First Offense DUI
Defending DUI Cases Throughout All of Western Washington
In Washington, a first offense DUI may often be reduced to a lesser charge if you have a knowledgeable DUI lawyer who can negotiate a favorable resolution of your case. Similarly, whether you can beat a DUI charge at trial often depends on the skill, talent, and experience of your lawyer.
However, if you plead guilty to DUI, or are convicted of DUI at trial, the penalties the judge imposes depend upon whether you took the test, refused the test, or for some reason, there is no test result.
If your breath or blood test was less than .15, or more than 5 ng of THC, or if you were impaired by any drug in your system, even if there was no test result (but you did not refuse the test), the penalties include:
- Jail – Up to 364 days in jail; a minimum of a day in jail (in lieu of a day in jail, 15 days on electronic home monitoring may be served).
- Fine – Up to a maximum of $5,000.00; a minimum of $940.50 plus probation fees and other assessments.
- License suspension – 90 days. SR22 insurance and $150 fee required to reinstate a license.
- Ignition interlock – Must have a functioning ignition interlock device installed on any vehicle driven, for at least 1 year (cost of installing and/or leasing the device varies). If a passenger under the age of 16 was in the vehicle, an additional 30 days is required.
- Probation – Maximum of 60 months.
- Other – Obtain chemical dependency evaluation from a state-certified agency and follow recommendations; attend a court-approved DUI victim impact panel.
If your breath or blood test was .15 or higher, or the test was refused, the penalties Include:
- Jail – Up to 364 days in jail; at least 2 days in jail (in lieu of 2 days in jail, 30 days on electronic home monitoring may be served).
- Fine – Up to a maximum of $5,000.00; a minimum of $1,195.50 plus probation fees and other assessments.
- License revocation: 1-year revocation for those who took the test; 2 years for those who refused the test. SR22 insurance and a $150 fee required to reinstate. If revoked, the person must also successfully pass driver testing.
- Ignition interlock: Any vehicle driven by the offender must have a functioning ignition interlock device. This restriction is for at least 1 year. If a passenger under the age of 16 was in the vehicle, an additional 30 days ignition interlock restriction is required.
- Probation: Maximum of 60 months.
- Other: Obtain chemical dependency evaluation from a state-certified agency and follow recommendations; attend a court-approved DUI victim impact panel.
Other Possible First Offense DUI Penalties
Aside from the penalties imposed by the court, there are other serious consequences that can result from a first DUI conviction. A DUI conviction can put a person’s career and livelihood in jeopardy. Those who wish to travel to Canada will not be permitted to cross that border, and a DUI conviction could affect a person’s ability to rent a car. A DUI conviction is a serious criminal offense that can never be vacated (expunged) from your criminal record, and will show up on a background check for the rest of your life. A person who has a commercial driver’s license will lose their license for a year for a first offense DUI. Car insurance rates may increase, or the policy may be canceled. Moreover, a DUI conviction carries a stigma that can extend to the person’s family-spouses and children may be affected as well.
Need Help? Speak with Our Washington DUI Attorneys.
If you have been charged with a Washington State DUI first offense, we at Callahan Law, P.S., Inc. can help. We have the scientific knowledge to challenge results of breath, blood, and field sobriety testing. Attorney Linda M. Callahan wrote the legal book on DUI and related traffic offenses in Washington. She has earned the respect of judges, fellow lawyers, and prosecutors across the state. Call now to speak with our DUI lawyers in Tacoma, Seattle, and Shelton, WA.
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To speak to a team member from our firm and tell your story in confidence, call us at (206) 472-1138 or fill out the form below.