DUI Lawyer | Are DUIs Zero Tolerance in South Carolina?

DUI Lawyer | You’ve probably heard that South Carolina has a zero-tolerance policy when it comes to DUIs. This can be especially scary for first-time offenders; however, the zero-tolerance really only applies to drivers who are under 21 years old when they receive a DUI with a blood-alcohol level of .02 or higher. This much lower than the blood alcohol level limits for drivers over 21, which is .08. If you’re over 21 and get a DUI, the first thing you should do is get a DUI lawyer. After you secure a lawyer, here is what you can expect:

  1. Three Options- Once you are charged, you will have three options for litigating the charge. You can plead guilty and accept the consequences that the magistrate offer; ask for a bench trial where only the judge decides your fate, or ask for a jury trial which can take six months to 12 years in some cases. If you request a trial, you’ll be held in jail until you can bond out. 
  2. Penalties- If you are convicted of your DUI, the DUI lawyer, you hire will be able to negotiate your sentence within the minimum and maximum penalty range. For a first-time offense in South Carolina, most defendants will face anywhere from two to ninety days in the county jail (if there were no injuries or damages and dependent on the blood alcohol level). You will also face up to $1,000 in jails and have your driver’s license suspended by the state for six months. 
  3. Ignition Interlock Device- After your jail time, if you receive any, or even if you don’t have to serve time, you will probably be ordered to have an ignition interlock device, IID, installed on your vehicle. An IID is a breathalyzer that you must blow in to test your blood alcohol level before your car starts. You may have your breathalyzer for a few months to a few years after your conviction when you can get your driver’s license reinstated. 

If you have questions regarding your recent DUI arrest, call the Law Office of Peter David Brown, P.A. at 843-806-0899. 

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