DWI / DUI

You are here because someone you care about has been arrested for DWI . You are seeking information and searching for answers on the internet. Here is the good news. We are here to defend you and will provide substantive initial information and guidance on what to do right now. We will explain the process and what to expect. We will also show you how to get your license back so you can go to work, school, or pick up your children. Of course, this information is general in nature. For more specific legal guidance, we will need to meet and review the particular circumstances of your case.

Under current NC law, our first and preferred option is to file a DMV suspension challenge hearing. Timing is critical here. You have just ten (10) days after arrest to pursue this option. Otherwise, this option is lost. In this proceeding, the State of North Carolina has three (3) days to respond. In many cases, they actually waive this right, and we go forward with your petition before a District Court judge. If successful, your driver’s license (NC resident) or driving privileges (if from another State) are restored in full. No restrictions. No limitations, and best of all, no additional costs. In most cases, you have just 10 days from the date of your arrest to retain your driving privileges or to obtain an administrative hearing so you can continue to go back and forth from work or school. Call Scott today for a free consultation on your case and learn what you need to do. 828-333-4867.

Scott Dillin is uniquely qualified to handle your case. As a former District Attorney, he has intimate knowledge of the procedures that go into prosecution of cases like yours -- and the contacts to help expedite the process in your favor. Your time is important, and any delays can unnecessarily threaten your ability to keep your license and/or driving privileges.

I’ve just been arrested for DUI. What happens now?

You’re going to have a lot of questions. Call for a free consultation and to go over a case strategy. When you call for a consultation, you will deal directly with Scott; not a legal secretary, and not some junior associate. This level of one-to-one communication makes it easier to get your case handled quickly and most effectively.

At the time of my arrest, the officer confiscated my driver license. How do I get it back?

You are eligible to obtain your license after 30 days and payment of the $100 fee. However, if driving is a priority we can help you obtain a limited driving privilege as early as 10 days after the arrest without the need for you to go to court.

Do I need a hearing to get a restricted driver license to go to and from work?

Normally we can obtain a pre-trial limited driving privilege without the need for you to attend a hearing. Should you be found guilty of DWI, we will help to arrange a limited driving privilege to allow travel for work and school for eligible drivers.

What am I supposed to do with the ticket and other papers the officer gave me?

Keep all documentation for your initial consultation. This includes your original ticket, suspension documents, and Intoxilyzer results showing Blood Alcohol Content. Sometimes these documents reveal fatal flaws in the State’s case against you.

What is the purpose of an administrative hearing and what can it do for me?

If you’ve refused to submit to a chemical test, your license will be automatically revoked for one year. Sometimes, there are legitimate reasons why you could not submit to such a test, and you must request a hearing within a very short time frame to preserve this ‘appeal’.

I was on a court-ordered probation for a DUI conviction and have been arrested for DUI. What happens now?

If you have a probation officer, they will likely be in contact regarding your new charges to arrange a probation violation hearing. Some wait until the new charges are resolved, but this is not always the case. It is important to contact us as soon as possible to discuss your options and to minimize the impact on your record and finances. First Offense In North Carolina, the state’s DMV is very strict when it comes to all DWI charges, regardless whether it is for a 1st offense arrest or not. They can and will suspend a person’s driver’s license unless the driver can successfully win the case at the DMV license revocation hearing. The length of time for how long a license suspension will be for with a first offense DWI case, will be determined by a number of factors and information within the driver’s arrest details and police report.

Three of the most important facts that determine how long a license will get suspended for a DWI include:

  1. If a driver has a prior DWI offense on their record, in NC or any other state.
  2. Whether there was an accident with injuries or property damage
  3. Did a driver refuse to take a Breathalyzer or blood test by police

Second Offense

Then you are arrested for DWI in the state of North Carolina you are probably very concerned about what could happen to you, and that’s understandable. If you are facing a first offense DWI, that’s tough enough. But if you are charged with a second offense or other enhanced penalties, you need to understand the complex DWI levels system. DWI’s are charged as Level 1-5, with Level 5 DWI indicating a 1st offense, low BAC, no accident, no aggravating circumstances, and Level 1 being the harshest.

With any DWI, you will face certain penalties. Things like jail time and fines, though, are dictated by the DWI Level you are charged with.

Level I

  • Jail Time - 30 days- 2 years
  • Fines - Up to $4,000

Level II

  • 7 days- 1 year
  • Fines - Up to $2,000

Level III

  • 72 hours- 6 months
  • Fines - Up to $1,000

Level IV

  • 48 hours- 120 days
  • Fines - Up to $500

Level V

  • 24 hours- 60 days
  • Fines - Up to $200

Yes, there are always opportunities to fight the case in court, and take it all the way to trial, if necessary. We can challenge the reason the police pulled you over in the first place, challenge the validity of the so-called field sobriety tests. We can also challenge the science or the breath test machine, or question that is was used property according to police training, and make sure it’s maintenance records are current.

If we are looking to negotiate a deal, we may be able to get some charges reduced. Depending on your circumstances we may be able to help you get probation in lieu of jail time.

Cost of a DUI

When arrested and charged with DWI, your driver’s license (if you are a NC resident) or your driving privileges (if you are from another state) is taken away for thirty (30) days. At the end of that period, you will have to pay a civil restoration fee of $100.00 to get your license back and be able to drive in North Carolina. If you are from another state, you can drive anywhere on your home state’s license except North Carolina. Once you get your license back, you can drive at will until the final outcome of your criminal DWI case, whether by plea or trial. If you win your case, there is no further interruption of your ability to drive. If you lose or plea, your license will be suspended for one (1) year. However, in most cases, you can petition the court for a post-trial limited driving privilege.

The decision of which DWI attorney to retain is critical and can often make a real difference in outcome. DUI law is both technical and complex. Lawyers who have a general practice should be carefully scrutinized. Criminal court often involves going to trial. Look for an experienced trial attorney who practices DWI law regularly, if not every day. After reviewing years in practice and other credentials, we also encourage clients to personally meet with several different firms. In the end, you should hire the DWI lawyer who is able to answer your questions, gives you confidence in their ability, and places you at ease. DWI cases take months to complete. You and your lawyer will spend significant time together as you work through the process. Make sure you are comfortable in all aspects with the DWI attorney you hire.

The cost of a DWI can be enormous. Let us take a look at your circumstances and determine the best route to take. We are very experienced in these matters. Don't try and do it alone.

Contact us today for a free consultation - 828-333-4867

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