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Aggressive Middle Tennessee Criminal Defense Lawyers Answer Your Driving Under the Influence (DUI) Questions – FAQs

Knowledgeable legal representation from an experienced DUI attorney

At Dotston & Taylor Attorneys at Law, we have represented clients throughout Middle Tennessee for more than four decades. Driving under the influence, DUI, is a serious charge that requires skillful legal representation to protect your legal rights and your freedom. Common questions our skilled attorneys receive about DUIs are discussed below.

What is DUI?

In Tennessee, impaired driving is presumed if you have a blood alcohol concentration of 0.08 percent or higher. If you are under 21, impaired driving is found when you have a BAC of .02 or higher. If you are a commercial driver, any BAC at or above .04 percent is above the legal limit.

What is implied consent?

In Tennessee, all drivers are said to give implied consent to take a requested test during a valid stop for suspicion of DUI. If you refuse to take the chemical test, your license can be suspended for one year. Additionally, you can still be charged with DUI.

Will I go to jail if I am convicted of a DUI?

In Tennessee, there are mandatory, minimum penalties if you are convicted for DUI. The penalties depend on how many times you have been convicted of a DUI offense. The potential minimum penalties include:

  • First offense: 48 hours in jail, $350 fine, loss of driving privileges for one year
  • Second offense: 45 days in jail, $600 fine, loss of driving privileges for two years
  • Third offense: 120 days in jail, $1,100 fine, loss of driver’s privileges for three years
  • Fourth offense: 150 days in jail, $2,500 fine, loss of driving privileges for five years

What are other consequences of being convicted of DUI?

In addition to potential jail time, fines and loss of driving privileges, you face many other consequences if you are convicted. You might be required to install an ignition interlock device. If you are a commercial truck driver, your CDL and ability to earn a living can be suspended for one year for a first offense. A fourth or subsequent DUI offense is considered a felony. You could acquire a criminal record that follows you around the rest of your life.

Can I still drive after I am arrested for DUI?

Yes. Your driving privileges are not affected until a judge issues an order that suspends your license. So, if your case is ultimately dismissed, your driving privileges may never be affected. If you are ultimately convicted of DUI or an implied consent violation, the judge has to suspend your driver’s license for at least one year. However, you might be able to use a restricted driver’s license to get to work or school.

Am I required to take a field sobriety test?

No. A law enforcement officer may request that you take a field sobriety test. However, the results of this test are only used to increase suspicion that you are impaired. Any evidence acquired during these tests can be used against you in court to show that you were under the influence. There are also many problems associated with the accuracy of these tests, so it is unlikely to be in your best interest to agree to these tests.

Contact a practiced Middle Tennessee DUI attorney for a strategic defense

If you would like to protect your legal rights and protect your freedom after a DUI arrest, it is important to contact an experienced DUI attorney. A knowledgeable DUI lawyer from Dotson & Taylor can discuss your case with you and develop a legal strategy specifically crafted to your particular situation. Contact us online or call us at 615-890-1982 for a free case review