Florida DUI Defense
Have you been arrested for a driving under the influence (DUI) offense in Miami, Florida? DUI cases are time critical! It will be vital to the strength of your DUI case to contact a Miami DUI lawyer immediately following an arrest. All DUI cases require attention to time limits, but more importantly, a lawyer must have the time to focus on the details of your case. Whereas some lawyers may apply a one-size-fits-all approach to your DUI matters, at Jonathan Blecher, P.A., I take the necessary time to pay attention to every single detail and every piece of evidence applicable to your case.
Miami DUI Attorney Assists with the Following Legal Matters
After a DUI Arrest
Being arrested for driving under the influence (DUI) does not mean that you are guilty of the charge. There are steps that you can take to lessen the chances of losing your DUI case if you have been arrested for a DUI-related offense. You have the right to speak with a DUI defense attorney immediately after an arrest, and doing so could help strengthen your case.
Asleep Behind the Wheel
Many people assume that they must be actually driving a motor vehicle while under the influence to be arrested or be charged with a DUI offense. In Florida, however, you can be arrested for simply being in actual physical control of the vehicle while under the influence. This can include falling asleep behind the wheel of a car, even when parked with the engine turned off. With the right representation, there could be many DUI defenses available for your DUI charge of being asleep behind the wheel.
Breath, Blood and Urine Tests
Breath, blood and urine tests are all methods that law enforcement officials use to determine the blood alcohol content (BAC) level of an individual suspected to be driving under the influence. If you are discovered to have more than the legal 0.08% BAC limit, do not assume that the evidence against you is too incriminating to fight! There are many ways to challenge the validity of sobriety tests, such as by addressing issues of improperly calibrated equipment, improper procedure, or unlawful search by a law enforcement agent.
Commercial Driver's License (CDL) DUI
If you have been arrested for a CDL DUI, not only are you facing potential criminal penalties, but your line of work could be threatened. Because commercial drivers are held to higher standards than regular drivers, it is imperative that you seek strong legal representation after a charge of CDL DUI. A CDL DUI conviction could result in a permanent license revocation and, depending on your offense, could be punishable by jail time, steep fines, reinstatement fees, probation, and the loss of your job.
Chemical Testing Regulations
In order for you to be convicted of a DUI charge, the prosecutor must be able to prove that your BAC level is actually above 0.08% while operating, or being in actual physical control of, a vehicle. It is important to remember that the actual results of the sobriety test are not what prove your guilt in a DUI-related offense. In order for the prosecution to prove that you were over the 0.08% legal limit at the time that you got behind the wheel, state prosecutors must be able to estimate what your BAC was when you were first stopped by law enforcement. If you were pulled over, consult a DUI defense attorney to help determine whether your DUI was handled correctly and in accordance to the law.
Driving with a 0.08% BAC Level
If you are found controlling a vehicle or driving with a 0.08% BAC, law enforcement may charge you with driving with an unlawful blood / breath alcohol. Penalties typically tend to range based on a number of factors, but you can be suspended for six months for the first offense and one year or more for any additional offense. In order to fight a DUI charge and protect your driving privileges, consult a DUI defense lawyer immediately after an arrest.
Florida has some of the toughest DUI laws in the entire nation. Prosecutors will do anything in their power to prosecute you to the fullest extent of the law. As a result, you will need an experienced DUI defense lawyer to help you make informed choices regarding some of the most important legal decisions you will make in your life. Your DUI lawyer should not take your DUI charges lightly and should be able to create the most effective DUI defense strategy available to your circumstances. Retain this level of representation from my firm.
DUI Diversion Programs
By participating in DUI diversion programs, such as Miami's Back on Track Program, you could avoid the stigma that is often associated with a DUI conviction. Because admission into the program is not automatic, a DUI defense lawyer can help you with the admission process, guide you through the necessary steps, and apply for a criminal record sealing.
DUI is an increasing problem, and many innocent persons are charged each day with DUI-related offenses. In order to better understand your circumstances, it is wise to become more knowledgeable about the legal process and what you may be facing. Because DUI laws and procedures are often very confusing, read through answers to some DUI FAQs to learn more.
According to Florida laws, if you were charged and arrested for driving with a blood alcohol content (BAC) level over 0.08%, your license will be subject to administrative suspension. After a DUI arrest, you will only have 10 days to either request a Formal Review Hearing at DHSMV in order to challenge your driver's license suspension, or choose to waive the Formal Review Hearing and apply for a Review of Eligibility for a Business Permit. Consulting an experienced DUI lawyer during this process can help you learn what to expect, protect your rights, and effectively prepare you for your DHSMV hearing.
DUI manslaughter will result in permanent revocation of a driver's license. If you are found guilty of a DUI manslaughter charge, you must wait at least five years before gaining eligibility to apply for a hardship license at the Bureau of Administrative Reviews. Other required consequences include DUI school or a treatment program. In order to reinstate a driver's license or obtain a hardship license, the driver must receive a favorable recommendation from a Special Supervision Services Program.
DUI Manslaughter with Prior
If another person was killed in a DUI accident and you have been arrested or convicted of a DUI offense previously, you could be facing even more serious penalties. Because Florida has among the strictest DUI laws in the nation, a DUI manslaughter with a prior DUI conviction could result in enhanced penalties including jail time, fines, community service, treatment program attendance, and permanent driver's license revocation. DUI manslaughter with prior offense charges do not allow provisions for obtaining a hardship license.
DUI with Injury
If a DUI-related accident results in serious injuries to another person, a DUI charge can escalate to include life-changing consequences, such as felony penalties. If your DUI accident caused a serious or catastrophic injury to another person, you could be facing up to five years in prison. Because DUI with injury offenses include complex legal issues, it is wise to enlist the help of a qualified DUI defense attorney who can address the issues as quickly and efficiently as possible.
DUI laws tend to vary from one jurisdiction to another, so it can be challenging to determine whether your DUI offense is punishable by a felony penalty. While most first DUI offenses can be punishable by a misdemeanor conviction, some first-time DUI offenses can be raised to felonies if someone was injured or killed as a result of the driver's impairment. If a victim was killed in a DUI accident, you could be charged for a felony vehicular manslaughter offense, which carries a higher sentence upon conviction. To determine if your DUI offense is a felony, consult a DUI defense attorney. You could be facing a state prison sentence of one year or more.
If you have been charged with your first DUI, you may be facing penalties including license revocation of 180 days to 1 year, which will become effective on your conviction date. Before the expiration of the license revocation period, you may apply for a hardship license. DUI school completion is mandatory and treatment may be required. Once your penalties are satisfied, you may be eligible to apply for a hardship license at the Bureau of Administrative Reviews.
Florida DUI Laws
Florida has among the strictest DUI laws in the entire nation. Florida DUI laws provide for an immediate suspension of your driver's license after an arrest. In most cases, Florida DUI laws will only offer a 10-day period in which someone can take action against a license suspension. Due to recent Florida legislation being passed, it has become increasingly harder for DUI lawyers to challenge DUI cases or obtain lesser charges. With the right legal representation on your side, however, a DUI attorney can still help get your charges reduced or even dismissed.
Florida DUI Penalties
Florida DUI penalties range in severity according to the type of offense, the amount of alcohol found to be present in a person's system, the age of the driver, and presence of prior convictions. Any sentence will be quantified once all of these determining factors are analyzed. Typically, first-time offenses warrant misdemeanor charges resulting in fines and license suspension. Any subsequent offenses could warrant felony charges resulting in fines, license suspension, jail time, and DUI school and treatment program attendance.
If you have been convicted of a fourth DUI or any subsequent DUI offense, you will be facing severe consequences. Florida DUI laws require that a fourth DUI conviction result in a permanent driver's license revocation with no possibility for a hardship license. To protect your privileges as a driver, it will be imperative to your case to speak with a DUI defense lawyer immediately after an arrest.
Illegal Blood Tests
Florida law and the U.S. Constitution prohibit law enforcement from taking your blood for a DUI investigation unless there has been a serious injury or death due to an alleged DUI accident or if a breath test is impossible or impractical. If law enforcement is able to prove reasonable cause to believe that you were under the influence of alcohol and that your impaired driving caused the DUI accident involving serious bodily injury, then officers may request a blood test. If you were subjected to an illegal blood test that led to a DUI arrest, you may have grounds to challenge the admissibility of that blood test and need to consult a Miami DUI defense attorney.
Illegal Traffic Stops
Before a law enforcement officer can stop an individual while on the road, the officer must be able to prove a reasonable or "founded" suspicion that an individual has committed, is committing, or is about to commit a crime. In order to stop an automobile and request identification from its occupants, an officer must prove reasonable suspicion to warrant an investigation. Many Florida drivers do not know that this law actually protects drivers to a great extent because it prohibits officers from pulling a driver over based on unfounded suspicion. If you think you were pulled over illegally before a DUI arrest, speak immediately with a DUI defense lawyer who can begin to construct a strong defense on your behalf.
Florida is an implied consent state, which means that any driver with a valid license agrees to submit to a chemical test if suspected of DUI. Florida drivers only have 10 days to request a formal hearing to prevent the suspension of a driver's license after a DUI arrest. Even first-time offenders may face a license suspension for up to one year, so it is crucial to speak with a knowledgeable DUI defense attorney for a strong defense.
Many Florida drivers have probably heard of Miranda rights but do not actually know what they are, what they do, and who they protect. According the United States Constitution, your Miranda rights protect your right to remain silent and right to avoid self-incrimination. If you have been pulled over or arrested for a DUI-related offense, you do not have to say or do anything that suggests that you have committed a crime! In order to exercise your rights, make sure to vocalize your desire to remain silent. Once you invoke your right, law enforcement cannot use your silence against you.
These types of cases demand specific attention from a DUI defense attorney. Out-of-state DUIs are just as serious as other DUI offenses and involve complex laws. There are two primary laws that govern the sharing of ticketing information between states. To protect your rights as a driver, enlist the help of a DUI defense lawyer who has a strong understanding of the Driver's License Compact and the Non-Resident Violators Compact to create a strong defense for you.
Roadside Sobriety Tests
In addition to breath tests, blood tests, or urine tests, prosecutors will try to prove your impairment by attacking your performance on roadside sobriety exercises. Even if you failed a roadside sobriety exercise, do not think that the evidence against you is all that incriminating. Because these exercises are subjective and prone to inaccuracy, your ability to operate a vehicle should not be judged by your performance. If you were subjected to roadside sobriety exercises, speak with an experienced DUI lawyer to construct the best defense for your DUI arrest.
Sealing Your Record
Being convicted of a DUI-related offense does not mean that you must suffer lifelong consequences. There are plenty of opportunities for you to expunge - or seal - your criminal record. Completing a Back on Track Diversion Program could result in no conviction on your record. Unfortunately, many judges improperly require you to submit to fingerprinting after pleading "no contest" to a reduced DUI charge of reckless driving. Fingerprinting could result in a record indicating that you were convicted of the offense, leading to difficulty in applying for loans or employment in the future. To ensure your record stays clean, consult a knowledgeable DUI defense attorney.
If you have been convicted of your second DUI offense within five years of your first conviction, penalties will include a long license revocation. Unlike a first DUI offense, you will not be permitted to apply early for a hardship license. If you are convicted of DUI within five years of your first DUI offense, your license will be revoked for five years, and you must attend and complete DUI school and treatment. You may apply for a hardship license after one year of serving a license revocation sentence.
The DUI Traffic Stop
It is incredibly easy to commit any of the top 10 DUI mistakes if you are pulled over for a DUI traffic stop. In order to help you prevent an arrest or lessen the chances of losing a DUI case, it is essential that you know the procedures and standards that comprise a DUI traffic stop. If you are concerned about being pulled over and being charged with DUI, or if you have already been charged, you do not have to let a conviction ruin your life or change your future! With effective counsel from a Miami DUI defense lawyer, you could properly prepare yourself for what to expect in a DUI traffic stop.
A third DUI offense in more than 10 years will result in a 180-day to a 1-year driver's license revocation, unless any of the prior convictions fall within a 10-year period of any other. If you were convicted of DUI twice within five years, your driver's license revocation period will last five years with no possibility for early application of a hardship license. While a third DUI conviction within a 10-year period of your prior convictions will result in a 10-year license revocation and mandatory completion of DUI school and treatment. You must serve at least two years of the revocation period before applying for an early hardship license.
Top 10 DUI Mistakes
Getting pulled over can be a frightening and stressful process for many Florida drivers. Florida drivers need to be aware of the top 10 DUI mistakes that drivers make when a routine traffic stop escalates into a DUI-related traffic stop. Becoming informed of the mistakes many people make can help you prevent an arrest in the future.
Underage DUI is when someone under the legal drinking age of 21 is found to be operating a vehicle with a BAC of 0.02% or more. Florida has enacted a "zero tolerance" policy for any underage person who is charged with DUI. If the young person is discovered to be under the influence while behind the wheel, the underage driver may face serious consequences for illegal intoxication.
Were you arrested for a DUI-related offense? Call now!
If you were arrested for a DUI-related offense in Florida, do not think that you will automatically be found guilty of all of the charges. You do not have to take your accusations or penalties lying down. With the help of an experienced and knowledgeable Miami DUI defense lawyer, your DUI allegations can be a thing of the past. My personal goal is to help you move on with your life in a positive way.
I personally handle every case that comes through my firm's doors. I have direct control and responsibility for your case and I pride my service on this strong foundation. As a former prosecutor and skilled defense lawyer with more than 30 years of legal experience, I have been chosen time and time again to represent thousands of DUI cases in Miami, Florida.
My high standards of ethics and commitment to effective legal representation have earned me an Avvo Rating of 10.0 Superb. If you are ready to discuss your DUI-related case, contact Jonathan Blecher, P.A. as soon as possible. I will never hand your case over to an inexperienced lawyer, associate, or partner. You can trust that, from the moment you call my offices to the final outcome of your DUI case, you will walk away knowing that I was by your side the entire time. Call now to schedule a time that works for you to meet with me for a
free case consultation.