A DWI ticket is a citation that accompanies arrest and/or criminal charges for the crime of operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated. DWI ticket laws are governed by individual states. In all states, you can get a DWI ticket and have charges pressed against you for operating a motor vehicle with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08 percent or greater. Most jurisdictions have zero-tolerance laws that make it unlawful for a person under the legal drinking age to operate a vehicle under the influence of any amount of alcohol.
There are several circumstances under which a DWI ticket can carry heavier penalties. These include: the presence of a child in the vehicle, driving at excessive speeds, a relatively high blood alcohol concentration, any property damage or personal injury involved in the incident, a prior history of DWI offenses, and failure to comply with implied consent law. Implied consent laws state that all persons stopped by a peace officer must comply with chemical testing upon request.
A ticket for a DWI is not like the ticket you might receive for a minor traffic violation. Motor vehicle violations such as minor speeding or failure to obey a traffic sign are usually considered infractions. These typically result in a punitive fine and negative points on your DMV record. A DWI ticket does not imply that you have committed an infraction, but rather that you have committed a crime that is punishable as a misdemeanor or a felony, depending on the specific circumstances of your case.
A DWI ticket means that you have committed a violation that is considered a serious crime in the eyes of the criminal justice system. A DWI conviction can result in a sentence that can include any or all of the following penalties: punitive fines, jail or prison time, probation, community service hours, compulsory drug and alcohol school or rehabilitation programs, the restriction or loss of a driver’s license, and other driving restrictions.
When a person receives a DWI ticket and is convicted of a criminal offense, the conviction stays on their permanent criminal record and on their DMV record for a number of years. This can have many negative implications on an offender’s future. Potential employers, insurance companies, schools and universities, professional licensing agencies, and several others have the right to access criminal and DMV records. When a person receives a DWI ticket and is convicted, their insurance provider may choose to increase their premiums or drop coverage altogether.
The issuance of a DWI ticket and its implications can have a major deleterious affect on the offender’s life. When a person receives a DWI ticket and is charged with a crime, it is to their advantage to seek the advice and legal counsel of an attorney who is trained and experienced in defending DWI offenders.
For more information on DWI ticket cases, you may wish to contact a qualified attorney who can advise you of your legal rights and options in a case.