Baltimore Driving While Impaired Attorney
Maryland places a number of specific charges in the category of impaired driving offenses: driving under the influence of alcohol and driving while impaired with alcohol, drugs, and/or controlled dangerous substances. Please contact a reputable Baltimore driving while an impaired lawyer for help if you’re facing any of these serious charges. You need to act quickly to obtain experienced legal counsel. Call today to discuss your case with a Baltimore DUI Lawyer.
What You Need to Know About Driving While Impaired (DWI)
While an experienced Baltimore driving while an impaired lawyer who is versed in drunk-driving laws will go over your case and details of the charge it’s a good idea to know what you’re up against beforehand. DWI is broken down into three categories under the state’s drunk-driving laws. It is unlawful to drive:
- While impaired with alcohol
- While impaired by drugs or a combination of drugs and alcohol
- While impaired by controlled dangerous substances
Furthermore, there are other serious consequences if you’re caught with a minor in your car. That complicates matters further and the fines and jail time vary if it’s your first offense or if you have prior convictions. Breath alcohol levels are also taken into account to determine if you are under the influence of or impaired by that substance. There are particular and distinct differences between what constitutes drugs and what constitutes controlled dangerous substances. A driving while an impaired lawyer in Baltimore can provide advice to defend your case, avoid a conviction, or help minimize the penalties.
Difference Between DWI and DUI
Driving while impaired (DWI) is a lesser offense than DUI. Driving under the influence means an individual’s ability to operate a vehicle was significantly impaired; It’s a high degree of impairment. DWI just requires some degree of impairment.
Fines and Mandatory Penalties for DWI
What can you expect if you are convicted of being impaired while driving? A misdemeanor charge carries a penalty of up to two months in jail, a fine of up to $500, or both. If this is your second offense, you could be sentenced to up to one year in jail, a fine of up to $500, or both. If a minor was riding in the car (pdf) during your first offense, the jail time and fine are more severe. Your Baltimore driving while the impaired lawyer will have the knowledge and experience to work on your behalf to try to reduce the penalties that you could face.
Prior convictions of a drunk-driving offense with a minor involved put you in danger of serving a sentence of one year and/or up to $2,000 in fines. All these fines and penalties involve alcohol or drugs and alcohol – not controlled dangerous substances. For your first drunk driving offense with a controlled dangerous substance, you could receive a fine of up to $1,000 or up to one year in jail. With a minor involved, the jail time increases to two years and the fine increases to $2,000. Prior convictions also add more jail time and higher fines.
Building a Defense
The first thing that a Baltimore DWI lawyer will do is interview the client and ask exactly what happened. Then it will be important to get any kind of pertinent medical or personal information to help build the defense and demand discovery from the state attorney’s office which includes the police reports, certification/calibration records for the breathalyzer machine, officer’s training, and other types of things.
An attorney will then make sure that all of those documents are in order or, if they’re not in order, use that as a reason to have the case was thrown out or evidence suppressed. And finally, a lawyer will communicate with the prosecutor’s office and help an individual try the case.
Importance of Hiring a Baltimore DWI Lawyer
There are two things that are important in hiring an attorney in any kind of criminal case. One is familiarity with the jurisdiction. You want an attorney who knows the prosecutors and who knows the judges hearing an individual case. Personalities matter a lot in the legal system. Certain arguments will be considered more seriously by some judges than others. Trying to get the case in front of the right judge or knowing when you’re in front of the wrong judge is going to be extraordinarily important. Additionally, having a relationship with the prosecutor’s office can be extremely important. Having a prosecutor’s office that knows your attorney and knows that they are willing to litigate cases is going to significantly improve the kind of offers that you get.
The other thing that’s very important in any kind of criminal case is hiring an attorney who is familiar with that area of law. Having a DWI lawyer in Baltimore who only ever handles divorces handle your criminal case is not in your best interest. You really want somebody who is experienced and knowledgeable of the area of law that your case is in and somebody who is experienced and knowledgeable about the jurisdiction where the case is going to be heard.