The festive season is here, and we all know what that means – making merry. Family reunions, end of year parties, weddings, surprise parties, anniversaries, and so on. And if there’s one thing in common with all these parties and events is the presence of alcohol. If you are the drinking type, it’s best to bring someone along who will drive you back home. You don’t want to have one too many sips and end up facing the law.
Of course, many people drink and drive and are lucky enough to get away with it, but that doesn’t mean you will. So, it’s always best to be safe than sorry. We will highlight some of the possible things that could happen to you if you are caught driving under the influence of alcohol, to serve as a warning, in case you want to indulge.
Taken to the nearest police station
Once the police confirm that you are drunk, he or she will put you in a police vehicle and take you to the nearest jail or police station. Your fingerprints, as well as mug shots, will be taken. This is usually the best time to call a Tampa criminal defense attorney as he or she may help you mount a defense.
Face DUI charges
Usually, you’ll be issued a summon or ticket that states your court date. When that day comes, you will need to appear before the court to answer DUI charges. It’s here that you will plead guilty, deny the allegations, or try to fight the case.
Face the consequences
Different rulings may be made, one which is suspension or revocation of your driver’s license. You may also need to pay a fine – which will vary depending on other circumstances like if an accident happened and whether there was property damage or injuries – or go to jail even if it’s only for a day or two. A good lawyer can plead with the judge to give you a less severe punishment.
Meet the probation terms
Whether you were sentenced or not, you’ll likely have a probation sentence made by the judge. You need to complete these terms, failure to which you may attract jail term. Probation sentence is usually a monthly fee that you have to pay for the cost of supervising and administering your probate sentence.
Complete alcohol and drug education
In most cases, you’ll need to go to a drunken driving school before your driving privileges are returned. Note that these classes aren’t free, so you’ll need to pay to attend. The classes involve hours of DUI prevention education. In addition to this education, you may also need to go through an alcohol evaluation, where a trained counselor assesses your alcohol behavior to gauge whether or not you have an alcohol abuse disorder. This assessment involves a series of questions revolving around the impacts of alcohol on your life.
DUI can affect your life in ways that you never imagined. On top of the aspects mentioned above, you may attract higher car insurance or even be forced to install an ignition interlock device. That’s why you should let someone drive whenever you’ve had one too many.