In Wisconsin it is against the law to drive with a blood alcohol concentration of .08, and for this you can and will be arrested. Note that the charge has nothing to do with your driving ability at all, only a measurement of alcohol in your system. In theory, you could be stopped for a missing tail light and fail a breath test you agreed to take because you knew you weren’t driving poorly. And in a flash, your life could change with an unexpected arrest. You can also be charged without any type of breath test, but merely on the judgment of the arresting officer. Under this method for arrest, you must only be driving while under the influence to a degree of unsafe impairment . The arresting officer could base your arrest on observations of your driving, your results from field sobriety tests, your demeanor, and even your red eyes. Either method will bring an arrest. If this has happened to you, chances are this is the first time you’ve been arrested and it is a frightening and confusing thing. It is urgent that you contact a qualified OWI attorney immediately to represent you. The sooner you act, the better your defense can be.
You will have only 10 days from the day of your arrest to request a hearing to contest the loss of your license. Do not confuse this with your court date, as it is a separate case against you. Your court case will deal specifically with the charges against you for drunk driving. The state has to prove the case and your attorney will argue on such things as whether you were legally stopped, the calibration of the breath testing device, the officer’s training in administering the tests, your driving history and whatever else is pertinent and questionable. If necessary, your attorney may bring in expert witnesses to testify. The results of the case will determine your fines, court costs, any remedial alcohol programs, and jail time if appropriate. A positive outcome will be more likely if you have an attorney who is experienced in Wisconsin OWI laws and the science associated with OWI defense. A conviction from OWI will cause stress in your family and with your job, as well as affect your future. Don’t gamble. Contact a skilled OWI attorney today for a free consultation to get your questions answered.
The penalties listed below are called for by statute, are not complete, and can often be removed or reduced significantly with the assistance of a local Wisconsin DUI attorney.
• Incarceration –no mandatory jail unless an injury to another occurred, then up to 1 year in jail
• Fines – up to $300 plus court costs
• License Suspension – 6 to 9 months plus reinstatement fee
• Education – alcohol assessment at your expense
• Insurance – SR22 high-risk driver insurance required for up to 3 years; necessary before license reinstatement
• Ignition Interlock – mandatory for BAC .15 or higher for 1 year. Cost approximately $1,000 to $1,500
ADDITIONAL COSTS AND CONSEQUENCES
• Bail – set by the court, required for release
• Towing – tow fee $75 to $100 plus daily storage fees
• Insurance – you will be designated as a high risk driver and your insurance will increase significantly. Expect your rates to double or more.
• Record – OWI conviction will remain on driving record permanently if there are two or more within 10 years
• Employment – offender may lose time off work and possibly even their job.
• Immigration and travel – restrictions can apply with certain convictions, including Canada
Additional offenses and considerations will bring significantly higher penalties including up to 1 year in jail and $2,000 in fines. Don’t take a chance with your freedom. It is highly recommended that you contact a qualified DUI attorney right away for a FREE CONSULTATION on your case. Your case CAN be won with the right representation.