • 2nd OVI conviction in ten years, high test:

 

    1. Fine: $525.00-$1,625.00;
    2. Degree of Offense: Misdemeanor 1;
    3. Incarceration: 20 days up to 6 months, or 10 days jail and 36 days of house arrest with electronic monitoring;
    4. Alcohol/drug assessment, recommended treatment mandatory;
    5. License suspension various from 1 to 7 years, and/or,
    6. Driving Privileges: after 45 days.

 

 

The penalties may increase as the number of offenses over the last ten (10) years increases and the penalties also increase depending upon the level of the test. Please note that there are additional penalties not discussed above, such as restricted plates, license interlock system, and even immobilization or forfeiture of the vehicle involved. The Judge in your case will have discretion in a handful of penalties in your case. However, some penalties are mandatory and cannot be avoided. Keep in mind that if you are under the age of 21 and are convicted of OVI or DUI, the penalties may be far greater than those included above.

From the above information, you can gather that Ohio’s OVI and DUI laws are very complicated. If you or a loved one is charged with OVI or DUI, please contact our criminal litigation team at the White Law Office, Co. and we will be glad to assist in protecting your rights.  

 

Matthew Kearney

Attorney At Law

 

This article is not intended to provide legal advice. It is intended to provide broad and general information about the law. Before applying the law discussed herein, please consult with your Attorney or the Attorneys at the White Law Office, Co.

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