What Really Happens After Dwi Arrest?

If you have been caught under the offence of driving while intoxicated (dwi) or driving under the influence of alcohol (dui) and you are over twenty-one years of age, you are very much likely to be sent to jail. After the dwi arrest, you will be booked (all your details will be recorded, including the nature of offence committed and your involvement in it. But, don’t panic. The laws have provided you certain legal rights in such cases, which you can use to keep things simple. Following is a brief rundown on how to go about it.

Know Your Rights

Ignorance can pay heavily. So, make sure you are well aware of your rights and the legal options. For example, it is important for you to keep in mind that you have the right to make a phone call, maybe to a relative or a lawyer. Even if you do not have a cell phone, you can request the police officer or the law enforcing authority to allow you to use their phone. They cannot say “no” to you. You can also ask them if you have an option to get released by making a certain amount of bail payment.

Minimizing the Sentence

The dwi arrest often follows with a court hearing. If the court finds you guilty, a sentence will be issued that may include just a certain amount of fine or a jail term (with or without fine). The level of sentence depends on an array of factors, such as whether it is your first, second, or third offence. The BAC level also plays a crucial role in this regard. You can try to convince the court about your good behavior and request for a lesser sentence. Having an expert lawyer on your side may also prove to be very helpful in reducing the level of sentence.

Getting Back Your Driving Privileges

The best way to get your drinking privileges back within a short period of time is by taking a drinking driving program (DDP) from a state-approved institution. The court will provide you a list of such institutions and the programs offered by them. The length of the course depends on whether it is your first, second, or third offence. It can be just 3-9 months if the dwi arrest has occurred for a first offence. However, you are required to take at least an 18-month program if you have been arrested for second or third offence. After successful completion of the course, you will be issued a certificate. When you show up this certificate to DMV (Department of Motor Vehicles), you will get your driving privileges returned.

Notify the Court

Do not forget to notify the court about your enrollment in such a program with twenty-one days of conviction. This will make the process much easier; as soon as you successfully complete the course, the DMV will be notified automatically about the same and they will return your driving privileges.

It is however important to note that getting your driving privileges back does not mean that the dwi arrest record has been eliminated. You are still on the record and you have to be very careful while you drive. Another such offence means you are in very serious trouble.