New York “Per Se” DWI Lawyer
Most people have heard of DUI (driving under the influence) and DWI (driving while intoxicated) charges. Every state has similar charges about impaired driving. In New York, there are multiple charges related to driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Every one of those charges is based on how impaired the driver is, and impairment is determined based on the driver’s blood alcohol content (“BAC”) level. If a driver’s BAC level reaches a certain limit, they are considered intoxicated, or legally “drunk.” The legal limit of intoxication in New York is 0.08%. Thus, any driver with a BAC of 0.08% or more is intoxicated and will be charged with a DWI.
What is Per Se DWI?
The most basic alcohol-related driving charge in every state, including New York, is a DWI. Commonly known as “drunk driving,” intoxicated driving is actually a legal term used to define a criminal charge. This basic DWI charge is often referred to as a “per se” DWI. This means that a driver is operating a motor vehicle with a BAC level of at least 0.08%. Legally drunk drivers can be criminally charged with a DWI. There are lesser charges for drivers that are not intoxicated but are still impaired, or under the influence of alcohol. A legally impaired driver has a BAC level between 0.05% and 0.07%, and can be charged with Driving While Ability Impaired (DWAI).
When an intoxicated driver is pulled over, the police officer can use certain tests to determine what the driver’s BAC is. The purpose of these tests is to determine whether the driver is impaired or intoxicated. There are several tests that can be administered by the officer, including chemical tests that measure the driver’s BAC. The most common of these chemical tests is the breath test, typically called the breathalyzer. Other chemical tests use the driver’s urine or blood to test the BAC level. Other commonly used sobriety tests include balance and coordination tests. However, these tests do not measure BAC levels. If the driver is found to be intoxicated, the officer can arrest them and charge them with a DWI.
What Are the Penalties for a DWI?
A per se DWI is a misdemeanor criminal charge. The penalties for a DWI can depend on whether the driver has any prior DWI convictions. For first time offenders, a conviction on a per se DWI charge can lead to any of the following:
- Up to 1 year in jail;
- A maximum fine of $1,000 and a surcharge of $400;
- A 6-month license revocation; and
- Required installation/maintenance of ignition interlock device for up to 1 year.
If you or someone you know has been charged with a DWI or similar charge, call the DWI lawyers at Nave DWI Defense Attorneys. A DWI charge is a serious criminal charge that can lead to severe consequences, including fines and jail time. Because of the potential consequences, you need to hire experienced New York DWI attorneys who understand the law. Our team has the experience and knowledge to help you. We have successfully represented countless New York drivers, and we can help you too. Contact us today for a free case evaluation.
DISCLAIMER: The exclusive purpose of this article is educational and it is not intended as either legal advice or a general solution to any specific legal problem. Corporate offices for Nave DWI Defense Attorneys are located at 269 W. Jefferson St.; Syracuse, New York 13202; Telephone No.: (315) 473-0899. Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome. Attorney Advertising.