Charged with a DUI? Don’t Fall for These Common Misconceptions
In Florida, there is no such thing as a minor drunk driving charge. A conviction will almost always result in serious consequences such as fines, jail time, and other penalties. However, with the amount of misinformation on the internet, it can be difficult to find out what’s to come in the weeks ahead. Most forums, Facebook pages, and websites are running rife with misleading statements and myths, more often than not leaving you more confused than before you hit “search”.
In this article, we separate fact from fiction to give you the answers you need to make informed decisions about your case. Let’s look at a few common misconceptions about DUI charges in Florida:
Myth #1: If You Test over the Legal Limit You Will Be Convicted
While breathalyzer tests are one of the most common methods used to determine if someone is driving under the influence, the results aren’t always accurate. Not only could the device be calibrated incorrectly, but the officer conducting the test could’ve done so improperly. A DUI attorney can investigate the arrest to determine if there were errors made during testing or whether there were issues with the breathalyzer itself. If the officers made any mistakes, you may be able to have the breath test results suppressed.
Myth #2: If You Fail Your Field Sobriety Tests You Are Guilty
From balance tests to coordination trials, officers may use a range of field sobriety tests to deduce whether a driver is under the influence or not. While such tests have been proven to help validate intoxication in most cases, there are many factors that could result in inaccurate findings.
For instance, if you have a disability, the officer may fail to consider how your condition might affect the outcome of certain field sobriety tests, leading them to believe you are under the influence when you are not. If you are able to prove that the results of these tests are inaccurate, such evidence may be ruled inadmissible in court.
Myth #3: You Won’t Face Serious Consequences If It’s Only Your First Offense
Contrary to popular belief, you won’t escape with just a slap on a wrist if it’s your first offense. Florida’s lawmakers have ramped up the penalties for those caught drunk driving, so even your maiden violation could land you in jail. Punishments could also include fines, community service, and the suspension of your license. Additionally, a conviction on your criminal record could affect your ability to find a job, rent an apartment, and further your education.
Speak to a DUI Defense Attorney Stuart, Florida Today
Were you arrested for driving under the influence? It may be in your best interests to discuss your situation with a Florida DUI lawyer. Todd A. Kawecki is a former prosecutor who can help protect your rights in the weeks ahead. To lock in a free case evaluation, dial 772-485-4500 or send us a message using our contact form HERE.