Have you been convicted of drunk driving? Are you concerned about the behavior of your friends when out on the town? It’s important to know your options when it comes to hiring a DUI attorney and seeking potential expungement. Drunk driving and distracted driving are at an all-time high and studies estimate these figures won’t be reduced any time soon. Below is advice on how to navigate the legal system, receive expungement and avoid drunk or distracted driving.
What Is Drunk Driving?
Drunk driving is the act of operating a vehicle while under the influence of alcohol, illegal drugs or over-the-counter medications — the latter, such as allergy pills, have significant side-effects that include drowsiness and reduced motor control. Each day people will drive drunk nearly 300,000 times but fewer than 4,000 will actually be arrested and charged with a crime. Studies have even shown the average drunk driver will drive under the influence of alcohol or illegal substances 80 times before their first arrests. Every two minutes a person is injured in a drunk driving crash and, as a result, legal proceedings are attempting to reduce this number.
What Is Distracted Driving?
Drunk driving isn’t the only potentially deadly consequence on the open road. Ongoing awareness campaigns and convictions alike focus on the rate of distracted driving, characterized by a driver that has their attention compromised by mundane activities such as talking on a cell phone, changing the radio or eating food. Studies have shown at any given daylight moment across the country approximately 660,000 drivers are using cell phones or attempting to manipulate electronic devices while operating a vehicle.
What Is Expungement?
A criminal defense attorney can assist with seeking out expungement. This is the legal process of receiving assistance in wiping out any and all criminal records related to a case, normally delegated to first-time offenders. Whether or not you qualify can only be determined under the eye of a legal professional.
How Much Will It Cost?
While the costs may vary depending on whether or not this is a first-time conviction, a DUI conviction generally costs $20,000 or more. Additional fees can include, but are not limited to, consultation, court hearings and anti-drunk driving technology. All states have DUI laws that deem ‘per se intoxicated’ — this depends on the driver with a blood-alcohol concentration above 0.8%.
How Many Lawyers Are There?
The United States is home to a wide variety of legal specialties and legal firms ready to help you. Estimates have shown over one million lawyers currently working throughout the country — employment of lawyers is projected to grow 6% from 2014 to 2014, considered as fast as average for all occupations.
Should I Find A Lawyer?
If you have been convicted of drunk driving, it’s necessary to contact a DUI attorney to further explore your options. The Fifth Amendment protects against self-incrimination, also known as the right to remain silent, as well as double jeopardy. The Sixth Amendment provides criminal defendants with the right to legal representation as well as the right to confront witnesses. Lastly, the Eighth Amendment provides criminal defendants with the right to a reasonable bail as well as the right not to be subjected to any form of cruel and unusual punishment. Contact a DUI lawyer and see if you qualify for expungement.