Article provided by: William C. Head, PC
From casual drinks alone in the evening to get-togethers and full-on parties, there seems always to be an abundance of alcohol these days. The only condition, according to Georgia DUI laws, is that you must keep off the steering wheels after you've had a cup or two.
If, however, you fail to comply with this, you should know that outside Georgia speeding ticket fines, you'll have to deal with the DUI law in Georgia.
Definition of Driving Under Influence in Georgia
Several factors can make you look guilty, as far as DUI is concerned in Georgia. However, for you to be actually considered guilty, you have to meet different levels of intoxication. This is measured by your Blood Alcohol Concentration, which indicates what quantity of alcohol you have running in your system.
- 0.08% and above - You're guilty if you have this much alcohol in your bloodstream. You must be a 21-year old and older.
- 0.04% and above - This concentration of alcohol in your bloodstream proves you're guilty. But, only if you're operating a commercial vehicle. The benchmark here is significantly lower because Georgia can't allow you to endanger your passengers' lives, no matter who you are.
- 0.02% and above - This is referred to as zero tolerance. This concentration is used to define intoxication for anyone who is under 21.
Conditions for Your Guilt
Ordinarily, the Blood Alcohol Concentration is used to define your guilt and determine your level of intoxication. Beyond this, two specific things need to happen before you are reeled in as an offender.
- You must be under the influence of alcohol alongside other intoxicants. This includes marijuana and cocaine, among others.
- You must be behind the steering wheel or "in control of" the vehicle.
Penalties after Conviction
Once you've been found guilty, Georgia DUI laws prescribe a few punishments. These range in severity depending primarily on your offense frequency. So, you could be looking at something as little as the gravity of your first speeding ticket in Georgia or something multiple times larger than that.
- First Offence
In this case, your actions' consequences are still relatively light due to your infrequency as an offender. In this case, you could be looking at:
- 24 hours – 1 year maximum of jail time
- $300-$1000 fine
- Suspension of license for up to 12 months
- Forty hours of mandatory community service
- Substance abuse evaluation.
- Second Offence
For you to count as a second offender, you'll need to drink and drive again within the first ten years of your first offense. Here, things are a little more intense than your Atlanta speeding ticket cost. Your punishment will include:
- 72-hours – 90 days of jail time
- 30 days of community service
- $500-$1000 fine
- Loss of license for up to five years
- Substance abuse evaluation which may lead to the attachment of an IID to your car
- Forfeiture of tags.
- Third Offence
Like the second, this has to happen within the first ten years after the second offense. Your penalties could include:
- At least 15 days of jail time
- $1000-$5000 fine
- 30 days of community service
- License revocation for five years maximum
- Publication of name, photo, and address in a newspaper with the "habitual offender" label at your expense.
Georgia DUI laws are relatively serious. Even if it is just 24-hours, you really don't want to spend that time of your life in jail. As such, even if you are caught driving under the influence, your best bet is to get a great lawyer with a solid defense strategy. To do that, you can call William C Head for a free legal consultation: 404-567-5515.Georgia Dui Laws
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