Frequently Asked Questions for a first DUI
It’s very confusing when you get pulled over for your first DUI offense. There are so many unknowns, so many questions: "Am I going to go to jail?" "Am I going to lose my license?" "Do I need an attorney?" It can be an overwhelming time, to say the least.
- Question: What will happen the first time I go to court:
Answer: A first DUI offense in Colorado results in other criminal (fines and possibly jail time) and administrative penalties (license suspension). Aside from the DUI charges which involve driver’s fond with a Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) above .08, Colorado also includes penalties for DWAI (Driving While Ability Impaired) violations. DWAI refers to driving a vehicle when a person has consumed alcohol or drugs, or a combination so that the driver is less able to exercise clear judgement-for example, a driver with a BAC above .05 or less than .08.
- Question: What if I am found Guilty for a DUI
Answer: The penalties for a DUI in Colorado are pretty strict. If you end up with a conviction, at the bare minimum, first time offenders could be facing a maximum of 1 year in jail, a maximum of a $1000.00 fine and license suspension of up to 9 months. You may be allowed to receive an early reinstatement with an ignition interlock system. Reinstating earl for a DUI-Type revocation with a mandatory ignition interlock restricted license. An Affidavit of Enrollment in Level II Education and Therapy (DR2643) driver’s license reinstatement form required for reinstatement for all persistent drunk drivers. During this period of license suspension you may be ordered to enroll in Level I or level II Education and Level II Therapy classes.
- Question: What happens if I refuse to submit to a breathalyzer or refuse to give a blood sample to law enforcement at the time of the arrest?
Answer: If you refuse the test the state can use your refusal as evidence against you in court. This is explained in Colorado Revised Statute 42-4-1301. In most situations if you refuse to take a mandatory blood, breath or urine test you cannot be forced to do so. However, Expressed Consent states, the Colorado Law requires you to take a breath, or blood test if you are arrested for a DUI. Colorado’s “expressed consent” law says that if you are lawfully arrested by an office who has probable cause to believe that you have been driving under the influence, then you consent to taking a chemical test of your blood or breathe for the purpose of determining your blood alcohol content (BAC). If the officer believes you may be under the influence of drugs then you also consent to a urine test. Don’t forget, you agreed to this when you got accepted your driver’s license.
- Question: Do I need an attorney for my first DUI arrest:
Answer: You probably will not need an attorney for your first DUI offense, you could probably represent yourself if you know that you will most likely be convicted and you just want to plead guilty. It’s really up you. Most people get an attorney because they believe there is some hope that they can beat the case. It will be helpful to know that if your BAC was at or over 0.08, you will most likely be convicted. If your BAC was 0.05to 0.08 you will most likely get a DWAI conviction. It’s your decision however you should plan on getting one or the other. An attorney could definitely be helpful in brokering a good deal with the DA however, it’s totally on you how you want to represent yourself
- Why do I have to take the Level I or Level II Classes and Therapy:
Answer: Colorado Addictions Consulting/CAConsulting is licensed to provide one of the three (3) state approved Impaired Driver’s Education Program (IDEP) DUI classes. The program makes use of methods such as cogitative behavioral therapy to help individuals change their thinking in reference to their drinking habits. The aim is to help you avoid your decisions to drive after consuming any amount of alcohol. Remember any amount is too much if you plan to drive. CAConsulting also offers personalized treatment planning tailored to the individual. The plan changes frequently as the individual completes navigates through the DUI classes towards full compliance and completion of the program. This program meets the state requirements for the DMV and Probation departments in Colorado. For more information on DUI requirements for the State of Colorado contact us at (303) 379-6490.