Being arrested for a DUI can be an intimidating and often anxiety-inducing experience, especially if you are a first-time offender. You are likely overwhelmed and do not know what to do next.
Seeking help from an experienced DUI attorney may be a valuable next step. A Manhattan first-time DUI charge lawyer could help you navigate the entire legal process while tenaciously fighting for your rights in court.
Penalties for First-Time DUI Offenders
When a person is convicted for a first offense DUI in Manhattan, there are statutory minimums, which include:
- A $750 fine court cost
- A $100 probation fee
- A drug and alcohol evaluation
- Alcohol and drug information school
- At least two days served in jail
- The loss of license for up to one year
The above are all minimum requirements under Kansas state law and cannot be altered by a judge or jury when sentencing a guilty verdict. Thus, reaching out to a first-time DUI charge attorney for defense could have a significant impact on one’s final result.
Driver’s License Implications
If an individual is convicted for a first-time DUI with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) between 0.08 and a 0.15 percent, they will lose their license for 30 days and then are required to have an interlock for the following six months. If their BAC was above 0.15 percent, their license will be suspended for one year, and then restricted for one year with an interlock device.
If a person refuses to take a BAC test, their license will be suspended for one year, and then interlocked for up to two years after that.
Challenging a License Suspension
Whenever someone is charged with DUI, they have 14 days from the time a DUI was received to request a hearing in writing. If a hearing is not requested within the established time limit, then the state will automatically suspend the person’s license, and they will not be able to challenge it. An organized first-time DUI charge lawyer in Manhattan could work to ensure that no deadlines are missed during the legal process.
Diversion Programs Available in Manhattan
First-time DUI offenders are often given the option to attend a diversion program. If a defendant is offered a diversion contract, they are agreeing to perform certain duties such as:
- Up to 100 hours of community service
- Paying a fine of up to $1,500
- Drug and alcohol evaluation
- Following recommendations
- Random drug and alcohol testing
The diversion program usually lasts for at least one year. Once a defendant completes all the agreed-upon terms, then the diversion is complete and their case is dismissed. However, when a DUI is dismissed from court, it does not mean it is completely erased. If the person was ever charged with another DUI, it would count as a second offense.
How Can a First-Time DUI Charge Lawyer Help My Case?
An experienced legal professional could thoroughly investigate a DUI case by reviewing all the available police reports and video footage to determine whether or not the arresting officers acted within the standards that are set by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
Law enforcement must have a valid reason—or reasonable suspicion—to stop a driver, as well as probable cause to make the arrest. A Manhattan first-time DUI offense attorney could examine whether an officer had the defendant perform any tests to provide reason for arrest, such as the walk and turn, the one-leg stand, the alphabet or counting test, etc. If the police made an arrest without thoroughly testing the person’s abilities, the case could be thrown out. Additionally, a lawyer could search a defendant’s medical history to see if they had any injuries that might have affect their performance on any of the DUI tests.
Reach Out to a Skilled Manhattan First-Time DUI Charge Attorney
While being charged with a DUI can be difficult, and sometimes embarrassing, at Addair Law we believe that one mistake should not define your entire future. Allow our committed team of attorneys to strategize and establish a strong defense for your case. A Manhattan first-time DUI charge lawyer could be the difference between your charges being dropped or being required to serve jail time. Call now to get started on your case.