Howard County Driving While Impaired Lawyer
Although they are less severe than DUI charges, DWI charges in Maryland are still extremely serious and should be handled with care and professionalism. If you have been arrested, a Howard County DUI lawyer will fight to help you retain your driving privileges and avoid the penalties that accompany a conviction.
About Driving While Impaired Charges
Most people know that if a person is found to be driving with a blood alcohol concentration of 0.08 or greater, he or she can be charged with DUI, or driving under the influence of alcohol. What fewer people realize is that you can still be charged with an alcohol related driving offense with a BAC below the legal limit for DUI. Although DWI, or driving while impaired, is a lesser offense, it can still cause significant problems for a driver. There are basic differences between the two charges, which you can speak about with your Howard County driving while impaired lawyer.
If you consented to a blood alcohol test, and the result indicates a high enough BAC to be charged with DWI, you may feel that you have no option but to plead guilty. Do not enter any plea until you have spoken with a DWI lawyer in Howard County.
How an Attorney Can Defend You
A MD DWI defense attorney knows that a breath test alone may not be enough to convict a person of driving while impaired, and your lawyer will work diligently to uncover the best defense strategy for your Driving While Impaired case.
An illegal traffic stop, faulty administration of field sobriety tests, inadequately maintained or improperly calibrated breathalyzer machines, and insufficient evidence of impairment are all tools an experienced DWI attorney may be able to use in your defense.
What is ‘Driving While Impaired’ in Maryland?
When it comes to alcohol-impaired driving, there are two main terms that come to mind: DUI (driving under the influence) and DWI (driving while impaired).
These two terms have different meanings in different states. In some states, DWI is the greater offense. In other states, there is no distinction between DWI and DUI.
Maryland alcohol-related driving laws, outlined in Maryland Code § 21-902, prohibit DUI, DUI per se, and DWI. While DUI and DUI per se are the more serious charges, DWI is a lesser charge, carrying less stringent penalties.
In general, DUI and DUI per se refer to operating a motor vehicle with a BAC at or above 0.08 percent. DUI per se means that a driver can be charged with a BAC at that level whether or not he or she shows signs of impairment.
Section 21-902(b) prohibits driving while impaired by alcohol. If an officer pulls over a vehicle and observes signs of impairment—difficulty maintaining a lane, failure to obey traffic signals, etc.—he or she may arrest the driver on suspicion of DUI.
If the driver takes a blood alcohol test that determines the BAC to be between 0.07 and 0.08, the driver can then be charged with DWI.
DWI Penalties in Maryland
While the maximum penalties of DWI are far lower than those associated with a DUI conviction, they can still be problematic.
A first offense of DWI is punishable by a maximum of 60 days in jail and a fine of $500. Other penalties include MVA restrictions via suspension, restriction or ignition interlock. A DWI conviction will add 8 points against the driver’s license, and the license will be suspended.
However, an arrest alone does not mean that you will be convicted of DWI and lose your license. Consult a driving while impaired attorney in Howard County, Maryland to discuss your options.
Howard County DWI Defense
When facing serious alcohol-related driving charges, it’s easy to get discouraged and to lose hope. However, with the help of an experienced legal advocate, you can make informed decisions that can help to mitigate the damage associated with your charges. Call a Howard County driving while impaired attorney with our firm today to learn more about your defense options.
Why Do Clients Choose You To Represent Them?
I have a substantial amount of experience practicing in Howard County, in every courtroom and in front of each of the judges there. I have a good rapport with the Office of the State’s Attorney and they freely exchange information with me on a regular basis, either via phone or by actual discovery when requested.
The opportunity to have someone who understands Howard County and practices there gives a little bit of ease to clients and can lower the stress. You want to have an attorney who is very sympathetic towards what you are going through and who is very accessible when you have a question or just need to make good contact. So I offer my clients that simple opportunity and that is to call me when they need me. I tell them to reach out when they have a question or just call for an update or to talk when they are stressed. I am someone who is incredibly accessible and I do enjoy speaking with my clients.