Every state takes DUI charges seriously. If you have DUI charges filed against you, then it is crucial that you take steps to defend yourself. Without a lawyer, you could face serious penalties by yourself, with no hope to defend against them. Most who defend themselves do not help their cases. If you are facing a DUI charge for the first time, it may help to understand what is going to happen next.

The Arrest

When you are pulled over under the suspicion that you were driving under the influence, the officer will have a number of tests for you. The first test may be the field sobriety test. This includes three different tests that will test your balance and coordination. Another test is the breathalyzer test, which looks at your blood alcohol concentration. In the U.S., if you have a BAC of .08 percent or above, then you are over the legal limit. If you are over the legal limit, you will be arrested and booked.

The Court Date

After you’re released, you will eventually receive a court date. The charges will come from the district attorney. When it comes to a DUI, you have to appear in court on the appropriate date. When you go to court, you can deny the charges, fight the charges, or attempt to receive lesser penalties.

The Penalties

There are a lot of different penalties for a DUI. When it comes to DUI, there are different levels. For instance, if this is a first time charge, you may face less serious penalties than a person who has been charged in the past. The penalties that you may face include:

  • Fines
  • Jail time
  • Suspended driver’s license
  • Drunk driving school
  • Probation

In addition to legal penalties, you may even see penalties with your auto insurance. Some insurers will raise your costs because they consider you a higher risk driver. There are other insurance carriers that will drop a driver who was convicted of a DUI. It is important to ask your lawyer about all of the possible consequences.

To know the ins and outs of the DUI process can make it a lot less intimidating. If you have a lawyer beside you to help, it might lessen the penalties, if not lead to dismissed charges entirely. To consult with a DUI lawyer make an appointment today.