There are many misconceptions about various different crimes and their corresponding punishments due to movies, television programming, and hearsay. Thus, you may have a plethora of questions if you happen to be charged with a crime such as a driving under the influence (DUI). Read through these frequently asked questions regarding DUI to learn more about the charges you face and why you should hire a DUI attorney.
What Might My Consequences Be?
A DUI or DWI conviction may carry a range of legal consequences including suspension of your license, community service, fines, and even jail time. In most cases these penalties are more severe for each repeat offense you are charged with. Even for your first offence you may be responsible for paying thousands of dollars in surcharges and may even be dropped from your insurance company. First time offenders are unlikely to be sentenced to jail time, although a high blood alcohol content may lead to elevated fines and community service.
Can I Refuse to Take a Field Sobriety Test?
In the event that you are pulled over and the police officer suspects that you have been driving under the influence, he or she may ask you to take a number of field sobriety tests. It is not mandatory for you to submit to these tests, which means that taking them will typically hurt your case because they provide extra evidence for the prosecutor. However, it is important to keep in mind that a breath test is not a field sobriety test; you are legally required to submit to a breath test, and refusal to do so will result in the suspension of your license.
Should I Represent Myself?
Although you are legally allowed to represent yourself, you should always look for a DUI attorney in Westwood to fight for you in court. Your DUI lawyer is not only very familiar with drinking and driving laws in Paramus and Bergen County, but he or she is also trained to fight these kinds of charges using specialized techniques. Your chances are always much better with a DUI lawyer on your side.