Frequently Asked Questions about DUI and DWI
Why should I hire a lawyer for my DWI?
An experience and trained lawyer can carefully explain your rights and options and fight to defend you.
What if I am found guilty of DUI? Will I lose my license?
There are mandatory minimum penalties on any DWI/DUI conviction. In order to avoid the following penalties, you would have to have your case dismissed, reduced to a lesser charge, or be found not guilty. The minimum penalties for a first offense conviction are:
- 48 hours in jail
- 11 months and 29 days on probation
- Loss of driver’s license for 1 year
- 12 hours of DUI School
- 24 hours of roadside litter pickup
If you have had a previous DWI/DUI conviction, the minimum penalties become much more severe.
What happens if I refuse a blood or breath test?
If you are found guilty of violating the Tennessee Implied Consent law by refusing the blood test, you could lose your license for a year or worse. However, there are times when refusing the test is the best way to ensure you do not incriminate yourself. If you know there are no drugs or alcohol in your system, the test will likely help your case.
When will my blood test results be back?
The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation has a long waiting time for blood results. Your results may be back two months but sometimes it can take longer.
I was only on my prescription medications. Why was I charged with DUI?
When questioned by police, most people see no harm in admitting that they are on their prescription medications. However, police frequently arrest people for being only on their prescription medications. Having a prescription for the medications in your blood may be helpful but it is not an absolute defense. Driving while medicated cases are complex cases that require an experienced and knowledgeable lawyer.
Will I have to go to court?
Yes, but you may not need to be present for all of your court dates.
What is the difference between a DUI and DWI?
Not much now. Many years ago there was a distinction between DUI and DWI. The Tennessee legislature now criminalizes both “driving under the influence” and “driving while impaired” in the same statute Tennessee Code Annotated 55-10-401. Therefore, there is no legal difference between DUI and DWI under the current Tennessee law. However, there is a separate offense for people between the age of sixteen and twenty-one that is sometimes called underage driving while impaired.
What does a good DUI lawyer cost? And how much will all this cost me?
A good lawyer is never cheap. However, hiring the right lawyer may save you money in the long run. The cost of SR-22 insurance, fines, court costs, probation fees, ignition interlock or transdermal alcohol monitoring devices are expensive. The right lawyer can protect your career, your professional license, your reputation and your future.
After a free initial consultation, Mr. Owen will explain his fee and payment options. We accept credit cards and offer payment plans with affordable down payments so that you can get the representation you need.
If I gave blood, should I just plead guilty?
No. Even if your blood results come back over the legal limit, it is still possible to get your DWI/DUI cases dismissed or reduced to lesser charges.
DWI/DUI cases can be dismissed or reduce for many reasons. The officer may have violated your constitutional rights by not having probable cause to stop your car. The blood evidence in your case could have been mishandled. There are many different defenses to DWI/DUI, even when your blood is above the legal limit. Only an experienced and qualified lawyer can evaluate the specific facts of your case, determine what defenses you have, and give you the advice you need.