In New York, motorists must adhere to the rules of the road to keep everyone safe. Unfortunately, some drivers make the mistake of ignoring traffic laws and getting behind the wheel while intoxicated. Driving under the influence (DUI) is a severe criminal offense with harsh consequences, such as hefty fines, license suspension, installation and use of an ignition interlock device, participation in an alcohol education program, and even possible jail time. The severity of the penalties you may face will depend on several factors, including the number of prior convictions. If you’re facing DUI charges, contact a determined Queens DUI Lawyer who can help you explore all possible defenses to protect you from an uncertain future. Please continue reading to learn how a previous DUI conviction can influence the outcome of your current case in New York.
It is imperative to understand that depending on whether there are any aggravating factors such as prior convictions, your blood alcohol concentration (BAC), or whether it is a first offense, among other factors, your DUI charges can range from a misdemeanor to a felony. A prior conviction will impact your current case primarily because a first DUI offense is usually classified as a misdemeanor. However, it will escalate to a felony charge upon a second, third, or subsequent conviction. A DUI can be charged as a class D felony, resulting in the permanent revocation of your driving privileges and a criminal record that will follow you for the rest of your life, hindering your reputation and ability to find good employment opportunities.
If you commit a subsequent offense within ten years, you will face even harsher penalties as the state aims to discourage repeat offenses. Generally, first-time offenders will face a six-month license suspension. In contrast, second-time offenders will have their driver’s license revoked for at least a year, and third-time offenders could permanently lose their driving privileges.
In addition to facing lengthy license suspension, you will be subject to more substantial fines. A first-time offender will face fines of up to $1,000; second and third-time offenders could face penalties of up to $10,000. First-time offenders will face a jail term of up to one year, second-time offenders will face a jail term of up to four years, and third-time offenders will face a jail term of up to seven years. As you can see, the recency and number of prior convictions will significantly impact the severity of your potential penalties.
If you’re facing DUI charges, you need an experienced Queens DUI lawyer from Vasiliou Law to fight vigorously to protect your rights. Don’t face these charges alone. Allow our firm to represent your interests today.