The State of New York takes DWI seriously. The administrative and criminal penalties that you may face for driving while intoxicated are different depending on your blood alcohol concentration and how impaired you were. Generally, there are more significant penalties for a first offense DWI if your blood alcohol content was higher. However, there are other factors that can affect the penalties that are imposed. White Plains DWI lawyer Mark A. Siesel has substantial experience in handling DWI cases. Often, our clients are concerned with how the charges may affect their driving privileges, jobs, and families. We provide aggressive, skillful legal representation to fight possible restrictions on your license as well as DWI charges.DWI and DWAI
There are multiple charges that you could face if you were caught driving while intoxicated or while the police believed that you were intoxicated. A DWI charge can be brought when a driver’s blood alcohol concentration was .08% or greater or when a driver was impaired to a substantial extent.
A lesser included offense of a DWI is a DWAI. A DWAI is charged if your ability to operate a car in a reasonable, prudent way was impaired to any degree. However, to be convicted of a DWI based on how impaired you were, as opposed to your blood alcohol content, you need to have been impaired to a substantial degree. Penalties for DWAI are not as harsh as they are for DWI; for example, the maximum period of incarceration is 15 days. In some cases, it is a good result to plead to a DWAI rather than going to trial for a DWI, but you should consult a DWI attorney in White Plains before making a plea deal.
An aggravated DWI charge can be brought when a driver’s blood alcohol content was .18% or more or when a driver was driving while intoxicated with a minor passenger who was 15 years old or younger. You can be charged with driving while ability impaired (DWAI) when your capacity to operate your vehicle prudently was impaired at all by alcohol. Similarly, you can be charged with DWAI if your ability to operate a car prudently was impaired at all by drugs, or when your capacity to drive was impaired at all by some combination of drugs and alcohol.Hardship Licenses
Your driver’s license will be suspended if you are charged with DWI—before the prosecutor has established that you were driving while intoxicated beyond a reasonable doubt. This is because a driver’s license is considered a privilege. It may be possible to obtain a hardship license to drive to and from work, school, or medical care. Our White Plains DWI attorney may be able to help you obtain this hardship license if you are eligible for this relief and you can show an extreme hardship. A hardship license, if obtained, allows you to drive during certain hours and days for certain permissible reasons.Penalties
For a first offense DWI when your blood alcohol content was .08%-.18%, your license can be suspended for a minimum of six months. Drivers charged for the first time with DWI do not face a minimum jail time. However, it is possible to be sentenced to up to a year of jail. The fines may be $500-$1,000. A DUI can stay on your record for years, depending on the situation. If your blood alcohol content was .18% or greater, you can be fined $1,000-$2,500.
Your driver’s license can be suspended for one year if your blood alcohol content was .18% or more or if you were under 21 years old. If you refused to take a chemical test, you are likely to have your license suspended for one year, and you will need to pay fees and install an ignition interlock device to get it reinstated.Consult an Experienced DWI Lawyer in White Plains
It can be stressful to be charged with DWI. Our firm takes the time to explain DWI charges as well as potential penalties. If we are retained, we can contact prosecutors to review the evidence against you, and we can try to obtain a hardship license for you if appropriate. If you are charged with DWI in White Plains, you should call the Law Office of Mark A. Siesel. We also represent drivers in Brooklyn, the Bronx, and Queens, as well as Westchester, Kings, Putnam, Dutchess, Orange, Rockland, Sullivan, and Ulster Counties. Call us at (914) 428-7386 or complete our online form.
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