Posted on Aug 23rd 2023
Operating with a thorough understanding of Palm Beach County DUI laws is crucial if you or a loved one has been arrested for driving under the influence. Learn about critical laws and possible penalties for DUIs in Palm Beach County.
Facing a DUI charge means that you are being accused of driving or otherwise physically controlling a vehicle while one of the following is also true:
In Palm Beach County, the Implied Consent Law requires all drivers arrested for a DUI to consent to a test designed to determine the level of alcohol or drugs in their system. Possible tests include blood, urine, or breath tests.
It is crucial to understand that refusing these tests is within your legal rights. However, if you choose to refuse the test, you will automatically lose your driver’s license for one year.
If you consent to blood, urine, or breath tests, there are still steps you must take in order to protect your driver’s license.
In Palm Beach County, you must request a court hearing within ten days of your arrest. Failing to do so will result in license suspension for up to 18 months. Since this process is separate from the criminal case, many drivers, unfortunately, miss this deadline. Reaching out to a trusted attorney like Peterford Law immediately following an arrest can help prevent missed deadlines and preserve your rights.
Palm Beach County’s Zero Tolerance Law means there are different processes and penalties for those who are younger than 21. While most drivers face DUI charges when their BAC measures 0.08% or higher, drivers under the age of 21 can be charged when their BAC is 0.02% or higher. This charge will automatically cause a six-month suspension of the individual’s driver’s license but is not considered a criminal offense. Drivers under 21 with a BAC of 0.05% or higher will be required to attend a substance abuse program.
Most of the time, a DUI is considered a misdemeanor in Palm Beach County. The penalties of these charges can vary depending on factors such as how many DUIs are already on your record and how high your BAC was upon arrest. DUI penalties in Palm Beach County generally include:
In situations involving minors in the vehicle, a BAC of 0.15% or higher, or a third offense within ten years of a prior conviction, you will likely face harsher fines and higher minimum jail time.
In specific instances, a DUI may be considered a felony and carry even higher fines and longer jail sentences. A DUI is a felony if any of the following apply:
On top of the fines, jail time, and license suspension, a DUI conviction can also make it difficult to find employment and housing. In Palm Beach County, DUI convictions remain sealed on your record for 75 years.
The harsh punishment and ongoing ramifications of a DUI conviction in Palm Beach County means finding a reliable defense attorney to help protect your rights is crucial. Peterford Law brings experience on both sides of the courtroom, with over three years as a former prosecutor, handling more than 2,000 cases. Most importantly, Peterford Law is dedicated to his clients, striving to protect the rights of everyone he defends. Don’t let one mistake impact your life for decades to come. Request a consultation today!