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Auto Insurance Laws: Can DUI Misdemeanor Leads To Felony?

DUI can be simply defined as driving a car after ingesting alcohol or any controlled intoxicating drug. The set limit for blood alcohol concentration when it comes to DUIs is different for each state but most have it at 0.08 percent. The consequences of being arrested with a blood alcohol level exceeding the one set by the state are dire and vary from state to state. The common thing is that the Auto Insurance Laws in all states vehemently outlaw intoxicated driving. Driving Under the influence in most states is viewed as a misdemeanor but it can also be classified as a felony. The definition of a felony according to the federal law is any offense that can result in someone being arrested for more than a year or that is punishable by death. A misdemeanor on the other hand is an offense that is punishable by an incarceration of one year at the most.

Whenever an offense moves from being a misdemeanor to a felony, there must be serious allegations to confront. According to the Auto Insurance Laws, a DUI can only move from a misdemeanor to a felony if it is a repeat offence or if there was a severe physical injury or death that occurred as a result of an accident caused by a drunken driver. This is a very serious crime and most states do not take this lightly. An individual can easily be charged with reckless homicide which carries a very severe sentence.

Reckless homicide means that the individual driving the vehicle caused someone to lose their life as a result of them being careless on the road. The difference between a DUI being classified as a misdemeanor or a felony varies from state to state.  States like New York take DUIs very seriously and may classify a DUI as a felony if the offender has a second conviction on the same crime. On the other hand, in more lenient states like Georgia, a DUI is classified as a felony if the offender has a fourth conviction of a DUI. These laws may be different but they still preach the same virtues of no tolerance to DUIs.

It is important to know what different states classify as a misdemeanor or felony when it comes to DUIs. In states like Arizona and Arkansas, a DUI becomes a felony when the offender commits a third and fourth DUI offense when there are children under the age of 15 in the vehicle and is involved in an accident. In California and Colorado anyone committing a DUI for a third time will be charged with a DUI Felony on the fourth arrest in a span of ten consecutive years. In addition to this anyone who causes physical injury or death as a result of a DUI accident will also be charged with a DUI Felony.

More information on the other states is available online. To know more about them, enter your area Zip to see what your state has to say about DUI misdemeanors and felonies.

What Auto Insurance Laws Has To Say About Recidivism In The US

For a long time, private organizations alongside legislators have been fighting against drunken driving. Their major fight has been against repeat offenders or the act of recidivism. Recidivism refers to offenders who have been arrested time and again for the same offence and in this case DUI. Auto Insurance Laws are indeed strict on DUI but have made little headway in the fight against recidivism. Tougher penalties and punishments have been put in place but most seem to punish first time offenders as harshly as repeat offenders.  This has been an issue that many in society find unfair since most first time offenders just had a slip in judgment while repeat offenders are more often than not alcoholics.

Argument is rife that persons with recidivism can benefit more from mandatory rehabilitation than from large fines. Research done by the DMV states that, DUI offenders with low blood alcohol concentration are at a higher risk of falling into recidivism than those with higher concentrations. This is because low blood alcohol concentration means lower fines and fees that may otherwise not serve as a good enough lessons making the individual highly likely to repeat the offense again. This therefore makes them very risky on the roads. As a result, the research by the DMV concluded that an individual with a short history of multiple traffic violations is a clear indication of recidivism.

Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) have in the recent past pushed legislation to use technology in the fight against drunk driving. This heralded the introduction of the ignition interlocking device which has so far been the biggest achievement yet. The device works by restricting ignition of the vehicle until the driver provides a breath sample by blowing into the device. The blood alcohol concentration restriction configured onto the device is set at 0.02 percent. If the concentration of alcohol in the individual’s breath is at or above the set limit, it restricts the vehicle from starting. If you need to go somewhere and your vehicle does not start you will be forced to look for other means of travel. That in a nutshell is the theory behind the invention of this device.

The intoxicated driver will be forced to opt for public means to get to where he or she wants to go or have a friend take over and drive him or her. The ignition interlock device has now been introduced as part of Auto Insurance Law. This means that offenders are ordered by the court to have their vehicles fitted with the device to avoid repeat offences. If the offender is a member of a family, the law will require that all the vehicles in the household be fitted with the gadget. This is just an additional safety measure to ensure that the offender does not use another family member’s vehicle to repeat the offense.

All these expenses are extended to the offender, thus making recidivism a very expensive venture. To learn more on this, enter your Zip in the slot provided at the start of the page.

DMV’s Take On DWI And DUI In America

According to the DMV, the number one cause of traffic accidents and deaths on the roads is due to DWI and DUI. In some states like Texas, research has shown that roughly 2,000 people lose their lives as a result of accidents involving intoxicated drivers. Such statistics have demanded DMV to find ways of reducing or completely annihilating intoxicated driving. Over the years, a number of private organizations have risen to assist in this particular fight.

Research done by different companies came to a consensus in agreeing that the best way to do this is by placing a limit on the blood alcohol concentration that a driver is allowed to have when on the road. These findings have been helping legislatures come up with laws that are well detailed in handling DWI and DUI. The laws were passed all over the states with each setting its own limit for blood alcohol concentration. States that are strict with DUI laws like California and Texas set their maximum blood alcohol concentration at 0.08 percent. Other states may have lower or higher limits but the point is still the same in order to reduce cases of DWI and DUI. Anyone found to be driving with a blood alcohol concentration level higher than what has been set by their state is liable to answer to charges of DUI.

DWI and DUI have been found to be particularly prevalent in young drivers. This is because of their young age, inexperienced driving and utter carelessness exercised by persons in this age group. For this reason, they are considered a high insurance risk and therefore have to pay high premiums for their auto insurance. Having a DWI or DUI conviction in your driving history has serious and far reaching effects. First of all, since it is a crime that is disregarded by the society, one may find it hard to get a job for as long as the DUI offense is still in their records.

This is because it is seen as a stupid avoidable offense that makes you look irresponsible and un-employable. Secondly, your driver’s license is suspended which means that you have to get a lift from others or opt for public transport. In order to determine a suspect’s blood alcohol level, police officers in the field use a breathalyzer. The device works by obtaining a breath sample from the driver in order to analyze the alcohol content in their blood. According to the law, one has the right to turn down the test but this will only make you look guilty in court plus your driver’s license will be immediately suspended.

The DMV has in recent years introduced the use of the ignition interlocking device. This device is usually prescribed for repeat offenders. It uses the same principle as a breathalyzer only that it stops you from driving your car if you are intoxicated to some extent. The device has recently been passed into the law and many states are using it to curb repeat DUI offenders. For more information on the DMV and DUIs, enter your Zip at the beginning of this page.

Point System: The Role Of DMV In DWI And DUI

Reckless driving and accidents have been there for as long as people have been driving. It is known that every piece of new technology can be used for good as well as bad. Reckless and intoxicated drivers have cost many people their lives or livelihoods over the years and it is the job of the DMV to keep these numbers to a minimum. Among the solutions that the DMV came up with is the Point System. This system helps in tracking drivers who are reckless on the roads whereby a certain set of points are added to a driver’s record every time he or she commits a traffic infraction. These points are constantly added to a driver’s record and an accumulation of these points could lead to indictment.

AutoInsuranceOn indictment, the said driver will have their license suspended. In addition to this, the individual’s auto insurance premiums are set to rise since auto insurance firms have access to one’s driving records as their way of determining the level of risk that you pose. Since this information on the accumulation of points is not accessible to the public, it made people extra observant of traffic laws since you never know when your points have reached the level of indictment. In order to insist on adherence of traffic rules and regulations, the law imposed fines on people with accumulated points. For some people with numerous points, they had to form a payment plan to settle the fines and some even ran for up to 3 years.

These high fines were the biggest deterrent for reckless driving. Some states like Texas have a conviction centered surcharge where one can pay the fines imposed by the court for up to three years. If you are involved in an accident that either caused a fatality or physical injury due to DWI or DUI, you may face charges of intoxicated manslaughter or assault. In such a grievous case the, Point System is set aside and another system comes into play.

The penalties and fees that the court will require you to recompense are set as:

* A court endorsed AA or counseling program

* Legal fees for handling the case

* An interim driving permit or fees for restoration of your driver’s license

* If you are in a state that recognizes the Ignition interlocking device, you will be required to pay for its installation.

* And lastly, the additional auto insurance premiums and deductibles to compensate for the damages

The point system penalties in addition to the above fees are very costly and serve as a lesson to anyone unlucky enough to be arrested on DWI or DUI. The levies on DUI charges depend on the state laws and if the individual is a first time or a repeat offender. In most cases, repeat offenders or persons with recidivism are found to be either alcoholics or drug addicts. Such persons are usually required to attend either AA programs or be admitted into drug rehab centers since the additional fines and penalties do not help them much. For help on this, enter your Zip at the top of this page top find the relevant assistance.

Different Status On Second DUI Charge According To The DMV

In each state, there are different laws regarding DUIs. First time offenders are treated differently from second and repeat offenders depending on the circumstances surrounding their arrest. It is always advisable to get the right information concerning what your state outlines as measures to handle DUIs. You have to check with your local DMV.

In this article, we shall dwell on a few states and detail which provide for DUI classes for second time offenders or not. Most states provide alcohol and drug rehabilitation for such offenders as a measure to pass education on the subject instead of just punishing the offenders. Some states however leave the discretion of such matters to the judge handling the case. States like Alabama, Connecticut, Florida, Hawaii, Illinois, Louisiana and many others do not provide well documented means of dealing with DUI rehabilitation.

A few of the states that provide them are the following:

Alaska – if the court does not dictate on the DUI programs to be taken, the Alcohol Safety Awareness Program will have information on which classes to take.

Arkansas – the Alcohol Safety Education Program in the state lasts more than 10 hours but the court may suggest that you different program that is similar o the one mentioned.

California – Your level of blood alcohol concentration in this state will dictate how long you will be required by the court to attend drug rehabilitation classes. Usually they may last as long as 9 months.

Georgia – An assessment carried out during the risk education program that lasts roughly an hour will dictate whether you should have an intervention.

Kansas – In this state, the discretion on the length of time to be spent by the offender in rehabilitation is left solely to the courts.

New Hampshire – The time to be spent during rehabilitation is dependent on the program chosen but it usually lasts between 1 to 28 days.

New Mexico – The number of days spent in rehabilitation depends on if the offender will be doing an inpatient or outpatient program. Inpatients will serve a minimum of 28 days while outpatient is a minimum of 90 days. In New Hampshire however, the offender will have to attend the program prescribed by the court for a period not less than 16 weeks.

Pennsylvania – The Alcohol Safety Program in this state provides for an online program that should be completed in 30 days. The program lasts roughly 12 hours though you are still required to attend a drug treatment class.

Rhode Island – The court requires you to enroll into the Rhode Island Community College for drug assessment. After that you are required to either join a DUI driving school or a drug treatment program.

These are just but a few states that have drug rehabilitation as their way of dealing with DUIs. They have so far made good progress as compared to imposing hefty fines on offenders. To know about what is offered in other states enter your area’s Zip code and press enter. A world of information awaits you at the touch of a button.

The Truth About SR-22 Auto Insurance Laws In USA

The SR-22 auto insurance cover is a special cover that is meant for drivers who cause accidents while intoxicated. This is not put in place to show laxity in terms of Auto Insurance Laws dealing with DUIs but to act as an option in the event that the driver’s livelihood is dependent on driving. The SR-22 insurance cover is used by persons whose driver’s licenses have been suspended in the event of an accident that they were found to be driving drunk. The DMV in America is the governing body when it comes to auto related issues. The DMV can suspend a driver’s license for a number of reasons. Several traffic infractions to some extent can lead to your license being suspended. For this reason, the SR-22 policy was put in place to rectify or offer an alternative to such a situation.

The purpose of auto insurance is to show proof of liability in the event of an accident. The SR-22 insurance policy serves the same purpose only for a different situation. Once an individual’s license is suspended, for them to be able to drive on the road again, they must obtain an SR-22 insurance cover from the DMV as proof of liability in the event of an accident. Other circumstance that the SR-22 insurance cover can be applicable is when one is involved in an accident when uninsured. In such an event, the DMV requires that one has an SR-22 cover that spans from between 3 to 5 years. This is usually referred to as the SR-22 filing period. The rules and regulations however, may be different in every state.

The main thing to put in mind is that the gravity of the offense dictates the length of the SR-22 filing period. This means that the filing period in extreme cases may extend to more than 5 years as set by the DMV.  However, much the SR-22 insurance policy may help in such stringent circumstances and it also does not come cheap. Its premiums are much higher than conventional auto insurance, but it is probably for the right reasons. Once the SR-22 reaches its maturity the premiums for the said individual may revert to normal.  However, this is all dependent on if the driver did not have any traffic infractions during the span of the SR-22 filing period. The DMV will be informed if for any reason the SR-22 lapses before running its full filing period. They will investigate the reason behind the lapse and will decide if the driver should face stiffer penalties or just wait until the expiry of the period which the driver’s license was suspended. An SR-26 is issued once the SR-22 reaches its full term or is cancelled for any reason.

However, not all states in America have included the SR-22 into their Auto Insurance Laws so do not automatically assume that you can obtain it once your license is expired. To check if you have access to SR-22 cover from your area, enter your Zip at the beginning of this web page.

Myths and Facts That Surrounds Cheap Car Insurance And DUIs In US

Myths are a common occurrence in culture all over the world. They are basically stories without any scientific or research based findings to support their claims. The same goes for Cheap Car Insurance and DWI or DUIs. One thing however is for sure, once you have a DUI arrest in your driving history, your chances of getting Cheap Car Insurance grow slimmer. All insurance companies rely on an individual’s driving history in determining the rate of insurance to charge you. Many myths however mainly center on dealing with DWI and DUIs. We shall go through some in this article and approve or disapprove them.

1. A breathalyzer has accurate results.

Just like any other gadget built by man, a breathalyzer is not perfect. Breathalyzers usually have an acceptable margin of error of up to 30 percent. This is evident in the many articles written on the subject and the many court cases overturned due to the inaccuracy of the results. It is within your rights, according to the sixth amendment to demand that your case on a DUI be heard before a grand jury. This is because a DUI case based solely on the evidence of a breathalyzer test can provide a margin of reasonable doubt for you to be exonerated. Furthermore, the use of the breathalyzer is exclusively up to the police officer. This means that if there is an ounce of malice in the officer against the driver, the officer can easily doctor the results. This in truth dismisses this particular claim as being just a myth and nothing more.

2. Restraint from drinking excuses you from being arrested on DWI or DUI

One thing to keep in mind when it comes to this myth is that DWI or DUI is not restricted to alcohol only. DWI or DUI refers to any foreign ingested material that can hamper you from driving effectively. It covers everything from alcohol, hard drugs and even some prescription medicines that are not taken properly. Scientists have proven that humans produce naturally generated alcohol in the body in a process called endogenous ethanol production. This means that you can test positive for alcohol without having taken any in the first place. In rare cases, the body may abnormally produce high levels of alcohol causing someone to be wrongfully accused of being intoxicated. Basically this myth is not true.

3. Having alcohol in your breath shows that you are intoxicated

Numerous researches have been done on DWI and DUI and one thing came out as evident, the scent of alcohol in someone’s breath has no direct relation on an individual’s blood alcohol concentration.  The scent of alcohol in your breath is actually a byproduct of a certain element found in liquor. This same component is also common in non alcoholic drinks that are made out of barley. This is to say that you taking liquor and another taking non alcoholic beer have the same scent of breath.

There are numerous other myths circulating on this particular issue. In order to know the truth and not the unconfirmed myths enter your area Zip in the space provided at the top of this page to know the difference.

How To Use The Ignition Interlock Device According To The DMV

DUIs have been an issue in America for many years to a point that private organizations have come to assist in helping to control this vice. To some level, drunken driving has become a scourge due to the number of lives it has affected. Drunken drivers have caused permanent physical injuries and deaths to many people. For this reason, the law has been very strict in trying to curb drunken driving especially repeat offenders. With the use of technology in many aspects of life, the DMV also devised a method to control DUIs using technology.

A piece of technological ingenuity brought about the ignition interlocking device. The ignition interlock device works by restricting ignition of a vehicle if a driver is intoxicated. Before one starts a vehicle fitted with the device, he or she is required to provide a breath sample by blowing into the device. Just like a breathalyzer, it analyzes the sample and gives out results in terms of percentage of concentration of alcohol in the blood. If the blood alcohol concentration is above the set limit of the device, it will restrict the vehicle from starting.

Different states have different set limits of blood alcohol concentration according to their laws. To further hinder the driver from intoxicating themselves when on the road, the device randomly requests for another sample whine one is driving. On this request, the driver must produce another sample or the device will initiate a log of the event. These logs are subject to analysis by the police during random stops. The logs are randomly reviewed every 30 to 90 days.

Once the log is created the driver will receive a warning message followed by an alarm that will go on until the car stops and its engine turned off. Despite the ignition interlocking technology being designed to stop the vehicle, it does not do so immediately lest the driver causes an accident from their car going off in the middle of a busy highway. This device is a success story in the fight against DUIs and has seen considerable progress.

The ignition interlocking device was a suggestion by Mothers Against drunk Driving which has since the 80s been fighting against DUIs. As a result of their valiant efforts, the ignition interlocking device was passed into law in 2009. Persons charged with DUIs are required to have their vehicles fitted with this device as a measure to reduce recidivism. However not all states have incorporated the law but most with strict DUI laws like California have. Depending on the circumstance surrounding the arrest, a DUI offender is required to have the device installed in their vehicles for up to 3 years since their conviction.

This device does not come cheap and it is the offender who has to foot the bill for its installation. This means that if for whatever reason the driver decides not to install the device on their vehicle, they will have no other option but to rely on public transportation to take them from place to place until the expiry of the suspension of their driver’s license.

There is still a lot of information available on the internet concerning the ignition interlocking device. Enter your Zip above to view this information and more.

How A DUI Charge Can Be Demolished As Stated By The DMV

In some states, the law recognizes the Expungement Law when it comes to DUI charges. Also known as the sealing law, it specifically refers to completely obliterating a conviction from someone’s criminal history. The DMV recognizes this in some states and in some states, it does not. Most people desire to have their DUI convictions expunged usually have a job on the line in relation to this. Most employers require a background check to be done prior to them employing someone. More and more companies require this to be done even if the job the applicants are applying for do not involve driving. If you want a DUI conviction removed from your driving history you must hire a qualified DUI attorney.

AutoInsuranceWhenever one is applying for a job, they are required to fill out a questionnaire about ones past. Once your slate is wiped clean, you will not be required to answer yes under the question of if you have ever been convicted of a crime.  However, the expungement law has its limits. If by chance you are lucky and have your initial DUI charge obliterated from your driving history, a repeat of the crime will be arraigned in court as a second offense. This means that all the penalties and punishments accorded to a repeat offender will be passed on to you despite your previous crime being expunged. A qualified DUI attorney will advise you on this when taking up your case for expungement of your DUI.

Expungement Law does not provide for the complete removal of your DUI from your driving history. Other branches of the law like courts and law enforcement officers can still access these records but any other entity like a potential employer, may not be able to. In essence, the DUI record is actually sealed from the public and not deleted completely. Not all states have the Expungement law, but this is not to say that the states that do are in any way lenient when it comes to DUIs. It is only to assist in background checks.

Anyone looking to have their DUI record expunged, they must first check to see if their state allows for it in the first place.  States that provide for Expungement Law have different statutes concerning the law. They also have different statutes on who is eligible for expungement and who is not.  A DUI charge hangs over your head for a long time however much you may try to correct your life after that. In order to be eligible for expungement, you must meet a certain set of conditions which can only be explained well by a qualified DUI attorney. DUI expungement will only benefit someone if his or her reputation is on the line as a result of the DUI conviction.

If you are in a situation that calls for your DUI conviction to be erased from your driving history, enter your Zip code at the start of the page and we can tell you if your state recognizes the Expungement Law.

Ways To Deal With First Time DUI Offence According To Auto Insurance Laws In America

Auto Insurance Laws dictate that once you are arrested on suspicion of DWI or DUI, your driver’s license is immediately suspended. The length of the suspension of your license is left to the courts to decide after weighing the circumstances surrounding your arrest. Whether you are a first time offender or not, there are no special privileges accorded to first time offenders. Such strict measures are put in place to permanently deter first time offenders from repeating the DUI felonies again. In most states, the law clearly states that an intoxicated person is one whose blood alcohol concentration is above the limit set by the state or someone who has little or no control over their mental senses as a result of consumption of alcohol or any controlled substances. Each state has its own set limit according to its law when it comes to blood alcohol concentration and DUIs.

The discretion of whether to stop a driver for DUI or not is left to the judgment of the police officer in the field. Before stopping you to investigate for drunken driving, the police officer has to make a judgment call on whether you are driving recklessly or not. Once the officer stops you, he or she will have to collect sufficient evidence from you to prove that you were driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. The evidence collected includes breath, blood samples as well as physical tests to gauge your level of intoxication. During commission of these tests, the police officer’s car has a dashboard camera that records you going through the drills that they have suggested and can be presented in court as additional evidence. In some cases, the individual may be too intoxicated to perform these physical tests. If this is the case, the officer will testify as to why they were unable to run the physical tests in the field and must have the footage from his car to prove so.

On conviction of DWI or DUI, depending on the gravity of the offence, you may be put under probation or may have to serve a jail term according to your charges. Auto Insurance Laws in America basically state that first time offenders can be put under probation for 2 years plus additional fines and fees may be attached to it. As stated earlier, each state has its own laws regarding DUIs. The difference comes in when it is sentencing time. In some states, first time offenders may walk away with a slap on the wrist or a small fine while stricter states may decide to make an example out of you. Despite the court mandated fines and penalties, you will also have to pay for your legal fees plus the additional premiums that will be added to your auto insurance policy after you are done with the case.

Once you have been arrested once for this offence, it sets a bad image for you to your insurer and it will take a while for you to go back to your previous premiums. For more information about car insurance policy, all you need to do is enter your Zip above and we will get you the information you need.