The Miller Law Firm, P.A. Articles Understanding Drunk Driving and DUI Convictions in Florida

Understanding Drunk Driving and DUI Convictions in Florida

By Miller Law Firm  Jul. 29, 2011 4:53p

Nearly one third of all traffic crash deaths involve a driver impaired by drugs or alcohol. In the most recent statistics released by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration "NHTSA," in 2009, nearly 11,000 people were killed in alcohol impaired traffic accidents across the United States. From that figure, Florida had 770 alcohol impaired deaths, surpassed only by California and Texas.

Although drunk driving injuries and fatalities have decreased significantly over the last thirty years, there are still far too many people suffering the sometimes horrific consequences of irresponsible drunk drivers. With so many being needlessly injured or killed by drunk drivers and ruthless criminal and DUI defense attorneys working to lessen the penalties imposed on their clients, you need an experienced Sarasota personal injury attorney by your side to maximize the compensation for your personal injury.

What is the legal limit and what are the penalties for a DUI?

In Florida, having a blood alcohol level of 0.08 or above while operating a moving vehicle is illegal. The penalties for a first DUI offense, which does not involve personal injury to another, can involve the following penalties:

  • Fines - A fine not less than $500 or more than $1,000. If the blood alcohol level (BAC) is higher than 0.15% or there was a minor in the vehicle, the fine would be not less than $1,000 or more than $2,000;
  • Community service - Mandatory 50 hours of community service or additional fine of $10 for each hour of community service required;
  • Probation - Probation and incarceration no more than one year;
  • Imprisonment - Not more than six months. With a blood alcohol level higher than 0.15% or a minor in the vehicle, not more than nine months;
  • Suspension of driver's license - Minimum of 180 days, maximum of one year.

DUI offenses involving serious personal injury to another can result in a felony DUI conviction leading to five years in prison and fines of up to $5,000. If a wrongful death is involved, it can lead to DUI vehicular manslaughter or homicide convictions, with fines of up to $10,000 and prison sentences ranging from 15 to 30 years depending on the circumstances.

Something Can Be Done About It

We all know that getting behind the wheel while intoxicated is wrong. Yet some careless people do it every day without regard for who they may injure or even kill. If you've been injured, or a loved one killed in a drunk driving accident, we highly recommend you seek immediate legal representation. A Bradenton personal injury lawyer, like the attorneys with The Miller Law Firm, P.A. can help. They specialize in drunk driving accidents, personal injury and wrongful death cases and will fight to get you fully compensated for the wrong doing of another.

Contact a Bradenton personal injury attorneyright away if you have been injured in a DUI-related accident.

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