January 28, 2022 | DUI
There are two different types of DUI charges for people under the age of 21. The first type of charge is only for underage drivers that have a BAC of over .02 but less than .08. If you are convicted, this can lead to a fine between $100 and $500, 20 hours of community service, and a driver’s license suspension.
The second type of underage DUI comes into play If your BAC is .08 or higher. In this situation, underage drivers face the same penalties as regular DUIs, which can include hefty fines, jail time, license suspension, and other penalties. The penalties for a DUI increase with the number of prior DUI convictions on your record.
Now, let’s discuss what you should do if you’re facing an underage DUI?
The first thing to do if you’re facing an underage DUI charge is to use your right to remain silent. Under the Fifth Amendment, you do not have to say anything to police that might incriminate you.
The best thing to do is to hand over your ID, identify yourself, and not answer any questions that could incriminate you. Often, a DUI case is lost due to someone trying to “talk their way out of it,” when they are really just making things worse. Other times, a cop will convince you that they will go easy on you if you are honest and tell the truth. This is a common ploy to get a confession.
Contact a Lawyer
If you are arrested or charged for an underage DUI, the most important thing you can do next is to contact an underage DUI lawyer. The penalties for an underage DUI can be very serious, and it is important that you take advantage of your right to legal counsel.
It is up to you to protect yourself, and hiring an attorney is the first step. Your lawyer will understand the complex DUI system and know how to fight for you.
They can do things like:
- Filing motions to have evidence like breath tests and blood tests thrown out of court
- Challenge the traffic stop as unlawful
- Argue that the police violated your Miranda Rights
- Negotiate with prosecutors for reduction or dismissal in charges
Hiring an aggressive, experienced DUI / OWI attorney means you will have a fighting chance. Do not waste any time wondering what to do – make the call.
Get Ready for Trial
The final thing to do if you’re facing an underage DUI charge, the final thing to do is to work with your lawyer to get ready for trial. It is critical that you go over every single thing that happened before, during, and after your interaction with police.
Your attorney needs to know every detail. Many times, cases are won and lost in the tiniest details. The police may have said or done something unlawful, which may mean evidence was illegally obtained. Your lawyer will also want to know about any potential witnesses that they can subpoena to testify on your behalf at trial. So, make sure to write down a list of witnesses for your lawyer to interview.
If your case is prepared for trial, it also puts your lawyer in a much stronger position to negotiate your case. If the attorney has uncovered favorable facts and evidence, they may be able to convince the prosecutor to offer a favorable plea deal. They may even be able to get the prosecutor to dismiss your case. But if they won’t, you’ll be ready to fight for an acquittal.
No young driver wants an underage DUI on their record. This can impact job and college applications, raise insurance costs, and subject one to other legal penalties. Fight back with everything you’ve got by hiring a good attorney from day one.