Don’t Let A DUI Ruin Your Life
There is no doubt that a charge for driving under the influence (DUI) can wreak havoc on your life. On top of fines and possible jail time, you may lose your license and even your job. If you are in the military, it can get you in trouble with your command. Your DUI arrest does not have to ruin your life, however. A skilled defense attorney can help you minimize the impact of this incident on your future.
Put your trust in a firm with local roots, local knowledge and unmatched experience. At Platt, Thompson and Buescher, our attorneys are Whidbey Island lawyers who know the local judges and prosecutors because we have tried countless cases with them. We know every law enforcement office on the island and how each one operates. We will use this knowledge to your advantage. Our success in the courtroom speaks for itself.
How Does Washington Define A DUI?
It is not illegal to drink and drive in Washington. The two activities become a crime when mixed to the extent that drinking affects the driving or the driver has .08 percent blood alcohol content (BAC) or a blood THC concentration of 5ng or more. You can also face arrest if you are so affected by alcohol, marijuana or any drug that you cannot safely drive.
The attorneys at Platt, Thompson and Buescher understand how law enforcement operates in pursuing a DUI case. They look for certain cues when they see a driver on the road and decide to pull them over on suspicion of drunk driving. They may look at the following when deciding to make an arrest:
- The way you were driving
- Whether they smell alcohol or marijuana
- Your ability to answer questions
- Your field sobriety test
- Results of a breath test or blood test
You do not have to comply with all of their requests. You must get out of your car if the officer orders you to, but not if they merely ask. You do not have to perform any of the voluntary tasks they ask of you, nor do you need to speak to them without a lawyer. You may politely decline, but they will most likely arrest you and bring you to the station for a formal breath or blood test. Refusing a formal chemical test does have consequences.
What Are The DUI Penalties In Washington?
DUI penalties increase with each offense and can sometimes seem harsher than the punishment for some felonies. For a first offense, you may spend at least one day in jail or have electronic home monitoring for 15 days, plus a minimum fine of $350. Your license will be suspended for 90 days, and you will have to have an ignition interlock device installed on your car.
Additional offenses within a seven-year period will greatly increase your penalties. Other factors that can affect your penalties include having a BAC of 0.15 percent or higher and having a passenger under the age of 16 in the car. Our attorneys will review the specific facts of your case with you, so you will know what to expect both from the process and possible outcomes for your situation.