What To Know If You Are Facing Your 2nd DUI Charge

Posted on: 30 December 2019

Facing a first DUI charge is usually not that bad. After all, courts are a lot more lenient for first offenses than for repeat offenses, and this is why you will need to make sure you hire a lawyer right away as you face your second DUI charge. If this is where you are, here are several important things to know as you prepare to face this second charge.

The way you settled it has effects

If this is your second DUI, it means you had one in the past. When you faced that one in the past, how did you settle? Did it remain as a DUI on your criminal record, or did the court drop the charge or reduce it? The way you settled may affect your case as you face a second DUI. For example, if the court dropped the first one, then this one you are now facing would actually be viewed as your first one most likely. If the court reduced the charge the first time to reckless driving or something similar, then this new charge might also be viewed as a first DUI charge.

The lookback period also matters

The second thing to understand about this is that your state's lookback period might have positive effects on your case. First off, does your state have a lookback period? Most states do, but some do not. Secondly, you should understand what a lookback period is. When there is a lookback period, it means that the court will only count the first DUI you had if it happened within a certain amount of time. For example, suppose the lookback period in your state is 5 years. If your first DUI charge happened 6 years ago, it would no longer count against you. This is a very important factor to understand as you face this new charge.

Courts give harsher consequences for repeat offenses

Finding a way to fight this new charge is important too, as courts always give harsher consequences for people who have repeat offenses. The facts relating to your prior charge and your criminal record could benefit you as you face this charge, but if they do not, your lawyer can help you determine a good defense strategy.

If you are facing a second DUI charge, it is important to speak to a DUI attorney about your case. An attorney that offers DUI services understands DUI law and can help you fight your case.