Defeat Your DUI Charges with a Columbus DUI Attorney
If you’ve reached this page that means you, or a loved one, have been arrested for driving under the influence (DUI) and you’re wondering if a Columbus DUI attorney can help you. This is surely a stressful time in your life as your uncertain about your future and aren’t clear as to how a DUI conviction can affect you. The first step is to become well informed about the possible penalties that can result from a DUI conviction. We provide some of the most important and relevant information on this page. After learning more about your situation, you should feel more confident about your future and in a Columbus DUI attorney’s ability to defend your case.
What is DUI / OVI?
In Columbus, the offense normally called a DUI, is instead referred to as an OVI, which stands for operating a vehicle under the influence of drugs or alcohol. DUIs are a common charge in Columbus and thousands of people get arrested for DUIs each year. Weekends are definitely the most likely days to get caught for a DUI since that is when most people consume alcohol or drugs. There are in fact two types of DUI / OVIs: OVI impaired and OVI Per se. Both types of OVIs has different defenses that can be used. Neither one is worse than the other and both require a Columbus DUI attorney to sort through the evidence.
A police officer will charge an individual with an OVI impaired when in the officer’s subjective opinion there are signs that the individual in question has been drinking or taking drugs. These outward signs can include how the individual looks or smells, how they were driving or how they pulled over, what and how they speak to the officer, and their performance on various field sobriety tests. Basically, the idea with OVI impaired is that the officer has an opinion that you were driving under the influence, but no conclusive evidence.
OVI Per se is slightly different from an OVI impaired. In fact, OVI Per se can be considered a more justified and fair method of charging an individual with a DUI. This is because this method is not subjective to the arresting officer’s opinion of your condition to drive. OVI Per se charges occur when an individual submits to some sort of blood, breath, or urine test. Therefore, there is conclusive evidence to the chemical state of your body when you were driving.
Columbus DUI / OVI Penalties
If you are found guilty of a OVI/DUI, there are several scenarios that could happen depending on a few factors. These include but are not limited to:
- your blood alcohol level
- whether it was your first DUI/DWI
- whether you are under-21
- did the DUI/DWI lead to an accident
- was anyone hurt if there was an accident
- did anyone die
For most first or second time offenders, the likely consequence of a OVI/DUI is a minor misdemeanor charge with a range of punishments such as imprisonment for less than 6 month, restriction of driving privileges, fines, and points added to the driver’s driver license. You will most likely be offered jail alternatives such attendance of substance abuse classes, house arrest or wearing a tracking bracelet. Restriction of driving privileges for most first time or second time offenders will most likely be a suspension period.
For repeat offenders, or if the OVI/DUI lead to an accident, the likely charge will be a felony. The punishment for an OVI/DUI felony charge will be imprisonment for at least 60 days in addition to suspension of driving privileges, fine, and the mandatory installation of ignition interlocks. No jail alternative exist for felony charges and all OVI/DUI offender must enter into some type of treatment for alcohol abuse.
Click Here or on the above image to see the Columbus DUI / OVI penalties in chart form (PDF)
How Can a Columbus DUI Attorney Help Me?
Knowing your legal rights and options is critical when you’ve been charged with a DUI in Columbus. Your life will be significantly impacted by DUI conviction, so you must do whatever is in your power to avoid the conviction. Fighting your DUI charges can mean the different between a license suspension, costly fines, jail time and getting your charges dismissed. That’s why it is essential to speak to an experience Columbus DUI attorney to review your specific case. Only a lawyer is experienced enough to know all of the intricacies related to a DUI charge.
You can always represent yourself but an OVI/DUI attorney can help you tremendously in the course of a driving under the influence case. For example, an OVI/DUI attorney can help reduce your punishment based on your driving history and the seriousness of the OVI/DUI. A Columbus DUI lawyer can also help you negotiate a deal for an ignition interlock instead of complete suspension of your driving privileges. For some first time offenders, the lawyer may be able to help you retain your driving privileges in exchange for mandatory substance abuse classes and/or fines. Finally, if none of the above options are possible, a OVI/DUI attorney can take your case to trial and acquit you of the charges.
Are you in trouble? Contact us.
A competent Columbus DUI attorney can help you understand all of your legal rights and you can rest assured that your case is in the best of hands.