Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs (DUI) is a crime in Georgia. This crime has received extensive coverage by the media and is a highly debated topic in our society. In response to pressure from special interest groups, Georgia lawmakers have passed new DUI legislation, which includes mandatory jail time. Legal experts agree, the new DUI laws are tough on drinking drivers.

There are two ways the state can convict someone for DUI. One way is to show that a driver had an 0.08 grams or more blood alcohol concentration within three hours, during or after, driving or otherwise being in control of a vehicle. This is often termed the "per se" provision of Georgia's DUI statutes.

The second way for the state to seek a conviction is to show that a driver is "less safe" to operate a vehicle. Under the "less safe driver" provisions, the state must prove that alcohol and/or other intoxicants caused the driver to be less safe. Although a blood alcohol concentration of 0.05 grams or less safe raises an inference that the driver was not intoxicated, the state can still try and convict you by showing that you were a less safe driver due to alcohol or other intoxicants. A reading of 0.05 grams to 0.0799 will raise no inference of the driver's intoxication, but the judge/jury may consider such fact when deciding innocence or guilt.

An experienced lawyer can often rebut all statutory inferences, as well as attacking the accuracy and efficiency of the Intoxilyzer 5000, the machine normally used to determine a "per se" (.08) violation.

PENALTIES FOR DUI

First Conviction
Up to $1,000.00 fine
10 Days to 1 Year in Jail
DUI School
40 Hours of Community Service
1 Year Probation
1 Year License Suspension
Second Conviction
Up to $1,000.00 Fine
90 Days to 1 Year in Jail
DUI School
30 Days of Community Service
Mandatory Alcohol Evaluation and/or Treatment
Up to 1 Year Probation
3 Year Loss of License
Ignition Interlock Device
Third Conviction
Fine up To $5,000.00
120 Days to a Year in Jail
30 Days Community Service
Alcohol Evaluation and/or Treatment
Up to 1 Year Probation
5 Year License Revocation
Ignition Interlock Device
Fourth Violation
(Habitual Violator)

Fine of $5,000.00
One to Five Years in State Prison

The criminal penalties set out above are severe, but it does not end there. You could also be affected by a DUI conviction in other ways. They include having difficulty renting an automobile, paying high insurance rates, and compromising current or future job prospects. Remember, if you plead guilty to DUI, the Judge has no choice but to sentence you to jail under the new laws 1.

Although the state has multiple avenues for attempting to obtain a conviction, an effective DUI lawyer has his own arsenal for defending the accused. If there is a drunk driving charge against you, it is possible that the state's evidence can be kept out of your trial, or its credibility disputed before the judge or jury. An arresting officer's own incident reports from prior and subsequent arrests can often be used to cast doubt upon his story. It is a lawyer's job to ensure that your side of the story is told in court in the most persuasive manner.

If you are being charged with DUI, you need a lawyer. Your liberty, reputation, and privilege to drive is on the line. George Stein's law practice is dedicated to DUI defense and related offenses. He is a frequent lecturer on the subject of DUI defense and is graduate of the National DUI Defense College conducted at Harvard Law School. George is trained and certified in Field Sobriety Testing and is known for his successful defense of lawyers who have been arrested and charged with DUI. Call for a free office visit today. Ask about our convenient payment plan. Call (404) 681-4000. Remember, sound legal advice can make a difference in your case.

1 Jail time is required if you score a .08 or more on your blood, breath, or urine test.

GEORGE STEIN
DUI Lawyer
(404) 681-4000
24 HR DUI INFOLINE
Toll Free: 888-38-COURT

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