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Penalties Following First Offense Arlington DUI

As a major community neighboring the District of Columbia, Arlington sees a lot of DUI charges. The local law enforcement officials are trying to discourage driving under the influence as much as possible, especially with the area continuing to grow.

An Arlington DUI lawyer can provide invaluable aid to someone who has been arrested and charged with such an offense. Start creating a strong defense by calling an attorney immediately.

Penalties: Aggravating & Mitigating Factors

For a first-time DUI, the maximum penalty is up to 12 months in jail, a $2,500 fine, and a one-year loss of license. Typically if it is a first-offense DUI, there is no accident, and there are no aggravating factors or an elevated blood alcohol content—meaning at or above a 0.15—you likely will not do active jail time.

Typically you will have a suspended jail sentence. That means the sentence is hanging over your head for one year and if you get in trouble or do not comply with the court’s order, they can impose the balance of the suspensions. You will usually have a fine of $1,500 or $1,200 suspended in Arlington.

That means that you are responsible to pay the $300 fee and you may also have to pay the $1,200 if you are suspended—meaning it’s hanging over your head for the year, conditioned upon your good behavior and complying with the court order.

Requirements

Additionally, on any convictions for DUI in Virginia, you must enter into and complete the Alcohol Safety Action Program (ASAP). That is a requirement in every court in Virginia and Arlington is no exception. You will also lose your license for a period of one year, automatically.

The loss of license is also required by Virginia law and cannot be changed. You can get a restricted license, but under the laws of Virginia you must have an ignition interlock device for at least six months if you’re convicted of DUI and get a restricted license. Additional you will have to pay any court cost and other fines that are associated with that.

If your blood alcohol content is elevated—meaning it is at or above 0.15 but not more than 0.20—you will have a mandatory minimum five days in jail in addition to a fine, the ASAP program, and a one-year loss of license.

If your blood alcohol content is 0.21 or more, you will have mandatory 10 days in jail in addition to the license loss for one year, the ASAP program, and any fines in court cost. If there’s an accident involved, the prosecutors will often seek jail time, even if your blood alcohol content is fairly low.

Diversion Programs in First-Time Arlington DUI Offenses

It is very rare that an Arlington prosecutor would offer a diversion program on a DUI charge. The Arlington prosecutors and courts are seeking convictions and fines. They are seeking a loss of license. They want you to take the ASAP program and in certain cases they will seek active jail time, so rarely do they divert a DUI charge into a lesser charge.

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