New York Underage DUI Lawyer
Underage driving under the influence (DUI or DWAI – driving while ability impaired or DWI – driving while intoxicated as it is technically referred in New York) should not be taken lightly as penalties can be significant.
If you have been arrested for underage DUI, contact a New York underage DUI lawyer to review your situation. A skilled drunk driving attorney can help determine what legal defenses may apply to you, and help you make the best decisions for your future.New York’s Zero Tolerance Law
New York has a zero-tolerance law which applies to underage drinking and driving. Simply stated, an underage driver pulled over with even a small amount of alcohol in their system can be charged – regardless of whether their driving was impaired. Contacting a New York underage DUI lawyer can be critical
In New York, the minimum blood alcohol content (BAC) level for an underage zero tolerance violation (sometimes called a per se DWAI) is .02, so even one drink can put someone over the limit. Law enforcement officers do not need to put underage offenders through a field sobriety test or prove impaired driving.
Police often suspect underage DUI when pulling drivers over at random checkpoints or for other reasons such as speeding or having a broken tail light. When a police officer requires someone who is underage to submit to a BAC test and their reading is between .02 and .07, they can be charged with violation of New York’s zero tolerance law.
First offenses may not technically result in criminal charges. In fact, cases are generally handled by New York’s Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) instead of the courts. A DMV commissioner will likely hear the case and may suspend their license for six months and force them to pay a $125 fine.
It is possible to apply for a waiver of the suspension for commuting to work and school (known as a conditional license) if the person charged is granted admission to New York’s Impaired Driver education and awareness program. A second zero tolerance offense will result in a license suspension of one year or until the driver is 21 – whichever is longer. Second offenders are not eligible for conditional licenses or the Impaired Driver Program.What are Common Underage and Aggravated Offenses?
Underage drivers can face regular DWI charges if they have a BAC level of .08 or more or with Aggravated DWI charges if they have a BAC level of .18 or more. New York underage DUI lawyers know that underage drivers can also be charged with DWAI/Drugs (Driving While Ability Impaired by Drugs) if they are pulled over for impaired driving and/or they fail a field sobriety test and test positive for either illegal drugs (including marijuana) or any controlled substance (whether or not they were legally prescribed).
Penalties for these charges include jail time and hefty fines. Second offenses are often treated as class E felonies and there are enhanced penalties for underage drivers charged with these offenses. However, it is important to keep in mind that diversion to the Impaired Driver Program (in lieu of jail time) may be possible on a first offense.Talk to a New York Underage DUI Attorney
The bottom line is that any type of DUI / DWAI / DWI can have significant consequences and affect your life for a long time to come. Do not risk your future; turn to an experienced New York underage DUI lawyer for help.
Call our New York Underage DWI and DUI attorneys at (212) 312-7129 or contact us online today.