Being charged with a DUI in the state of Florida can be a very upsetting experience. You may be taken into police custody and fingerprinted, face formal criminal charges, have your driver's license suspended, be forced to go through a criminal trial and pay a number of criminal penalties, if convicted. It is very important to be armed with information during the process.

The Ansara Law Firm can help when you are facing DUI charges. As a Boward County criminal defense firm, we represent clients throughout Fort Lauderdale and the surrounding area in DUI cases, helping our clients to explore all possible options for avoiding conviction or minimizing Florida DUI penalties. We have also assembled a list of Florida DUI FAQ's to help you better understand what you are in for when you are charged with a Fort Lauderdale DUI.

When can I be charged with DUI?

In the state of Florida, you may be charged with a DUI when your blood alcohol content (BAC) is above the legal driving limit of .08. You may also be charged if you demonstrate noticeable impairment of your normal faculties caused by drugs or alcohol, even if you are technically below the legal limit. Finally, teens may be charged under a zero tolerance policy.

What are the penalties for a DUI?

The penalties for a DUI in Florida depend upon whether you have ever had a conviction for driving under the influence in the past and on whether there were any aggravating factors.

For a first offense, you may be fined between $500 and $1000 unless your BAC exceeded .15, in which case you may face a fine of between $1,000 and $2,000. First time offenders have to do a minimum of 50 hours of community service and can serve up to six months in jail, or up to 9 months with a high BAC.

The fines, community service and incarceration time just go up from there. For instance, once you are on your fourth or subsequent conviction, you will be fined a minimum of $2,000 and face up to five years of imprisonment.

Will I need an ignition interlock device?

An ignition interlock device is a device that requires you to have your breath alcohol level tested before you can start your vehicle. Under Florida law, any driver who is convicted of a second DUI offense is required to have an ignition interlock device. If you are required to have a device installed, you will need to pay for the costs of installation and ongoing reporting/maintenance.

Will I have a criminal record?

DUI is a crime in the state of Florida. You may be charged with misdemeanor DUI or with felony DUI if you are a habitual offender. Your misdemeanor or felony conviction will show up on your criminal record, just like any other criminal conviction.

There are, however some opportunities in certain cases to plead the charges down or to enter first time offender programs that will allow you to avoid having a permanent criminal record if you comply with certain requirements. The Ansara Law Firm will help those charged with Fort Lauderdale DUI to determine if any of these options may be available to you and will prepare your case for trial.

Can I defend myself against DUI charges?

It is possible to defend yourself against DUI charges. While every case is different, The Ansara Law Firm may be able to help you raise a number of defenses, including a faulty breathalyzer/ BAC test. You may also be able to argue insufficient evidence or that a violation of your constitutional rights occurred and that evidence against you should be suppressed.

The best option if you wish to defend yourself against Fort Lauderdale DUI charges is to speak with an experienced Boward County DUI lawyer to learn about what defenses may be available in your particular situation.

How Can A Lawyer Help Me?

Hiring a lawyer is the best way to respond to DUI charges. Your DUI attorney will explain your legal rights and review your case to provide you with details on the best course of action for avoiding the serious consequences of a DUI.

If you have been charged with DUI in Broward, call The Ansara Law Firm today for your free initial consultation at (954) 761-4011! You can also contact us online. It only takes a minute to call, but it can make all the difference in the world.