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New York City DWI Lawyer

New York's Strict DWI Laws

DWI Arrest

In the state of New York, law enforcement maintains strict policies when it comes to drinking and driving. Unlike many other states in the U.S., an individual can still be arrested and charged with driving while intoxicated (DWI) offense if their blood-alcohol concentration (BAC) is under the legal limit. This offense is known as a DWAI, or driving while ability impaired, offense. You can be charged with DWAI if it is determined by the arresting officer that you have been impacted by the effects of alcohol to the point that you should not be operating a vehicle.

If you were arrested for DWI in Scarsdale, Manhattan, Bronx, or Manchester, contact the Law Offices of Daniel A. Hochheiser to help you build a strategy to fight for your freedom.

Driving Under the Influence of Drugs

The same charges apply in the instance that a driver is suspected of driving under the influence of drugs As such, it is important to fully understand the scope of our state's drunk driving laws if you hope to avoid the serious penalties of a criminal conviction.

Law enforcement is often unforgiving. Consistently across the country, the legal limit of intoxication for drivers is 0.08%. In the case of underage drivers and commercially licensed drivers, however, the legal limits are 0.02% and 0.04%, respectively. As such, if you have been pulled over and asked to submit a breath sample that was determined to be above the appropriate BAC level, you were likely arrested and charged with DWI.

Similarly, law enforcement often utilizes field sobriety testing—which is a series of three physical and cognitive activities that are used to generally determine a driver's level of intoxication:

  • The one-leg stand
  • The horizontal gaze nystagmus
  • The walk and turn

These were developed by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration as a way for officers in the field to gauge a driver's ability to operate a motor vehicle. Performing poorly on any of these may tests may also lead to an arrest.

What are the Penalties You Can Expect

If you have been arrested and charged with any type of DWI offense in the state, you are likely aware of the fact that you could face severe legal penalties in the wake of a guilty verdict. Depending on your blood-alcohol concentration at the time of your arrest and whether or not you have a prior conviction on your record, however, the penalties will be decided accordingly. As such, the sentencing is carried out as follows:

First DWAI Offense:

  • Up to 15 days in jail
  • License suspension for 90 days
  • Payment of mandatory surcharge
  • Fines from $300 - $500

Second DWAI Offense:

  • Up to 30 days in jail
  • License suspension for 6 months
  • Alcohol evaluation and/or rehabilitation
  • Payment of mandatory surcharge
  • Fines from $500 - $750

First DWI Offense:

  • Up to 1 year in jail
  • License suspension for 6 months
  • Payment of mandatory surcharge
  • Fines from $500 - $1,000
  • Probation for 3 years

Second DWI Offense:

  • Up to 1 year in jail
  • License suspension for 1 year
  • Payment of mandatory surcharge
  • Fines from $500 - $1,000
  • Probation for 3 years

If you have been charged with any of the drinking and driving offenses above, or even a felony DWI, it is important to make sure that you enlist the help of a legal professional immediately. Not only could you face jail time and hefty fines, but you could risk the chance of obtaining a mark on your criminal record. For this reason, you should not hesitate to retain the help that you will need to successfully combat your charges. Contact a criminal lawyer from our firm today for more information.

New York's Implied Consent Laws

Just like all other states across the country, New York maintains implied consent laws. This means that anytime a person obtains a driver's license in the state, they have inadvertently given their consent to submit to chemical testing in the event that a law enforcement officer believes that they are under the influence or alcohol and/or drugs. For this reason, if you are pulled over and asked to submit to a breathalyzer test and you refuse, there will be legal consequences. Refusing to submit to a chemical test for the first time could result in up to one year in jail, a $500 fine and the suspension of your driver's license.

For this reason, it is usually best to comply with these procedures and then combat the evidence later on, if at all possible. Similarly, refusing to submit a breath, blood or urine sample does not mean that you will not still be arrested and charged with a DWI offense, and your refusal may also be used as evidence of your guilt by the prosecution during your trial. To avoid the ramifications of a DUI conviction, contact a NYC criminal defense attorney from the Law Offices of Daniel A. Hochheiser today.

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