Florida has a fairly good record when it comes to preventing DUI. Strict regulations and continued awareness are some of the factors that have created such a situation. What happens if you receive a DUI in Florida? How does a DUI citation affect subsequent DUI offenses? DUI accident lawyer Jarrett Blakeley explains below.
• Legal Limit:
The legal limit for BAC, or Blood Alcohol Concentration, in Florida and other states is 0.08 percent. If your BAC level exceeds this limit, you will be charged with DUI, though the first offense is considered a misdemeanor. When it comes to receiving a DUI, a lot depends on what are referred to as aggravating factors, i.e. driving with a child in the car, the driver being cited in a school zone, a driver threatening or causing serious physical harm to another person, excessive speeding, reckless driving, etc. You can also be charged with aggravated DUI if your BAC level is found to be abnormally high, i.e. around two to three times higher than the permissible limit. In an instance of aggravated DUI, you will be charged with a felony and liable for severe penalties.
• Your DUI Conviction Could Negatively Affect Your Ability to Drive in Other States:
Because of the Interstate Compact, a DUI conviction you receive in Florida will affect your ability to drive in other states as well. So if your license is suspended in Florida, you will also lose the privilege to drive in other states. And if you have a previous conviction in another state, a second DUI will be considered a second offense on the matter of license suspension.
• The Penalty for DUI in Florida:
In Florida, the average penalty for a first-time DUI could be anywhere between $250 and $500 (depending on the circumstances related to the DUI). For subsequent offenses, fines can be even higher—anywhere from $1,000 to $2,000. You could face up to nine months in jail, and even lose your license for up to five years, if there is a small window of time between your first and second offense. You will also be considered a repeat offender after your second DUI conviction.
Drunk driving is a serious issue in the United States, one which claims thousands of lives every year. Given how much loss is routinely suffered by innocent victims, these strict regulations are certainly justified. If you or a loved one was injured in an accident, contact a UI accident lawyer for a free consultation.