Lynnwood DUI Lawyer
Defending Against DUI Charges in Snohomish County
Have you been pulled over and arrested for a DUI (driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs) because a police officer said you failed a field sobriety or chemical test? You may be in danger of facing criminal charges and a conviction for a criminal offense that can result in severe consequences. It is important to involve a Lynnwood DUI attorney who can help you avoid these consequences. We have handled over 20,000 criminal cases and are ready to put our experience to work for you at your hearing and in court.
Arrested for DUI in Washington? Don't face your charges alone. Speak with our attorney about your case today! If you are interested in learning more about the services that our firm provides, please feel free to review the areas of practice we have listed on this page. You can also find more about challenging DUI charges in Washington, such as cross-examining the officer who made your arrest or challenging the breath test, and can get helpful information about field sobriety tests and other issues relevant to these charges.
Washington DUI Laws
Driving under the influence of alcohol is considered to have occurred in the state of Washington when a level of .08 or higher blood alcohol content is reached or if your ability to drive is affected if there is no breath test or the result of the breath test is less than .08. Anyone tested over the .08 limit or thought to be affected can be subject to arrest and suspension of their license.
Once you are pulled over by an officer, you can be given a field sobriety test, and if the officer believes you are intoxicated, he can arrest you and administer a blood or breath test at the jail or police station.
If testing over the legal limit or refusing the breath test, your license is automatically suspended, with the officer providing you a temporary license until you schedule a Department of Licensing (DOL) Hearing. You must then begin the legal process of defending yourself not only to keep your license but to avoid a criminal conviction.
There is a set procedure you must go through when handling your DUI charges in Washington. From Arraignment, Pre Trial Hearing, Motions Hearing, Readiness Hearing to the trial date, each step requires the expertise of a DUI defense lawyer who knows the system and can either negotiate with the prosecutors to get your charges reduced or challenge any evidence against you and get it dismissed.
DUI Penalties in Washington
Being arrested for a DUI is something that can be frightening and life-altering. Because there are so many factors regarding DUI, it is vital that you contact a Lynnwood DUI attorney immediately if you are arrested for driving under the influence.
There are considerable penalties if convicted of DUI, which can include the following:
- Loss or suspension of driving privileges
- Jail time
- Fines, court costs, and other fees
- Restitution for any damages caused
- Community Service
- Alcohol evaluation and/or treatment
- Ignition Interlock Device (up to 10 years)
- Probation for up to five years.
- DUI on driving record for life
For first-time offenders who have an alcohol concentration less than 0.15 and have not refused a breath test, the mandatory minimum penalty is an $866 fine and one day in jail. The Department of Licensing will also suspend the offender's driver's license for at least 90 days.
These penalties increase substantially if an individual refuses to take a breath test, their alcohol concentration is 0.15 or above, or if an accident occurs in connection to the DUI. The maximum penalty for a DUI in Washington is a $5000 fine and one year in jail.
The court is also required to order anyone convicted of a DUI to apply for an ignition interlock driver's license. This requires the individual to only drive vehicles with an ignition interlock device that prevents the vehicle from starting if the driver's alcohol breath concentration level is 0.025 or above.
What Happens to First-Time DUI Offenders?
For a first-time DUI in Washington, you can face several penalties depending on the circumstances surrounding the case.
For a DUI conviction with a BAC under .15%, you can face the following penalties:
- 364 days in jail
- 15 days of electronic home monitoring
- 90-day 24/7 sobriety program
- $550 to $5,200 in fines
- 90-day license suspension
For a DUI conviction with a BAC of .15% or higher, you can face the following penalties:
- 364 days in jail
- 30 days of electronic home monitoring
- 120 days in a 24/7 sobriety program
- $700 to $5,200 in fines
- One-year license suspension
DUI Frequently Asked Questions
- How do the police determine a charge of DUI? - In Washington, an individual is charged with DUI if the blood tests show .08 or higher for an adult or .02 or higher for minors, which means under 21. You can also be charged with DUI if you refuse the breath test or if the officer believes that you are under the influence of alcohol, regardless of whether your breath test is under a .08.
- Can I refuse to take the blood or breath test? - In Washington State, when you obtain your drivers' license, you have already given your consent to take these tests. It is called the Implied Consent Law. You have the right to refuse, but by refusing, your license will be automatically revoked for at least one year. You have a right to request a hearing to challenge this revocation.
- If my license has been suspended, how long before I can get it back? - There are two possible suspensions associated with a DUI case. The Department of Licensing (DOL) will suspend your license administratively after receiving notice of your DUI arrest. The DOL will also suspend your license after receiving notice of a DUI conviction. The suspension can last anywhere from 90 days to several years, depending on your blood alcohol level, refusal of a breath test, and any prior DUI history. During the period of your suspension, you may be able to continue driving with an ignition interlock license. Your attorney can discuss your specific situation with you.
- What are some of the penalties of a DUI? - The charge of driving under the influence is called a "gross misdemeanor." Punishments can range including: home detection, license suspension, up to 364 days in jail, and/or a $5000 fine plus other costs and assessments. DUI charges have mandatory minimum sentences and license suspensions that depend on your prior history and your breath test or refusal. The court can also order you to complete an alcohol evaluation and order you to complete any recommended treatment.
- Does my employer have to know? - Legally, you do not have to inform your employer. However, if the company you work for has a contract requiring this as part of your employment, it could be mandatory. One other factor would be if you drive a company car in your day-to-day business, notification might again need to be given.
Contact Our DUI Defense Attorney in Lynnwood Today
One of our Lynnwood DUI attorneys is a former prosecutor with experience prosecuting many cases involving DUI. He can use his knowledge, skills, and resources to help you get the best outcome possible. Additionally, our firm will also help you with keeping track of requirements laid out by the courts, and we will continue to follow up with you throughout the case.
This is not something every law firm does. Need a lawyer for your DUI case in Lynnwood, WA? If you have been arrested for a DUI in the State of Washington, get excellent representation from an experienced Lynnwood DUI attorney.
Contact The Law Offices of Lance Fryrear today to get started on your defense with our Lywood DUI lawyer.
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