Miami Felony DUI Lawyer
Defense From An Experienced Attorney
If you are facing a charge of driving under the influence of alcohol or another controlled substance, you may only be concerned with one question: Is my DUI a felony?
This answer is not so simple since DUI laws vary from one jurisdiction to another. In general, DUI cases are handled in state superior court, and each state has its own laws that govern DUI.
When Is DUI A Felony?
In general, a first-time DUI is a misdemeanor, with a few caveats.
- Even a first-time DUI will usually be raised to a felony if someone was injured as a result of a drunk driver, or if there are grounds for believing that the driver was negligent or reckless in addition to being impaired by alcohol.
- In the case of serious injury, a DUI is often charged as a felony called vehicular assault.
- If someone is killed as a result of the drunk driving episode, the at-fault driver will likely be charged with felony vehicular manslaughter or in some cases vehicular homicide, which carries a higher sentence if the defendant is convicted.
Another way that DUI is raised to a felony instead of a misdemeanor is when a driver has multiple DUI convictions.
DUI is commonly raised to a felony on the fourth DUI conviction. However, in some states, even a second or third DUI arrest may be charged as a felony.
In some cases, blood alcohol level may also impact whether DUI is charged as a misdemeanor or a felony. In most states, the legal blood alcohol limit is 0.08. If the blood alcohol level is considerably above the legal limit, the prosecutor may take this into account as evidence of negligence. Presumably, someone who is severely impaired as a result of a very high alcohol intake should know that driving in such an impaired state is likely to result in serious harm to others.
FAQ And Legal Guides
Florida has some of the strictest DUI laws in the United States — get informed
Penalties For Felony DUI
With all of this information about when DUI becomes a felony, it may be helpful to define exactly what the terms “misdemeanor” and felony mean. In general terms, a misdemeanor is a crime punishable by up to one year in county jail. A felony, on the other hand, is punishable by one year or more in state prison.
How My Firm Has Helped Past Clients
5 / 5 stars
“I was arrested for DUI in Miami earlier this year. Coincidentally, a friend had been arrested for DUI with similar circumstances, a 2nd DUI about ten years apart. In his case the state was seeking a 6 month jail sentence. As you can imagine this scenario of jail time ran through my head as soon as my arrest was made. But then we went to sit down and discuss the case with Jonathan Blecher.
He made both me and my wife feel very at ease. All our questions were answered and we knew right off the bat that he was the man for the job. Throughout the process he kept us informed on what was going on. I only stepped into the courtroom the day I accepted my plea but in my head I never skipped a beat. Never once did I have to follow up or remind him to do something
on my case.
He was in total control, in and out of the courtroom. My case was resolved with no jail time and all fines and penalties reduced beyond what I could have hoped for. Keep in mind that like my friend, the state was seeking jail time for me as well. I cannot thank Jonathan enough for his professionalism and more important compassion in a very difficult situation.”
Call Jonathan B. Blecher, P.A., at 786-785-2035 for defense that you can trust! I have defended thousands of DUI and suspended license cases and will do everything I can to assist you as well.