A driving under the influence (DUI) conviction, even if it is your first offense, could have a significant impact on your life in various ways. You may be unable to drive, lose your job, forced to undergo substance abuse treatment, and even go jail.
Aside from the statutory penalties for a criminal conviction, those with a DUI conviction likely will experience collateral consequences. Increased insurance premiums and mandatory installation of ignition interlock devices, both can cause financial hardships.
Because of these collateral consequences to your driver’s license, you want to contact an experienced Front Range DUI attorney immediately after you receive one, don’t wait! Many people don’t know they only have 7 days to request a Hearing on the issue of revocation of their license and once you miss that opportunity, you cannot get it back! Jenn & Justie have handled many DMV hearings and know how to assist with the initial stages of both DUI and DMV consequences, to learn more call our experienced attorneys today.
Colorado Revised Statutes § 42-4-1301 defines the criminal offense of driving under the influence (DUI) of alcohol, drugs, or a combination of the two. This statute defines DUI as occurring when individuals drive a motor vehicle after drinking or using drugs to the extent that it renders them substantially incapable mentally or physically to exercise the appropriate level of judgment, control, and due care necessary to safely operate vehicles.
Individuals also may commit driving under the influence per se under this statute if they have a blood alcohol content (BAC) of 0.08 percent or more within two hours of operating a motor vehicle. A potential affirmative defense to DUI per se exists if we provide evidence that someone drank alcohol after they stopped driving or demonstrate that driving occurred outside of two hours of BAC testing.
Another variation of DUI under this statute is driving while ability impaired (DWAI). This offense occurs when individuals drive a motor vehicle after consuming alcohol or drugs and that they are unable even to the slightest degree, mentally or physically, to operate a vehicle safely. Evidence of a BAC that is between 0.05 percent and 0.08 percent may create a rebuttable presumption that drivers have committed driving while ability impaired (DWAI).
All DUI offenses carry the potential for severe penalties that could substantially impact the futures of these individuals. For those who are facing charges of DUI, DUI per se, or DWAI, getting the advice of an experienced DUI lawyer in Front Range familiar with the laws and procedure may be highly beneficial.
Driving under the influence is a traffic misdemeanor offense under Colorado law. DWAI and DUI per se also are traffic misdemeanor offenses. If individuals have a BAC of 0.15 percent or more, then they too will face penalties as a repeat offender.
A first-time DUI conviction can result in the following penalties:
Individuals also may need to complete DUI education courses of a certain length and attend a MADD victim impact panel. First-time offenders may be eligible to have any jail sentence suspended if they comply with specific requirements, such as abstaining from alcohol use for one year from the date of sentencing, participating in a substance abuse evaluation, and completing education or treatment programs based on that evaluation.
Predictably, penalties grow steadily harsher when individuals have one or more prior DUI or related convictions. Individuals may be subject to longer jail terms, higher fines, lengthier license suspensions, and mandatory installation of ignition interlock devices.
Furthermore, a DUI, DUI per se, or DWAI offense becomes a Class 4 felony offense after three or more previous convictions for DUI, DWAI, vehicular homicide, or vehicular assault. A felony DUI is very serious in Colorado and could result in a lengthy period of incarceration if not properly defended. If you have prior DUI convictions, even if they are 30 years old and from a different state, it is imperative to contact a Colorado DUI lawyer to get some advice on how to proceed.
A first DUI conviction could be highly damaging to your professional and personal life, but subsequent convictions could cause even more severe implications for your future. Avoiding some of the unwanted consequences of a DUI or DWAI offense could be vital to protecting your future. As a result, you may want to contact a Colorado DUI lawyer as quickly as possible following an arrest. Both Jenn & Justie have defended these types of cases and know how to help you go through the process and fight for the best outcome for your case.