Have you or a loved one been charged with DUI (Driving under the Influence) in Fort Lauderdale? If so, you need to hire an experienced and knowledgeable DUI lawyer in Fort Lauderdale—and you need to do so immediately. After your Fort Lauderdale DUI arrest, there are two separate procedures that will be set to occur. First, the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (DHSMV) will automatically suspend your driver’s license for up to 18 months. You only have 10 days from the date of your DUI arrest to submit a request for a formal review hearing with the DHSMV to appeal your driver’s license suspension. As such, if you don’t hire a Fort Lauderdale DUI lawyer within 10 days of your DUI arrest, your lawyer will not be able to submit the appropriate filings to the DHSMV in order to get a chance to appeal your license suspension.
You’ll also want to hire a lawyer in time to have him or her represent you at your DUI arraignment hearing where you will have to enter your plea of guilty, not guilty, or no contest.
DUI Penalties in Florida
When it comes to a DUI charge, the stakes are just too high to not seek qualified legal representation. Even a first-time DUI conviction will stay on your driving record for a staggering 75 years and carry other life-altering, long-lasting penalties including:
- Up to six months in jail (if your BAC was .20 or higher, this sentence can be increased up to nine months; if you killed or injured someone while driving under the influence, this sentence will be increased to a minimum of two years);
- Fines of $500 to $1,000;
- Probation for up to one year;
- Driver’s license revoked for a minimum of six months;
- Mandatory 50 hours of community service;
- Vehicle impoundment or immobilization for 10 days;
- Increased car insurance costs or the possibility that your insurance carrier will drop you altogether;
- Level 1, 12-hour DUI school; and
- Possible ignition interlock device.
If you’re thinking of representing yourself for your DUI arrest, you need to think again. Florida’s DUI laws are too complex and the consequences of a DUI conviction are too high to go at this alone. Instead, the prudent choice is to retain the legal counsel of a seasoned DUI lawyer such as Yale Galanter or one of his trusted partners at the South Florida law firm of Galanter Law. Here at Galanter Law, we have been defending clients charged with DUI for nearly 30 years. You can rest assured that our Fort Lauderdale DUI lawyers will do everything in their power to protect your best interests and achieve the best possible result.