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DUI Overview

Florida DUI Law Firm Explains Your Rights

Driving Under the Influence (DUI) charges, commonly known as “drunk driving,” in Florida can have serious consequences that can last a lifetime. That's why it's critical that you seek immediate legal advice if you have been charged with DUI in Clay County and Northeast Florida. You are facing:

  • Hundreds or thousands of dollars in fines
  • The loss of your driver's license
  • Imprisonment

Experienced Florida DUI attorney Mark Sieron of Aguilar & Sieron, P.A., understands what you're going through. A former Florida prosecutor, he has been fighting for the rights of people charged with drunk driving for more than three decades. He understands how the legal system works in Florida and consistently achieves positive results in DUI defense cases.

Understanding Your DUI Charge

Florida's DUI rules and regulations can be extremely complicated, especially if you have never been charged with driving under the influence of alcohol. That's why we created this section on our website devoted to an overview of Florida's DUI laws, tests and more.

In this section, you will also find information about mistakes drivers make when stopped for allegedly driving under the influence of alcohol, mistakes police make and DUI myths. But no matter what the circumstances are surrounding your DUI case, it's important to speak with us as soon as possible.

Here are questions we are most frequently asked about drunk driving charges in Florida.

What is a DUI?

DUI stands for Driving Under the Influence. Most often in Florida, people are charged with driving under the influence of alcohol. DUI can also mean driving under the influence of other controlled substances, like including illegal or prescription drugs.

What's the difference between DWI and DUI?

DWI stands for Driving While Intoxicated. DWI charges don’t exist in Florida because Florida has DUI laws which outlaw "driving under the influence of alcohol or controlled substances to the extent your normal faculties are impaired."

Are Florida's DUI laws different than other states?

Each state has its own DUI laws. A criminal defense injury lawyer who thoroughly understands how the Florida legal system works can help you if you have been charged with DUI in Florida.

What is the legal limit for being impaired while driving in Florida?

In Florida, like in most states, the legal limit for being presumed to be under the influence is 0.08 percent blood alcohol level (BAL) or blood alcohol concentration (BAC). Different rules apply to drivers under 21 and commercial drivers.

Can I appeal my license suspension after a DUI arrest in Florida?

Yes. If you take the breath test and register .08 or above, OR if you refuse to take the breath test, your driving privileges will be suspended. Your attorney can request a hearing to appeal this suspension under certain specific circumstances, but you must do so within 10 days of your arrest.

Should I answer a police officer's questions if I'm stopped for DUI?

No. Be polite with the officer and provide basic information (name and address), but you don’t have to answer any other questions if you are pulled over for suspicion of impaired driving. Anything you say can later be used against you in court and remember that you’re probably being recorded.

Do I have to take a breathalyzer test in Florida?

No, but there are legal consequences for refusing to take a breathalyzer test in Florida. You should refuse to take a breathalyzer test in Florida if you are stopped for suspicion of DUI.

Will I lose my driver's license if I refuse to take a breathalyzer test in Florida?

In most cases, your driver's license will be suspended for 12-18 months if you refuse to take a breathalyzer test in Florida. However, your attorney can appeal this suspension by requesting a review with the Department of Motor Vehicles. You may be able to get your driver's license reinstated sooner.

What is a field sobriety test?

Field sobriety tests are tests sometimes given by police officers at the scene of a traffic stop intended to determine if a driver is drunk. They include a walk-and-turn test, one-leg stand test and horizontal gaze nystagmus (HGN) test, which follows how your eyes track a moving object.

Can I appeal my Florida DUI conviction in Florida?

Yes. If your DUI conviction is not overturned, you could face serious penalties, including fines, jail time and having your driver's license suspended or permanently revoked.

How A Drunk Driving Lawyer Can Help You

Strict deadlines exist when it comes to DUI charges in Florida. If you do not take legal action in certain cases within a certain amount of time, you could potentially forfeit your right to obtain a temporary driver's license or contest the administrative suspension of your driver's license for driving with an unlawful blood alcohol (DUBAL) or refusing to take the breathalyzer test.

Drunk driving cases can be extremely complicated. As an example, arresting officers must follow constitutional procedures, breathalyzers must be maintained properly, and breathalyzer technicians must follow very specific procedures.  People charged with DUI in Florida who try to tackle their case on their own often encounter significant legal obstacles. Even if you know you were not legally impaired, that doesn't guarantee that your charges will be dismissed.

You have too much at stake to try to tackle your DUI charge on your own. Make sure you take your case seriously right from the start. Make sure you contact our law firm and schedule an appointment right now. You can reach us 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.