Can you go to jail for driving under the influence (DUI) in FL? The short answer is yes, but much depends on the circumstances. If you’re convicted enough times for DUI in a short enough time frame, or you injure or kill someone in an accident, your chances of jail time increase. Many of those charged with driving under the influence (DUI) don’t serve jail time, but you need to know how the criminal justice system works and the ways to avoid incarceration to make this happen.
You may have many effective defenses against a DUI charge without knowing it. Panella Law Firm can investigate your case and find issues that may result in charges being dismissed or an outcome that avoids jail time. Call Panella Law Firm now at 407-233-1822 to discuss your case.
Can you go to jail for a first DUI? The law says yes, but again, much depends on the circumstances such as whether the charge is a misdemeanor or a felony, the county where the arrest took place, your breath or blood alcohol level (BAC), whether anyone was hurt, how strong the State’s evidence is, whether you have done things to show remorse and rehabilitation, etc. Other than the mandatory minimum sentences, a judge has discretion on whether or not to sentence you to jail and for how long (up to the maximum time allowed by statute). A judge may decide that your time in a residential alcoholism or drug abuse treatment program can be counted toward your prison sentence, or decide that jail is otherwise not appropriate in your case.
It doesn’t matter how many times you’re arrested — the issue is how many times you were convicted.
Possible imprisonment for Florida DUI includes:
An important reason to defend criminal charges and prevent a conviction is that the consequences of later convictions can be much harsher.
Florida’s DUI statute spells out facts other than the number of prior convictions that can lengthen imprisonment. If you’re convicted of a DUI and you . . .
These kinds of cases could lead to your spending years in jail. The more complex and serious the allegations, the more you need a DUI defense attorney to protect you and your future.
One way to avoid jail time is to be admitted to a pretrial diversion program. We would work with the prosecutor and ask the judge in your case to allow you to go this route instead of a going to trial. The judge would need to see this as an appropriate resolution given the facts of your case.
Pretrial diversion is like probation. If you’re accepted, there may be many conditions, including:
There are also fees you’d need to pay.
There are many reasons to put up a strong defense when you face DUI charges, and one them is to avoid jail time. The costs of imprisonment aren’t just the loss of freedom and having to endure confinement in a potentially dangerous jail or prison — they include other losses you may suffer.
If you’re arrested for DUI, you need to know your rights and the best options for defending yourself. Police and prosecutors don’t care about you or your life. They want easy convictions. The law and criminal justice system are too complex for you to go it alone.
Might you spend jail time for a DUI in FL? Yes, but just because you’re arrested doesn’t mean you’ll be convicted or serve time in prison. The prosecution has the burden of proof. If you have the right DUI lawyer, it may mean the difference between serving time or not.
How your case is resolved can affect you the rest of your life. The earlier we get involved in your case, the faster we will start investigating your arrest. Our defense strategy may result in charges being dismissed or a plea bargain agreement that keeps you out of jail. Call the Panella Law Firm at 407-233-1822 or fill out our contact form to schedule your free consultation.