How Will a Second DUI Affect My Record?
Charges related to driving under the influence (DUI) are a serious matter in Tennessee. Drunk driving presents a danger to others on the road, and law enforcement officials are aggressive in apprehending and pressing charges against suspects. With some of the toughest drunk driving laws in the country, Tennessee imposes heavy fines and jail time on many convicted of driving while intoxicated. With a second DUI, these penalties become even more severe.
Under the Tennessee Statutes (Tenn. Code Ann. § 55-10-402) , a first or second DUI offense is generally classified as a misdemeanor charge, meaning that you face a jail sentence of less than a year. However, there are circumstances in which a second DUI may be charged as a felony;
● If you had an excessively high alcohol content level;
● If there was a minor child in the vehicle;
● If you were involved in a car accident while driving under the influence;
● If you were involved in an accident resulting in injuries or death.
While misdemeanor charges still require a strong legal defense, felony charges are a far more serious matter. In addition to the penalties you face, it can have a long-ranging impact on your future. Regardless of the circumstances, or whether this is your first or second offense, you need a strong Manchester DUI defense attorney on your side.
In the state of Tennessee , a second DUI offense could result in fines of up to $3,500, a two-year driver’s license revocation, and a jail sentence of up to 11 months. This is in addition to mandatory alcohol education classes and any restitution you are required to pay. If your first conviction fell within a five-year period, the judge may also order an ignition lock device on your vehicle once your license is restored.
Along with these penalties, you face potential negative repercussions in other areas of your life, as well. A DUI is part of your permanent record, appearing in any background checks or public record searches. This can have the following impact:
● You may be immediately fired from your job and have problems getting hired for certain types of work or job positions;
● You may be unable to get student loans and may be disqualified from certain educational programs and job fields;
● Your ability to get certain types of public and private assistance or benefits may be limited;
● You may be unable to get a loan or to get approved for things such as a car lease or apartment rental.
If you are charged with DUI, your first call should be to the Law Offices of Burch & Lockhart. We provide the aggressive legal representation needed to build you a strong defense. Reach out and contact our Manchester DUI defense attorney and request a consultation today.