Some people view the offense of driving under the influence (DUI) as no big deal. While it is an offense that is commonly committed by normal people, not necessarily hardened criminals, I assure you the stigma of a DUI conviction can last a lifetime and hinder a DUI offender practically everywhere they turn.
If you are facing DUI charges for the first time, it’s important that you fully understand the consequences of a DUI conviction under Section 316.193 of the Florida Statutes. If you’re thinking, “Oh, it’s just a DUI, no big deal,” I beg to differ. Read on to learn more about the stigma of a DUI and what can be done to prevent it.
Consequences of a First DUI
There is a criminal and non-criminal consequence of a DUI, which I’ll break down for you.
Criminal Consequences of a First DUI
- A fine between $500 and $1,000;
- If the driver’s blood-alcohol level (BAL) was .15 or higher or if there was a minor in the vehicle, a fine between $2,000 and $4,000;
- Up to six months in jail;
- If the driver’s BAL was .15 or higher, up to nine months in jail; and
- Between 180-days and a three-year driver license revocation depending on whether or not the bodily injury was involved.
Non-Criminal Consequences of a First DUI
- The offender’s auto insurance will skyrocket for years;
- The offender may be denied scholarships;
- The offender’s professional licenses can be revoked or denied;
- The offender can be turned away for apartment and house rentals due to the criminal record;
- The offender can be fired for the DUI;
- The DUI can cause the offender to lose job promotions or not get hired at all;
- If the offender is in college, they can be kicked out;
- The offender can be denied entrance to a college;
- The offender can lose athletic scholarships;
- If the offender is traveling to Canada, they may be denied entry for 10 years; and
- If the offender has a family law case, the DUI can impact child custody.
Essentially, the areas a Miami DUI impacts the most are insurance, education, professional licenses, housing, and employment. If you’re a first offender, you may be able to avoid the stigma of a DUI conviction by going through the Back on Track Program. I invite you to contact my firm to explore this program and your legal defenses.