When you are arrested for driving while intoxicated or driving under the influence in Connecticut, you should be aware there are serious and immediate consequences. Initially, you will face the immediate loss of your driver’s license upon your arrest, and if you fail a breath test or refuse to take one, the time of the suspension could be longer. The first thing you should do upon your arrest is to contact a New Haven DWI/DUI attorney for assistance. This is critical to ensuring that you do not face jail time, steep fines and long-term loss of driving rights.

New Haven DWI/DUI attorney explains the penalties

The initial loss of your driving rights must be battled with the Department of Motor Vehicles in an administrative hearing. This hearing is different from the court hearing for the charges you are facing. Even if the DMV restores your driving rights, it will have no bearing on your court case. This hearing is attended by you, the arresting officer, a DMV official and your New Haven DWI/DUI attorney.

In some cases, the DMV will restore your driving rights. The penalties in Connecticut for DUI/DWI for drivers over the age of 21 are as follows:

  • Refusal to take a breath test – Your refusal to submit to a breathalyzer test can result in the loss of your driving rights for a period of not less than six months. Keep in mind, even if you fail a breath test, your attorney can still fight the results. These tests are notoriously subjective, and oftentimes, the equipment is poorly maintained or calibrated.
  • Breath test failure (low blood alcohol content) – If your BAC result is between .02 and .16, you could be facing a three-month suspension of your driving rights. If you have been previously convicted of DUI, that time could be extended to a period of nine months to two years.
  • Breath test failure (high blood alcohol content) – BAC levels in excess of .16 are the most serious. You could lose your driving rights for as long as four months for a first offense and as long as two and a half years for subsequent offenses. Keep in mind, these penalties are in addition to any jail time, probation or fines you may be facing.

It is also important to note that any time that is imposed by the DMV for a license suspension will not be changed, even if you are subsequently found not guilty, without the intervention of your criminal defense attorney.

Defending against drunk driving charges

You may think that if you are charged with drunk driving and fail a breath test that you cannot possibly be acquitted of DUI charges. This is not the case. As a New Haven DWI/DUI attorney, I have successfully defended people who have failed these tests. Mistakes are made both during arrests and with the maintenance of these machines that often result in charges being filed without sufficient proof.

If you are facing a charge for drunk driving in Connecticut, it is critical that you not risk your freedom and your driving rights. Call Attorney Glenn M. Conway at (203) 828-0985. He is a skilled New Haven DWI/DUI attorney and will work with you from immediately after your arrest through the proceedings with the DMV and final court case.

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