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7 Interesting Facts You May Not Know About Florida DUI Cases

DUI stands for driving under the influence. This offense carries heavy consequences in Florida, including fines, jail time, and license revocation, especially in cases of accidents with significant injuries and property damage.

Florida DUI and Drunk Driving Statistics

According to the National Safety Council, auto accidents are frequent and dangerous enough that there is a 1 in 114 chance that a person will sustain serious injuries. When alcohol or drugs are introduced, these chances get higher.

Out of 325 reported DUI cases, 90% of them were reduced from a DUI to a less serious offense, or they had their charges dismissed entirely.

Pinellas county law enforcement leaders have said they are going to crack down on impaired drivers on roadways countywide. Impaired driving kills an average of 10,000 people per year

Here are 7 interesting facts about Florida DUI cases that may surprise you.

• Jail Time for DUI Convictions: Jail time isn’t necessarily mandatory for first-time DUI convictions in the state. However, if there is a second conviction within five years of the first, there is a minimum of ten-day imprisonment time. Third convictions within ten years of the prior convictions carry a minimum jail time of thirty days.

• You Can Experience License Revocation Before Trial: Some may think their license cannot be revoked until there is some kind of trial proving their guilt. However, this is not true. Criminal punishment under Florida law sets safeguards before an individual can be sentenced. Driving is a privilege, not a right. The state can withdraw one’s driving privileges if there are lawful grounds to do so.

• License Revocation After Refusing a Breath Test: If you refuse to submit to a lawful breath, blood, or urine test, your driving privileges can be suspended for one year up to eighteen months. For a blood alcohol level of 0.08% or higher, the license suspension lasts six months for the first offense and longer for each new offense.

• In Actual Physical Control of a Vehicle: This means that the motorist could regulate and use the motor vehicle and was doing so at the time of the offense. This means that even sitting behind the wheel with the keys in the ignition while at a standstill can qualify under the term “in actual physical control.”

• DUIs Come Up on Background Checks: A DUI, like any other criminal conviction, is reported. This means that it ends up on your record, and future employers will be able to see the conviction during a background check.

• DUIs Affect Security Clearances: If you must apply for a security clearance, your personal history is scrutinized. If you have a recent DUI or more than one conviction, you may be what they consider a too high security risk, and you can be denied your security clearance.

• DUIs Can Affect Professional Licenses: If you are applying for a professional license like a dental hygiene license, real estate license, or notary license, you may be denied if you have a recent DUI conviction on your record.

To be considered alcohol-impaired by Florida law, the driver needs to have a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) above the legal limit. According to a survey, 1.7% of adults reported driving after drinking too much nationally, while 2% of drivers in Florida reported the same.

Alcohol-impaired driving death rates occurred more often in those between the ages of 21 and 34 and a BAC of over 0.08%, the legal limit.

These statistics and facts show why driving under the influence is a problem as more and more alcohol-impaired drivers continue to get behind the wheel millions of times per year.

If you were involved in an accident with a drunk driver, you might be entitled to compensation for your injuries and property damage. Consult an experienced local personal injury attorney who can help you file your claim and lead you to the compensation you deserve.

Stephen M. Fernandez developed a strong belief in justice and fairness in public policy while earning his Political Science degree prior to attending law school. Since joining the Florida Bar Association in 2004, Stephen Fernandez has combined his background in public policy, business administration and civil law to serve as a highly effective trial lawyer fighting for Florida's injured, working hard every day to make sure his clients get what they are owed.

7 Interesting Facts You May Not Know About Florida DUI Cases

Goldman Babboni Fernandez
Murphy & Walsh

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