How to Avoid Stiff Penalties After a New York DWI
According to the New York DMV, "Driving While Intoxicated (DWI) is a crime. If you are convicted, you will face a substantial fine, a mandatory surcharge, license revocation, higher insurance premiums, and a possible jail sentence. " So how can you avoid these stiff penalties? It might be easy to say -- never drink and drive -- but that's the #1 way to do so.
Why are the New York DWI laws so strict?
Traffic accidents are nationally some of the biggest killers in the country. And one third of deaths in New York state involve someone who's been drinking or using drugs and driving. You are a danger to others driving, to pedestrians on the road, and if you have passengers, you're putting them in danger.
If you are over the limit -- the blood alcohol content (BAC) limit is .08 for all 50 states -- you are four time more likely to get into a car accident than someone who hasn't been drinking. Also, young drivers are in some of the most danger; it makes sense, as the younger you are the less experience you have driving.
If you drink, it can alter your decision making process while driving, not seeing angles, turns, or traffic lights correctly. All it takes is one mistake and it could cost someone's life and lead to an arrest.
So we know why New York State DWI laws are so strict. What can you do to avoid the stiff penalties?
Hire An Attorney
Your first choice may in fact be whether you should fight this case. If you believe the breathalyzer test was wrong, that you need not plead guilty to the charge, you can. There are some cases where sobriety tests are inaccurate. To do so, you need an experienced New York DWI attorney. They are not free, but a good one saves you time and money, doesn't take it. Reading a guide like this one is good, but it does not mean you know everything there is to know. You need someone who's fought and won cases, if not lessening charges. The best way to limit penalties is to hire the right attorney.
How will they defend you? An attorney may find out the officer acted incorrectly, that he or she had no right to pull you. You may have been pulled over for reasons other than your driving, such as how you look (if you're a minority, for example). Also, the officer may have made mistakes in the arrest, incorrectly using the breathalyzer, or never reading your Miranda, or was inappropriate with you.
Always Hire a Taxi or Ask for a Ride
Finally, just avoid drinking and driving. If you've been through this situation once, that's more than enough. If you never have to go through this process, you can avoid jail time, fines, and license suspensions. You can also be safer, and other drivers on the road will appreciate it.