OWI CAUSING INJURY
DUI Causing Injury
In all states, driving with a blood alcohol content (BAC) of .08 is considered to a certain degree a criminal defense and driving under the influence, which is a crime. Many factors can affect the number of drinks it takes a driver to get to this BAC, including the driver’s weight, genetic makeup, and gender. Even if your BAC is lower than .08, you may be too inebriated to drive. Consuming alcohol can reduce a driver’s reaction time to unexpected events like an accident and can cause a driver to drive erratically and end up involved in an accident causing property damage. Among the penalties are losing your driver’s license, jail time, community service and losing the ability permanently to operate a vehicle. It’s a serious criminal matter requiring criminal defense attorneys who only practice criminal defense law. Only a law firm that practices criminal defense law by criminal defense attorneys appreciates the penalties gearing up for a trial. This is especially true in situations involving an accident causing property damage.
The law firm or more specifically the defense firm who routinely represent those who operate a motor vehicle needs to know the penalties. For your sake the firm needs to handle only criminal law and criminal defense. Those charged with drunk driving in criminal court and acquitted may be surprised to find themselves still liable in civil court to anybody they injured or killed and involved in an accident. There is no defense that keeps you out of civil court if you are found guilty especially if you cause property damage. If you cause an accident damaging someone’s property it is someone’s else’s property and you owe them especially if you were found guilty beyond a reasonable doubt during a trial.
The criminal and civil justice systems are separate, and the standard of proof is more stringent in criminal than it is in civil court. In civil court you need to show property damage. The property damage is the amount which is going to be fought over. In criminal courts, the burden of proof is “beyond am reasonable doubt.” Usually, by contrast, the burden of proof in a civil personal injury lawsuit is “preponderance of the evidence.”
This means the plaintiff must prove a fact and damages by showing that his or her version of events is more likely than not to be accurate. Accordingly, there may be enough evidence to hold a person civilly liable for causing an injury while drunk driving, even though there is not enough evidence to prove the same person caused the accident “beyond a reasonable doubt.” Some states permit a person hurt by a drunk driver to sue not only the drunk driver but also the bar or other entity that served the alcoholic beverages in spite of the driver’s visible or obvious intoxication. These laws are known as “Dram Shop Liability” laws. These laws can be useful to plaintiffs because bars, other entities or another person may have insurance policies that permit recovery even if you are operating a vehicle, uninsured or underinsured and judgment-proof.
In any car crash case, the types of damages available to the party not at fault (another person and not the operator of the vehicle while intoxicated) may be both economic and noneconomic. Again it is property damage. Economic damages may include past and future wage loss, past and future medical bills, out-of-pocket expenses, household services, and vocational rehabilitation. Noneconomic damages are those intangible damages that may vary from case to case, such as pain and suffering and loss of consortium. Usually, plaintiffs invoke punitive damages in cases involving egregious wrongdoing with a vehicle by wealthy corporate defendants. However, in certain cases, those who pled guilty or who were convicted of a DUI may have to pay punitive damages in a civil case. The purpose of punitive damages in such a case is to impose a penalty that is harsh enough to deter the driver from driving drunk again.
DUI Causing Damage is the act of driving a vehicle while intoxicated. It has serious consequences on an individual’s personal and professional life, as well as their family members. For example, this can lead to a DUI driver hurting themselves or others. The person may also lose their job and/or be unable to drive for up to one year.
If you have been arrested for DUI Causing Damage, you should contact a lawyer for assistance.
One Offense, Two Tickets!
The Basics of Operating Under The Influence
Many drivers accused of a DUI for the first time are confused when they are handed two tickets for what they thought was one offense. In fact, Wisconsin breaks intoxicated driving into two offenses: operating under the influence and operating with a Prohibited Alcohol Concentration (PAC). The BAC (or PAC….same thing) ticket accuses you of driving a vehicle with a blood-alcohol concentration of 0.08 or higher. The OWI ticket accuses you of driving under the influence of an intoxicating substance whether that be alcohol, narcotic drugs or medication. Even if you are convicted of both, you can only be penalized once. The two tickets have the same penalties. But prosecutors like the redundant tickets as it allows them to move forward with one even if your criminal law attorney can disprove the other.
What legal DUI defense strategy has he or she used to win “unwinnable” cases before?
- “Not Operating the Vehicle” – If we can show a jury someone else was operating the vehicle when you intoxicated, this type of defense has been very successful in our record of high not guilty jury results.
- “Not Under The Influence” – If we can show a jury that you may have had some alcohol but did not consume enough to be operating under the influence, again this type of defense has been very successful in our record of high not guilty jury results.
Other Types Of DUI Defenses
- Collateral Attacks – If one or more of your previous convictions was entered without appreciating all you rirights (call us to see if they were) we can get the conviction thrown out for counting purposes, taking an OWI 3rd+ to an OWI 1st.
- Failure to Stop – Law enforcement has to have “an articulable suspicion that crime is afoot” or a known tipster who called in the activity and then observe erratic driving. Unless they can show it, the entire stop may be deemed unconstitutional.
The minimum penalties for a DUI first offense are as follows:
- Fine of $500 – $1,000. License suspension between 8 months and 1 year
- Ignition interlock device of up to a 9 month period on your vehicle
- Mandatory installation of an interlock device on all vehicles (we can decrease the vehicle number to 1) with a bac of .149 or more
The minimum penalties for a DUI second offense are as follows:
- License suspension: At a minimum, you will lose your license for one full year and face restricted driving for two more years.The cost: $1800 in fines and costs
- Jail time: Up to 9 months
- Ignition interlock device: 1 year period on your vehicle
- You cannot reduce the suspension time without doing alcohol treatment.
- Mandatory installation of an interlock device on all vehicles.
- Jail time: up to 9 months
- License revocation: 270 days to one year
- Check our OWI Guideline tab for the county you get the ticket in to find out the normal penalties.
- Prison for at least 3 years. Incarceration for some of the term and extended supervision (now called Parole) for the remainder.
Your Driver’s License
The DOT hearing is completely separate from your drunk driving case. The DOT decides the validity of your driver’s license. The DOT does listen to the state court system (judge’s order) as to how long your license is going to be suspended but determines your driver’s license rule beyond that.
Your Commercial Driver’s License
If you are a CDL driver or have one in the family, it is crucial to know that there are different rules when it comes to DUI’s. A DUI conviction will stay on your record for life.
Two Firsts and a Third After Ten Years Rule
In Wisconsin if there is 10 years or more between your 1st DUI conviction and your 2nd DUI conviction, the State just gives you another OWI 1st, but as soon as you get your 3rd the State counts all your OWIs your entire life.
One Offense Two Tickets
Many drivers accused of such cases for the first time are confused when they are handed two tickets for what they thought was one event. In fact, Wisconsin breaks intoxicated driving into two offenses: operating under the influence and operating with a Prohibited Alcohol Concentration (PAC). A good DUI defense attorney should know this. The PAC or Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) ticket accuses you of driving with a blood-alcohol concentration or blood alcohol content of 0.08 or higher breath or blood test.
The police will accuse you of driving under the influence of an intoxicating substance whether that be alcohol, narcotic drugs or medication. Even if you are convicted of both, you can only be penalized once. The two tickets have the same penalties. But prosecutors like the redundant tickets as it allows them to move forward with one even if we can disprove the other conviction.
THIS IS WHY YOU NEED US!
The representation with a DUI attorney at Mullen, Schlough & Associates S.C. work with people who need help with all OWI defense issues.
Our lawyers and DUI attorneys understand that people who have been charged with a DUIs and gone through a DUI arrest are not necessarily criminals. The great majority of people we represent either suffered a quick lapse in judgment that resulted in a situation getting out of control or were caught in the wrong place at the wrong time.
If you have gone through a DUI arrest, do not hesitate to contact one of Mullen, Schlough & Associates S.C. OWI/DUI lawyers/attorneys near you for a free initial consultation.
It’s important to act quickly when you are charged with an OWI or DUI. The longer you wait to talk with one of our lawyers, the easier it is for evidence and opportunities to disappear and your conviction gets more probable. Remember our lawyers may help you for free so why not call.
Call 1-888-375-3056 toll free 24 Hours a day to schedule your Free Consultation today with one of our best DUI criminal lawyers near me or best DUI attorneys near me either by email, video consultation, phone or in-person.
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We Offer DUI Defense Services In The Following Areas:
- Boating, Snowmobile & ATV DUI
- Drunk Driving Lawyer
- Drug & Medication DUI
- DUI Lawyer
- DUI Causing Damage
- Operating After Revocation
- Underage DUI
- Vehicular Manslaughter DUI
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