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Benefit from the Experience of Attorneys Bill and Valerie Sherman Former Assistant Attorney General, Assistant County Attorneys and Magistrate Judge

Frequently Asked Questions

Driving Under the Influence in Roswell

Have you been charged with the offense of driving under the influence in Roswell? DUI is a serious offense that can be very difficult to defend, especially if you do not have adequate knowledge of the case at hand. Our firm wants to help you gain a better understanding of your case by answering your questions. Contact us for further legal guidance.

  • Was my DUI stop legal?

    Police officers are required to have probable cause to perform a traffic stop. The cause may be a traffic violation, defect in the vehicle's safety equipment, or a driving action that displays that the driver is intoxicated.

    Common reasons to stop a vehicle include:

    • Speeding
    • Failure to use signals
    • Rolling through a stop sign
    • Driving with burned-out lights

    If the police officer did not have a valid reason to pull you over, you may be able to use this as defense to your DUI.

  • What are the penalties for DUI?

    The penalty that you face in Georgia for your offense of driving under the influence will depend on how many previous offenses you have received. For just a first-time offense of driving under the influence, you can face 24 hours to 1 year in jail, fines of $300 to $1,000, as well as a license suspension of up to 1 year. Penalties continue to increase for each subsequent offense.

    Will I go to jail?
    For a conviction of driving under the influence, there is a good chance that you will go to jail. The length of time that you will spend incarcerated, however, depends on the number of offenses you have. The breakdown is as follows:

    • 1st Offense – 24 hours to 1 year
    • 2nd Offense – 3 days to 1 year
    • 3rd Offense - 15 days to 1 year
    • 4th Offense – 1 to 5 years

    You must serve the minimum sentence for your specific charge but the remaining time can be suspended or probated by the judge.

  • Will I lose my license?

    After being convicted for a DUI, you will lose your license for a temporary timeframe. The Georgia Department of Driver Services (DDS) will suspend your license for either being charged with DUI or for refusing to take a chemical test. The length of time in which it will be suspended depends on the circumstances of the arrest, including:

    • Your age
    • Your blood alcohol content (BAC)
    • Whether you refused a chemical test
  • What is a limited driving permit?

    You may be able to obtain a limited driving permit in Georgia if your license has been suspended. You may be eligible for the limited driving permit if you plead guilty to driving under the influence and it is your first offense within five years. DUI driving permits are known as limited driving permits and can be valid for 120 days from when you were convicted.

    What makes a DUI a felony?
    Driving under the influence (DUI) in Georgia will be considered a misdemeanor or felony. Most DUIs are classified as a misdemeanor, but you could be charged with a DUI felony if you have prior offenses on your record or you violated another law in addition to drinking and driving.

    Some of the circumstances that can lead to a felony DUI charge are:

    • Causing an accident that results in extensive property damage
    • Causing an accident that leads to serious personal injury
    • Causing an accident that results in wrongful death
    • Transporting a child while impaired
    • Arrests for a fourth DUI
  • What is a field sobriety test?

    Field sobriety tests are used by police officers to identify possible drivers who are under the influence of alcohol. They are roadside field sobriety tests that occur when an officer pulls over a driver and is suspicious that he or she is under the influence of alcohol. The three main field sobriety tests are:

    • Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus
    • Walk and Turn
    • One-leg Stand
  • What happens if I refuse a breath test?

    If you are arrested for DUI in Georgia, you should be aware of the consequences of refusing a chemical test, such as a breath test. You will be charged for refusing to submit to the breathalyzer test and may also be charged with DUI. The state can take your license because of the refusal to submit because of the Administrative License Suspension Process. You will have 10 days to request an ALS hearing to defend your driving privileges.

    Can I fight my DUI even if I fail a breath test?
    Even if you fail a breath test and your blood alcohol content is over the legal limit, you can still fight your DUI. There are many errors that can lead to a false BAC result and our firm can help you fight these charges. If the regulations for administering a breath test are not strictly observed, a false positive result may be shown.

    Some of the ways a breath test can be proven inaccurate include:

    • Operator error
    • Improper calibration of the device
    • Certain medical conditions
    • Environmental contamination of the sample
    • Inaccurate record-keeping
  • When should I hire a DUI lawyer?
    If you want to fight your DUI case and to pursue a reduction or dismissal of your charge, you should immediately hire an attorney. You will want to work with a lawyer who understands the laws relating to driving under the influence charges in Georgia. Whether you have been charged with DUI for a BAC result that was above the legal limit or you refused to submit to a breath test, you should get the legal help you need at once and contact our firm!

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