Many times when someone is arrested for a first-time DUI in Guilford, it is also their first time dealing with the criminal justice system. Unfortunately, this only compounds the nerves and confusion felt by most people in these situations. Most people who receive a DUI charge are typical law-abiding citizens who made a mistake or are believed to have made a mistake by the court. Despite this, the penalties for a first-time DUI can be quite severe and long-lasting. If you are facing a 1st Guilford DUI charge, read on to learn what you are up against and how you can defend yourself.
First-time DUI offenders face the following punishments – probation, community service, a fine of up to $1,000.00, up to six months in jail, a 45-day loss of license, and one year of driving with the use of an ignition interlock device once the driver’s license is reinstated.
Alcohol Education Program
In Connecticut, first-time offenders, when eligible, are often able to take advantage of a pre-trial diversionary program. This is the Pretrial Alcohol Education Program. Upon successful completion of the program, a DUI charge will be dismissed. This program, in essence, takes the place of the trial, and the defendant must waive their right to a speedy trial and toll the statute of limitations.
Call us today to schedule a free consultation with my team. Hope will not fix your Connecticut DUI charge. Contacting us can!
The program typically entails speaking with the Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services, as well as the court division called Court Support Services, who inform the court of what would best serve the defendant in this given situation. Completion of 10-15 counseling sessions, a victim impact panel, and any other counseling ordered by the court are all part of the Alcohol Education Program as an alternative to trial.
However, not everyone is eligible for these programs. You may be disqualified from this program if you have a commercial driver’s license, you have been convicted of past vehicle incidents that resulted in death or injury, or if you are under the age of 21. Even if you are eligible, it is best to discuss this option with a DUI defense lawyer before agreeing to participate. There can be pros and cons of using this program that should be discussed before you make your decision.
Minors and First-Time DUI
People under 18 are not eligible for this program and must also refrain from surpassing .02% BAC if they are pulled over for a DUI. For people aged under 18, the arresting officer will confiscate their driver’s license, and it will be returned only if the guardian brings the minor to the police station and signs out the license once the suspension has been completed.
If you have been charged with a first-time DUI in Guilford, it behooves you to contact a DUI defense attorney. To have someone that will negotiate the best possible outcome on your behalf, contact Lady DUI today. Our team is ready to help.