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Florida DUI Penalties

If you’ve been pulled over for driving under the influence, you may be unsure whether fighting your charge is worth it. You might be concerned that you have no chance to fight back, so you might as well take the consequences, right? Unfortunately, that may be a dangerous mistake.

Florida DUI penalties can be costly, leaving you to deal with the consequences for some time after your conviction. Whether you’re just facing a new arrest or have decided to head to trial, you need a Tampa DUI lawyer from Hersem Law on your side. We can help you fight back to try to reduce or dismiss your Florida DUI charges.

Effects on Your License of a DUI

One of the initial effects of a DUI will involve your license.  The administrative sanctions for a first-time DUI offender will result in a six-month suspension if your BAC was above .08 or a one-year suspension if you refused to provide a breath, urine, or blood sample.  

This suspension can be challenged, but you only have ten days from the date of arrest to do so, which means you must act quickly to understand your options and make the right decision for your particular situation. If don’t act within this ten-day period, you will automatically face a hard suspension for either thirty or ninety days, where no driving is allowed for any purpose whatsoever.  

To make matters even more complicated, the criminal process can lead to an additional suspension if you are convicted of DUI. While most traffic violations will add up to a license suspension over time, a DUI conviction is grounds for an additional six-month to one-year suspension.  

In either situation, we can help you obtain a hardship license that allows you to drive to and from work, school, and for medical or religious purposes. Without this permit, you may have to find other ways to get around, like public transport or carpooling. These options may not be as convenient, leaving you in more trouble than before.

Criminal Charges for Drunk Driving

Unfortunately, criminal charges for drunk driving can hurt more than just your license and your wallet. In fact, you might find yourself sitting in a jail cell for months. For first offenders, a standard DUI conviction could leave you in jail for six months; an enhanced DUI conviction is punishable by up to nine months; and if your charge involves an accident with property damage, you can be sentenced up to one year in jail.  

Second and subsequent DUI charges can carry even more jail time, and, depending on your history, you could be facing a mandatory term of imprisonment if you are convicted.  

That can deeply affect your personal life. A jail sentence disrupts your daily life, potentially leaving you without a job and without housing. Even when you’re released, you might find yourself struggling to deal with the high cost of probation and the other conditions imposed by the Judge.  

DUI charges will remain on your record, too. If you receive a DUI conviction in Florida, your charge may show up in background checks for up to seventy-five years. That can affect your career, your housing, your insurance, and more. As such, you need to defend yourself now to avoid major future consequences.

Defend Yourself against Drunk Driving Charges

Unfortunately, dealing with a DUI isn’t easy. You need to defend your freedom and your license in court. Florida DUI penalties can be high, after all, so you need to protect your future.

Fortunately, a lawyer from Hersem Law can help. You need someone who understands what’s at stake with your case and who will fight for your freedom. Your lawyer will fight back to protect you from these harsh penalties, starting with a free strategy session. There, we’ll help you decide the best approach for your drunk driving case.

If you’re struggling with potentially serious DUI penalties, get the help you need soon. Reach out to us by calling 813-251-7291 or by filling out the following online form.