Be Aware Of Potential DUI Penalties In Tennessee
Each year, thousands of Tennessee residents are charged with drunk driving, or driving under the influence (DUI). Many individuals underestimate the personal and professional damage caused by a conviction and choose to take on the court system alone. If you have been charged with DUI, you can face significant penalties that may impact your freedom, your finances and your future.
At The Law Office of Jeffrey Jones, we represent Memphis area residents facing DUI charges throughout all surrounding counties. If you have been charged with DUI, contact our office now so we can begin your defense strategy.
With more than 35 years of experience, Mr. Jones has the skill and knowledge needed to help you with an aggressive defense against your charges, and the penalties stemming from a conviction.
Laws And Penalties Associated With A First-Offense DUI
In Tennessee, DUI is a misdemeanor, unless the offense causes severe injuries to another party, or the defendant has been previously convicted of DUI three separate times. A fourth offense conviction is a class E felony, while Vehicular Assault, or serious injury caused by a DUI driver, is a class D Felony.
A first-offense DUI carries significant penalties, including:
- Jail time: A first-offense DUI conviction carries a minimum 48 hours in jail, and may result in a probation term of up to 11months, 29 days.
- Fines: Individuals convicted of DUI in Tennessee face fines between $350 and $1,500.
- Loss of license: DUI convictions carry a one-year license revocation.
- Restitution: If the DUI offense caused damage or injury to another party, the court may order the offender to pay restitution for losses.
- Mandatory treatment: Drug and alcohol treatment at the offender’s own expense may be ordered at the judge’s discretion, and may be required before reinstatement of license.
It is important to note that repeat offenses carry increased penalties.
How A Conviction May Impact Your Life
The penalties resulting from a DUI conviction can be severe and expensive. The long-term impacts of a DUI conviction, however, may be the most damaging aspect of your arrest.
Long-term impacts of a DUI conviction include:
- Difficulty obtaining employment
- Increased insurance rates
- Reduced insurance coverage options
- Difficulty going to work, the store or school
- Social stigma
- Expensive monitoring expenses such as the ignition interlock device
Ways To Win A DUI Case
There are many viable defense strategies that may help you avoid a conviction. To help you draft the most effective strategy for your case, Mr. Jones will conduct a thorough investigation of the events leading to your arrest.
Information and factors we will use to apply pressure upon the prosecution may include:
- An improper traffic stop: If the arresting officer did not have probable cause to perform the traffic stop that led to your arrest, your rights may have been violated.
- Incorrectly administered field testing: Police officers are bound by set procedure during the investigation of a DUI. This means that they must conduct field sobriety testing in accordance with proper procedure. If the officer fails to do so, there may be grounds for dismissal of your charges.
- Malfunctioning testing devices: More often than officers may admit, BAC testing devices malfunction. Breath machines may be inaccurate. Blood results may be incorrect.
Any violation of your rights or weakness in the prosecution’s case can be used to fight your charges.
Seek Out An Aggressive DUI Defense Lawyer
If you have been charged with DUI, even if it is your first offense, do not face the criminal system alone. The impacts of a conviction are far-reaching and potentially long-lasting, making it important to take decisive action to protect your future.
At The Law Office of Jeffrey Jones, we have more than 35 years of experience, offering the comprehensive DUI defense you deserve. Call 901-410-5751 or contact us online to discuss your charges and learn more about your DUI defense options.