When someone is convicted of DUI in South Carolina, they’re going to be facing a lot of penalties. Some people think it’s just a matter of paying some fines and dealing with a suspension of their driver’s license. And both of these things will happen if you’re charged and convicted of driving under the influence in Greenville. However, there are also a lot of other consequences for this crime.
No matter whether it’s your first or third offense, you’re going to have to deal with pretty serious consequences. This is why it’s so important that you retain an experienced DUI defense lawyer in Greenville. They’ll increase your chances of having your charges reduced or dismissed. While there’s never a guarantee that this will happen, you’re much better off having a lawyer by your side.
Unlike a regular traffic ticket, if you’re charged with DUI in Greenville, you can’t just pay the ticket online. A lot of things are going to happen after you’re arrested. It can be complicated, and it can be scary. A skilled Greenville DUI lawyer can help.
You Will Spend Some Time in Jail – With or Without a Lawyer
If you’re arrested for DUI in South Carolina, you will have to spend some time in jail. This may be only a few hours or a few days. Even for your first DUI offense in Greenville, you can face up to a year in jail. And you’ll have to spend at least 48 hours in jail. You may be lucky and the judge will say you can do community service instead. But the day or night of your DUI arrest, you will be sitting behind bars.
You’ll also have to attend your first hearing within a few days of your arrest. This is where you’ll have to let the court know if you’re pleading guilty or innocent. Having an experienced DUI lawyer from South Carolina by your side is important. You don’t just want to plead guilty because it’s easier. A part of you may just want to get it over with and wait out your suspension. What you don’t realize is that the court may order all sorts of penalties. This includes:
- Suspension of driver’s license
- Jail time
- Enrollment in a drug and alcohol program
- Community service
- Installation of an ignition interlock device
None of these things are pleasant. Having a skilled Greenville DUI lawyer can make the difference in how severe your sentence is.
What is an Ignition Interlock Device and When is it Ordered in South Carolina?
Depending on the facts of your case, the judge may order you to install an ignition interlock device. It can be expensive to do this and you’ll have to bear the cost. If you have a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .15 or higher, you’ll be ordered to install an IID no matter what. Even if it’s your first offense, you’ll need to do this.
For people with a BAC of .08, you’ll be ordered to install this device for a 2nd offense or greater. So, if you have a prior DUI conviction and get arrested for DUI again, expect to be ordered to install an ignition interlock device. What this does is require you to blow into a breathalyzer machine before you can put your car into gear. If the device detects any alcohol in your system, the court will be notified, and your ignition will be locked.
One thing you need to know is that, if the court finds you were drinking and tried to drive, they can issue further sanctions. If you’re out on probation, they may revoke your probation. Or, if you were approved for a provisional license, it will also be revoked. You may even be ordered to go to jail in lieu of completing community service.
Contact a Skilled DUI Defense Lawyer in Greenville Immediately After Your Arrest
If you’re arrested for DUI, the first phone call you should make is to an experienced DUI lawyer in Greenville. They can help get you out of jail. They’ll also attend the first hearing with you. They will get all the discovery from the prosecutor and look to poke holes in your case. If they are able to get your charges reduced or dismissed, you won’t have to worry about the serious penalties associated with a DUI conviction. There is simply too much at stake to try to handle this on your own.