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Gavel Rapped Down

Driving while drunk or otherwise impaired is dangerous. Yet, thousands of people make the mistake of drinking and driving each year. The results often prove sobering, to say the least.

What are some of the penalties that you might expect following a DUI? How can you avoid committing this offense in the first place?

Why DUIs Occur

Intoxication or inebriation by drugs or alcohol impairs your abilities. Heavy drinking might blur your vision, slow your reflexes and make it hard to concentrate. They might also impact your judgement. As a result, you cannot make decisions properly when inebriated.

You need to be able to see, react, and think to operate a vehicle. Drunk drivers have impaired abilities in all of these areas. As such, they have higher chances of wrecking, harming themselves or harming others — perhaps fatally.

Intoxication, therefore, makes diving risky, and the law recognizes that. The DUI penalty punishes those who commit such an offense. The results of this penalty are not pretty.

Penalties To Expect From DUIs

If you get charged with a DUI, multiple penalties might result. These can include:

  • Tickets or fines.
  • License suspensions or the addition of points to your license.
  • A requirement to attend counseling or drug rehab.
  • Jail time or probation.
  • The requirement to install breathalyzer detectors on your vehicle. Drivers will have to blow into these devices to record their blood alcohol levels. The car won't start if your alcohol content is above a legal limit.
  • Increased auto insurance prices or cancellation of your coverage. Insurers often view DUI recipients as risky drivers to insure. They might have to charge these drivers more to cover the risk they pose to the insurance company.
  • SR-22 requirements. The SR-22 is a form that will verify for your state that you have active car insurance. You'll have to keep it on file for a certain period, and you cannot let your insurance lapse during this time. SR-22s also signal risks for insurers, so they could lead to higher premiums.

If you're convicted of a DUI charge, your penalty will often depend on the local statute and the presiding judge. Your legal counsel can often help you better understand the penalties of DUIs.

Avoiding DUIs

You don't want to get a DUI. The simplest way to do that is to not drink and drive. You can do that through any number of safety procedures.

When drinking socially, let a sober friend drive, or use public transportation. Don't leave home if you've consumed alcohol before travel. Monitor how much you drink in public settings. With the right care, you can prevent the penalties that might come with this breach of the law.

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