Experienced and dedicated DWI & DWAI lawyers – Call Today – (518) 907-4694

 

dwiBeing charged with DWI or DWAI in New York is a very serious offense. A DWI or DWAI conviction can affect all aspects of your life, with penalties that range from losing your license to serving time behind bars. If an officer arrests you for driving while drunk or driving while under the influence of drugs, it is best to retain a knowledgeable DWI attorney, in order to secure the best possible outcome from your drunk driving arrest. In New York, there is no such crime as DUI (driving under the influence); instead driving under the influence is classified as either DWI (driving while intoxicated), DWAI (driving while ability impaired), or DWAI-Drugs (driving while impaired by drugs or the combined influence of drugs and alcohol).

There are a number of factors which can affect the criminal charges involved in a drunk driving arrest. For residential vehicles, you will be charged with DWI if you have been driving with a blood alcohol content of .08 and you are over the age of 21. This charge can be elevated to a felony if you have a passenger 15 years or age or less in the vehicle, or if you have been convicted of DWI in the preceding ten years. If you are under the age of 21, a blood alcohol content of .02 or above will result in a Zero Tolerance Law arrest. A blood alcohol content of .04 or greater will result in a DWI charge when operating commercial vehicles. DWAI generally occurs when a driver is determined to have a blood alcohol content (BAC) of .05 to .07. Typically, this conduct constitutes a violation but the charge can be elevated to a misdemeanor or felony if the driver is determined to be driving under the influence of drug other than alcohol, or a combination of drugs and alcohol. In most cases, a blood alcohol content (BAC) test is administered by the arresting office after you have been pulled over to determine the level of intoxication. In other cases, a blood sample is drawn. If you refuse to submit to a BAC test or blood test, your driver’s license could be automatically be suspended for one year, and you may incur a $500 fine for violating the state’s implied consent law. If you refuse to submit to a test, and have had a previous DWI conviction within the past five years, the penalties for refusing the BAC or blood test become even more severe.

When charged with DWI, it is possible that your license will be suspended pending prosecution of your case. So even though you have not been convicted, you may still be unable to drive. If you live in an area where traveling by car is a necessity, the Kokosa Law Firm may be able to obtain a hardship license, which will allow you to drive to under certain circumstances. However, a hardship hearing may be held at your arraignment or within days after, so if you have been arrested for DWI, be sure to call the Kokosa Law Firm as quickly as possible.

Once your DWI / DWAI case heads to prosecution, there are a number of potential outcomes:

For a first drunk driving or driving while ability impaired offense:

  • Misdemeanor (unless you were pulled over with someone 15 or younger in the car, in which case Leandra’s Law will make even a first offense a felony);
  • Fines range from $500-$1000;
  • Mandatory court surcharges;
  • Revocation of driver’s license;
  • Possible revocation of registration for at least 6 months;
  • Possible jail sentence, up to 1 year;
  • Mandatory ignition interlock device placed in vehicle;
  • Possible probation sentence of up to three years;
  • If BAC is .18 or greater, penalties can be increased (aggravated DWI).

For a second drunk driving or driving while ability impaired offense:

  • Felony (if within 10 years a prior offense);
  • Fines range from $1,000 – $5,000;
  • Mandatory court surcharges;
  • Revocation of driver’s license;
  • Possible revocation of registration for up to 1 year;
  • Mandatory ignition interlock device placed in vehicle;
  • Possible prison sentence, up to 4 years, or possible jail sentence of up to six months and up to five years of probation supervision; if convicted within 5 years of a prior offense, you are required to serve at least 5 days in jail or 30 days of community service.

For a third drunk driving or driving while ability impaired offense:

  • Class D felony, if you have a third conviction within 10 years;
  • Fines range from $2,000 – $10,000;
  • Mandatory court surcharges;
  • Revocation of driver’s license;
  • Mandatory ignition interlock device placed in vehicle;
  • Possible prison sentence of up to 7 years, or possible jail sentence of up to six months and up to five years of probation supervision.

The team at Kokosa Law Firm is experienced in negotiating with prosecutors and litigating DWI and DWAI cases, as governed by section 1192 of the vehicle and traffic law, or 1192 VTL. We can often accelerate judicial processes,  reduce fines, and assist client in retaining their driver’s licenses. In some cases, a DWI or DWAI arrest may not have been performed correctly, and it is possible to litigate a DWI / DWAI case to a not guilty verdict. The Kokosa Law Firm has in-depth knowledge of DWI / DWAI case law and experience in working with prosecutors throughout the capital region, our team is available to help you throughout this difficult process.

If you have been arrested and charged for drunk driving or driving while under the influence of drugs in Albany, Troy, Schenectady, Saratoga, Clifton Park, Kingston, Glens Falls, Queensbury or any of the surrounding areas, give the team at Kokosa Law Firm a call today! (518) 907-4694 Our team represents our clients aggressively, in order to secure the best possible outcome from drunk driving arrests. While we hope that you won’t ever been arrested for drunk driving or driving under the influence of drugs, if you are, we will hard work to ensure a drunk driving arrest does not ruin the rest of your life.