Were you arrested or charged with driving under the influence (DUI)? Depending on the circumstances, a DUI conviction could cost you money, your driver’s license, your job, and more. But it doesn’t have to.
The Plainville, CT, lawyers at Jainchill & Beckert, LLC, have extensive experience in DUI defense. Contact our DUI criminal defense attorneys for a confidential consultation on how we can defend you.
What Is Considered a DUI in Connecticut?
In Connecticut, a person is considered legally intoxicated if they have a blood alcohol content of 0.08 percent or higher. Commercial drivers and drivers under 21 are subject to lower BAC limits. If you are arrested on suspicion of DUI, you could be charged in Connecticut if your BAC meets such a limit or is higher.
What Should I Do If Stopped for Drunk Driving?
If you are stopped on suspicion of DUI in Plainville, CT, you should immediately take the following steps to protect yourself:
- Pull over to a safe location on the road as quickly but as safely as possible
- Treat the officer with courtesy and respect, including turning your vehicle’s interior lights on.
- Know where your license and registration are. You should avoid rummaging around your vehicle as the officer approaches; otherwise, the officer may become suspicious that you are attempting to hide contraband or retrieve a weapon.
- Remember that you have the right to remain silent. You should politely decline to answer if the officer asks if you have been drinking or using drugs. You can also request to speak to a DUI criminal defense attorney before deciding to answer any questions.
About DUI Chemical Testing
After a driver is arrested for DUI, police will typically conduct one of two types of chemical testing to obtain proof of the driver’s intoxication:
If you are pulled over on suspicion of alcohol intoxication, police will typically ask you to provide a breath sample to a breathalyzer.
If police suspect you are under the influence of illicit or prescription drugs, they might conduct a blood test. You may consent to a blood draw, or the court may issue a warrant for a blood draw to be performed.
Refusing a Breath or Blood Test
Under Connecticut’s implied consent law, drivers may not refuse a properly authorized breath or blood test. If you refuse a test, you may face serious consequences, even if you are ultimately not convicted of DUI.
Refusing a chemical test does not help your case
You may think that by refusing a chemical test, the prosecution cannot prove your blood alcohol content or drug intoxication. However, prosecutors might rely on other evidence to demonstrate that you could not safely operate a motor vehicle due to intoxication. For example, the prosecution may include testimony from the arresting officer concerning your behavior and demeanor at the time of your alleged DUI.
What happens if you refused the test?
If you refuse a test, your driver’s license will be revoked for six months upon first offense. It will be automatically suspended for a year upon a second offense, and for three years on a third.
About Alcohol Absorption
The rate at which alcohol is absorbed by the body depends on multiple factors, including:
- How recently a person has eaten
- Alcohol concentration of a drink
- What food or beverages are consumed alongside alcohol
- Gender and body build
- Any drugs taken alongside alcohol consumption
Do You Lose Your License for Your First DUI in CT?
Connecticut laws state that you will be subject to a 45-day driver’s license suspension upon a first conviction for DUI. However, if you received a suspension for refusing a chemical test, you will not need to serve a second suspension period. In addition, you will need to have an ignition interlock device on your vehicle for one year as a condition for getting your license restored.
Getting Your License Reinstated
If your license has been suspended for DUI or refusal of a chemical test, it will not automatically be reinstated at the end of the suspension period. Instead, you must file an application for reinstatement.
For any alcohol-related suspension, you will be required to install an ignition interlock device on your vehicle for 1-3 years, depending on the nature of your offense. You will also need to pay a $125 fee with your reinstatement application.
Why You Need a Plainville DUI Lawyer on Your Side
If you are facing charges of drunk or drugged driving, you need an experienced Plainville DUI defense attorney from Jainchill & Beckert, LLC on your side. Our reputable lawyers will:
- Explain your charges and your legal rights to you, including what to expect in the criminal justice system and the possible outcomes of your charges.
- Investigate your case to identify potential defenses to the prosecution’s case. This can possibly lead to your DUI charges being reduced or dismissed, and you could also be acquitted at a DUI trial.
- Protect your rights during the investigation into your charges, ensure fair treatment, and receive a fair trial.
- Advise you regarding how to please. We also will leverage our relationship with prosecutors and judges to negotiate a more favorable outcome to your charges if you decide to plead guilty.
- Mitigate the consequences of a conviction, such as helping you get a restricted license so that you can continue to drive to work or school.
How Long Does a DUI Stay on Your Record in Connecticut?
A DUI conviction will stay on your Connecticut driving record for 10 years. In addition, the demerit points you receive for a conviction will stay on your record for two years; if you accumulate 10 points within a two-year period, you could face license suspension.
Does a DUI Show Up on a Background Check in Connecticut?
If you apply for employment, housing, or admission to an educational program, your DUI conviction will likely show up on a background check. You won’t automatically be disqualified, but you should be honest about your conviction to avoid disqualification.
Can You Get a DUI Expunged in Plainville?
In Connecticut, a DUI conviction can be expunged from a criminal record through the pardon process. Pardons come in two forms:
- Absolute pardon, which removes a conviction from your record. You must wait at least three years from a misdemeanor DUI conviction and five years from a felony conviction before applying. You cannot have any pending charges in any jurisdiction; be on probation or parole; or have any charges against you that were dropped within the previous 13 months.
- Provisional pardon, also called a certificate of employability. This does not remove a DUI conviction from your criminal record. Instead, it provides an official state proclamation that you should not be denied employment or professional licensure due to your conviction.
Connecticut DUI Minimum Penalties
Minimum penalties that may be imposed for a DUI conviction include:
- First DUI – At least two days in jail or 100 hours of community service under DUI probation, plus a possible fine of at least $500. This DUI is a misdemeanor.
- Second DUI – At least 120 consecutive days in jail, plus a possible fine of at least $1,000. Also, if you are convicted of a second DUI in Connecticut within 10 years of a previous violation, your crime is now a felony.
- Third DUI and subsequent DUI convictions – At least one year in prison, plus a possible fine of at least $2,000.
These penalties only reflect a small part of what the cost of a DUI is. You also must factor in how much a Connecticut DUI lawyer will cost, as well as what a possible conviction does or will do for your life in the short and long terms.
Potential Defenses and Strategies for a Better Outcome in a DUI Case
Possible defenses that you may be able to raise in your DUI case include:
- Police lacked reasonable suspicion
- Police lacked probable cause
- The breathalyzer was not properly calibrated, or the officer improperly conducted testing
- A urine sample or blood draw was unlawfully taken
- Errors in blood or urine testing rendered the results unreliable
Talk to an Experienced Plainville DUI Defense Lawyer Now
If you were arrested and charged with a DUI in Plainville, contact Jainchill & Beckert, LLC right away. Our team has helped others in your situation get their DUI charges reduced or dropped. We can be reached by phone or online 24/7. Contact us now and we’ll be ready to put our experience to work for you.