Can you face a DUI charge when the alcohol doesn’t affect you?

By Jonathan Blecher on December 2, 2022

The average adult driver may have an overly simplistic idea of what constitutes a driving under the influence (DUI) offense. Many people think that a driver has to show diminished skill at the wheel or cause harm to other people, such as injuries and property damage, for the state to bring impaired driving charges against them. 

However, obvious chemical impairment is only one of the reasons that the state might charge you with drunk driving. You don’t need to cause a crash or even put other people at direct risk. All you need to do is drink enough to exceed the legal limit. 

Many people face technical DUI charges

In addition to forbidding people from getting behind the wheel when they know they have diminished ability, the state also prohibits driving with an elevated blood alcohol concentration (BAC) even if they can drive safely. The specific limit that applies depends on a driver’s age and license type. Younger drivers and those in control of commercial vehicles are subject to stricter limits. 

In most cases, the BAC limit that applies will be 0.08%. The per se limit makes it an offense to have a BAC over the set limit regardless of the effect someone’s alcohol consumption has on their driving. A driver who seems unaffected but who performs a breath test and is over the legal limit can face charges as easily as someone under the limit but obviously struggling to properly operate a vehicle. 

The defense strategies for a per se offense would be different than a drunk driving charge related to a car crash. Learning more about Florida’s DUI laws can help you determine the best defense given the circumstances.

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