DUI Defense Lawyer in Murfreesboro, TN
Elite Rutherford County Drunk Driving Defense
Being pulled over for driving under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs can be an intimidating, even nightmarish event. Tennessee DUI charges can lead to a host of penalties that can have a deeply negative impact on your life and future. Those penalties can include jail time, heavy fines, the loss of your driver’s license, increased care insurance premiums, and a criminal record. The first thing to remember in any DUI arrest is to remain polite, do not answer any questions from law enforcement, ask to speak with your lawyer, and otherwise stay silent.
As soon as possible after the arrest, we strongly advise that you contact the Law Office of Michael Auffinger to secure an aggressive DUI defense. As an experienced drunk driver lawyer serving clients in and around Murfreesboro, Attorney Auffinger understands what is at stake, how your life can be dramatically affected, and what can be done to give you the best chance at a favorable outcome during the Tennessee DUI process. He will start by thoroughly investigating all aspects of your arrest, from why you were pulled over in the first place, to all facets of police procedure, chemical testing, and more. Tennessee DUI cases are a complex mix of law, science, and technology, all of which he is completely familiar with when deconstructing cases in search of favorable evidence.
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What Are the DUI Laws in Tennessee?
Under Tennessee DUI laws, you can be charged with drunk driving under the following conditions:
- You were driving or were in physical control (even if the car was not moving) with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .08 percent or more. If your BAC measured .20 percent or higher, it is considered an “aggravated” DUI, and thus is subject to enhanced penalties.
- You were driving impaired by alcohol or any intoxicant, such as a controlled substance, drug, or anything that can affect the central nervous system. Impaired means that your driving ability was compromised, putting others on the road at risk.
- You are under 21 and were found driving with a BAC of .02. For those aged 16 to 20, your license will be suspended for one year, you will face a fine of $250, and may be ordered to complete a term of community service.
Generally, how you are charged in a DUI case will depend on whether your arrest was for a first, second, or subsequent offense within the last 10 years. Prior offenses that are taken into consideration include not only Tennessee DUIs, but drunk driving convictions from other states as well. First, second, and third offenses are charged as misdemeanors, while a fourth or subsequent offense will result in felony charges.
First Offense DUI
On a first DUI, you will face mandatory jail time. The minimum is 48 hours for those with a BAC below .20. With a BAC of .20, your mandatory jail time will generally be for seven days. Overall, jail sentences can range up to a year with fines between $350 and $1,500. You will also lose your license for a year and be required to complete an alcohol or drug abuse assessment followed by any recommended programs.
Second Offense DUI
On a second offense, you will face mandatory jail time of a minimum of 45 days up to a year in jail, along with a fine ranging from $600 up to $3,500. Your license will be revoked for two years and your vehicle may be confiscated. Getting your driving privileges back may involve a restricted license with an ignition interlock device to monitor your sobriety.
Third Offense DUI
On a third DUI, you will face mandatory jail time of 120 days up to a year in jail. Your fines will range from $1,100 up to $10,000. Your license will be revoked for six to 10 years without the possibility of being allowed to drive with a restricted license.
Fourth Offense DUI
As a felony, a fourth or subsequent DUI offense will lead to a minimum of a year in jail, a fine ranging from $3,000 up to $15,000, and a license revocation of eight years without the possibility of a restricted license.
You can also be charged with a DUI felony if your drunk driving led to the injury or death of a child passenger less than 13 years old, you caused an accident that led to a serious injury, or caused a vehicular homicide.
Tennessee Implied Consent Law
It is important to know that Tennessee is under “implied consent” law. This means that when you apply for a driver’s license, you have already consented to take chemical tests to determine if you are too impaired to drive. If you refuse to take the test, your driver’s license could be suspended along with other penalties.
Other DUI Penalties in Tennessee
On top of jail time and steep fines, being convicted of DUI in Tennessee can result in a variety of other penalties on top of your other sentences.
Ignition Interlock Devices
Some DUI convictions will require you to install an ignition interlock device on your vehicle. This divide is designed to prevent a car from starting until the operator has breathed into the breath-alcohol analyzer device and proving that their BAC does not exceed a specified level. In some cases the devices may also require the operator to retest while operating the vehicle. Tennessee also requires all ignition interlock devices to include a camera. This restriction typically lasts for about a year after having your drivers license reinstated.
Revoked or Suspended Licenses
Another penalty you may face is having your drivers license either suspended or revoked. The difference between a revoked vs suspended license is that a suspended license is only temporary, while a revoked license means that your license has been canceled. If your license was suspended, the court will set a specific timeframe for when your license will be reinstated. If your license was revoked, you will need to meet certain criteria before you can have it reinstated.
If you are caught driving with a suspended license or a revoked license, you may face even more penalties on top of your existing sentence.
Finally, another common penalty for driving under the influence is being required to attend DUI school in Tennessee. TN DUI school refers to the early intervention program that is designed to help individuals who have had their license suspended and want to have it reinstated. This program can also be required following a conviction, if ordered by a judge.
DUI classes in Murfreesboro, TN (and throughout the state) are required to provide a minimum of 12 hours of instruction.
Hire a Compassionate & Competent Murfreesboro DUI Attorney
Attorney Michael Auffinger understands the difficulties you face in any DUI arrest. He can provide you with the emotional support you need as well as aggressively protecting your rights. As a DUI attorney, he stays current on all of the changes to local and federal laws that could affect your case, ensuring that you always receive accurate information and guidance. With years of experience and a strong commitment to his clients, you can depend on superior legal service at the Law Office of Michael Auffinger.
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Attorney Michael Auffinger obtained a rare reversal and dismissal at the Court of Criminal Appeals.
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