Experienced DWI Attorney in Saratoga Springs – During this scary and stressful time, you want an attorney who will stand by your side, and be available to answer any questions you may have. The Law Office of Kyran D. Nigro has the experience in DWI cases to do just that.
Is driving under the influence of intoxicants (DUI/DWI) a felony or a misdemeanor in Saratoga Springs, NY? Under most circumstances, a first-time conviction for driving under the influence is a misdemeanor, but there are circumstances under which a DUI can be a charged as a felony crime. These circumstances vary by state and jurisdiction.
In many states, a drunk driving charge is considered a traffic offense or a misdemeanor, but those charges can be enhanced from standard misdemeanor DUI to felony DUI depending upon other factors.
You will likely undergo an alcohol evaluation to see the extent of your drinking habits and alcohol education to explain how drinking can affect your life and health.
As with any criminal charge, a person charged with driving while intoxicated (DWI) (also called “driving under the influence” (DUI)) is presumed innocent until proven guilty. If guilt is established (often through the defendant’s own plea or after a jury trial), the penalty will depend on state law, as well as on any aggravating circumstances (such as accidents and injuries).
In most states, a first-offense DUI or DWI is classified as a misdemeanor and punishable by no more than six months or a year in jail. However, in a few states, the maximum jail time for a first DUI is even shorter. For example, the maximum jail time for a first DWI in New Jersey is 30 days. And, although it’s uncommon, there are states like Pennsylvania where a first DUI doesn’t carry any possible jail time. Many states also require minimum jail sentences of at least several days on a first offense.
With second and subsequent DUIs, the maximum possible jail time might be greater. But it’s even more common for the mandatory minimum jail sentence to be longer than it is for a first offense. In Colorado, for instance, the minimum jail time is five days for a first offense, 10 days for a second offense, and 60 days for a third offense. But the maximum jail time for a first, second, and third DUI in Colorado is one year—the same for all three offenses.