As one of the most common criminal offenses, our law firm has handled hundreds of cases involving motorists accused of driving under the influence of alcohol, illegal drugs or prescription drugs. Attorney Wiseman has helped clients aggressively fight their drinking and driving charges in an effort to obtain the most favorable results possible. Charges of driving while impaired (DWI) have serious penalties. If you are charged with DWI, you lose your driver’s license for 30 days — and that is before you are heard in a court of law.
- A first DWI conviction can land you in a substance abuse treatment program and suspend your license for at least one year.
- A second DWI conviction enlists you in another substance abuse program and suspends your license for another four years (if your prior conviction was within three years). Once you regain your driving privileges, you must have an ignition interlock device installed on your vehicle.
- A third DWI conviction results in similar penalties as the second DWI. If convicted within seven years of your second DWI offense, you must serve a jail term of up to one year.
- A fourth conviction within 10 years for DWI in North Carolina is considered a felony and requires a minimum jail term of one year. On top of that, you stand to have your license revoked, you may have your vehicle confiscated and you will be enrolled in another substance abuse program. If you are permitted to regain use of your driving privileges, an ignition interlock device will be installed and maintained for seven years.
North Carolina, as in other states, considers a driver impaired if his or her blood alcohol concentration is at or above 0.08 percent. For commercial drivers, a BAC of 0.04 percent can elicit a conviction and can detrimentally impact the ability to continue working in that field. Drivers under 21 years of age face zero tolerance punishments, meaning any amount of alcohol in teen drivers’ blood will cause their licenses to be revoked for at least one year.
North Carolina State University provides a detailed assessment of DWI, its consequences, court procedure, tests and penalties, available here. For any additional questions, call the law firm of George W. Wiseman at (704) 795-4567.