Did you or a loved one receive a DUI in Georgia? Read these 5 common DUI questions, then contact our attorneys to get started on your claim.
1) What are the penalties if I’m arrested for a first-time DUI?
I was speaking with a very young client of mine who was recently charged with DUI, and he was asking me about what the penalties were for a first-time DUI offense in Georgia. The penalties are 12 months either probated or in jail, up to a thousand dollar fine. You will be required to work 40 hours of community service. In addition, you will need to take a DUI class – it’s called DUI School – which is serviced by different organizations in our community. Normally, the 12 months is probated on a first-time DUI, and probation basically means that you report to an office on a monthly basis. You will also be required to pay a monthly probation fee during the time that you are being supervised by an officer.
2) Should I take a breathalyzer test if suspected of a DUI?
In Georgia, if you are charged with DUI, an officer will ask you whether or not you want to submit to different testing – blood, breath or urine testing. It is advisable to comply with the officer’s request. If you do not comply, then your license can be administratively suspended. What you can do, in addition to compliance with the officer’s request, is to get independent testing. You’re allowed to do that, and I would advise you to get a blood test independent of whatever testing the officer did. Again, these are very technical issues.
3) Can I refuse a field sobriety test?
I was speaking with a client the other day who came to see me because he was charged with a DUI. During the course of the stop, he actually refused to execute the field sobriety testing that the officer asked him to do. If you refuse field sobriety and if you refuse the testing – blood, breath, or urine – that’s called a refusal, and your license can be administratively suspended. You will get separate paperwork that indicates the administrative suspension. The timelines are very tight on those particular suspensions, so it’s very important that you see an attorney within 10 days after getting the DUI charge.
4) Could I go to jail for a DUI?
A real concern for my DUI clients or clients of mine who are charged with a DUI is whether or not there could be any jail time involved in the resolution of their case. In Georgia, you can be punished by up to one year in jail, with a thousand dollar fine, plus community service and some other particular aspects of the sentence that are required. If it is a first-time DUI, as a general rule, if there’s no accident or no injury involved in the DUI, you will not serve time in jail. If, however, you’re in a situation where you have multiple charges, there may be a stronger consideration for going to jail.
5) How long will a DUI stay on my record?
The criminal history of an individual is very important. It can affect employment and those sorts of things. We get calls often asking how long a DUI will stay on your criminal record. In fact, it will stay on your criminal record indefinitely. There used to be some talk about a seven-year term – that’s not true. I have reviewed criminal histories in my practice that go back to the 1970s, and those DUIs are still on the record. We can help you in your particular case.
There may be some things that we can do about restricting and sealing your record, but every case is different.
Are you or a loved one in the process of a criminal defense case in Statesboro, Springfield, or Swainsboro and have questions? Contact the experienced Georgia DUI attorneys at Hall & Navarro today for a consultation and case evaluation. We can help get your life back on track.