Not all charges for driving under the influence are the same. Some carry stiffer penalties than others. As you may already know, you can be arrested for a DUI if your blood alcohol concentration is 0.08 percent or higher. What you may not know is that if your levels read 0.20 or more in Idaho, you can be charged with an excessive DUI. This enhanced charge can lead to more severe punishment than a standard DUI.
Your first excessive DUI conviction will be a misdemeanor. However, if you get a second conviction within five years, you’ll be facing felony charges. Felony convictions don’t only bring criminal penalties; they result in a lifetime of negative personal, civil, and social consequences. Your education, employment, and reputation could all be irreparably damaged.
If you’re facing excessive DUI charges in Idaho, you need to reach out to a Boise DUI attorney as soon as possible. You will need a skilled and experienced lawyer to defend you in court if you want to secure the best possible outcome.
Penalties for an Excessive DUI in Idaho – First Offense
If it’s the first time you’ve been convicted of an excessive DUI, you’re likely to face:
- Jail time. You’ll have to spend at least ten days in jail but the maximum sentence the state can impose in 365 days.
- License suspension. It is mandatory that your driver’s license will be suspended for one year.
- Fines. You may have to pay up to $2,000.
- Alcohol evaluation. Your alcohol use will come under scrutiny. Depending on the findings, you will have to undergo rehabilitation, education or counseling.
- Ignition interlock device installation. Following the passing of a new law in 2019, all first-time DUI offenders have to install an IID in their vehicle for an entire year after their license is reinstated. You would have to blow into the device before you can start your vehicle. If the device detects alcohol, you won’t be able to start the car. You will have to pay for the installation and maintenance of the IID.
- Victim impact panel attendance. This is a class in which you would have to listen to people who were affected by DUI crashes. They may have suffered injuries in a crash or lost a loved one because of a drunk driver. They share the physical, emotional, and financial impact that the incident had on them and their families. The aim of a victim impact panel to help drunk driving offenders understand the impact of their actions.
- Mandatory SR-22 high-risk insurance. When your license is reinstated, you will have purchase SR-22 insurance and present proof that you did so. This guarantees that you have coverage if you cause any accidents in the future.
As you can see, the penalties for an excessive DUI conviction are wide-ranging and your life will change considerably. If you get convicted again, the punishment will be even harsher.
Penalties for an Excessive DUI in Idaho – Second Offense
If within five years of the first conviction you’re found guilty of another excessive DUI, it will be a felony. The maximum fine will increase to $5,000 and you will lose your driving privileges for between one and five years after you get out of jail. You will also have to install an ignition interlock device on any car you drive.
How An Attorney Will Help You
There are a number of defense tactics that attorneys use. For example, they may question the accuracy of the field sobriety or breathalyzer test. They may also challenge whether the officer had reasonable grounds for pulling you over in the first place. Several other defenses may apply depending on the circumstances surrounding your arrest. That’s why it’s so important to tell your lawyer everything that happened from the moment you were pulled over.
Contact the Experienced Boise DUI Lawyers at the Trilogy Law Group
If you’re facing any type of DUI charges in Idaho, you need to take them seriously. Don’t just hand your fate over to the state. Call a DUI lawyer in Boise as soon as possible and get expert advice on your case. We’ll listen to the facts, do our own investigations, and come up with the best defense strategy. We’ll do everything we can to keep you from having a criminal conviction against your name. If that’s not possible, we’ll work hard to get you the minimum punishment. Don’t give up hope. Call us today to schedule a consultation and start the process of protecting your rights and your future.