James M. Wagman, Attorney at Law
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Do you know your options for getting home after drinking?

Having a few drinks is not necessarily a crime in and of itself. As long as you are of legal age and are consuming responsibly, you should not have any problems with law enforcement. Of course, matters do not always go as planned, and the chance exists that you could end up under the scrutiny of an officer if he or she suspects you of drinking and driving.

Because you want to avoid that scenario at all costs, you probably think ahead and consider your options for getting home. Fortunately, most people in New York have a number of choices for getting a ride safely.

What are your options?

The options may vary depending on your specific area and the time of day, but often, at least one of the following transportation options is available:

  • Having a designated driver: Hopefully, you and your friends make this decision before anyone starts drinking, but if you suddenly find yourself unable to get home by driving yourself, you may ask someone who has abstained from drinking for the evening.
  • Public transportation: Many areas have buses or subways that can help anyone get home at any time of the day. Utilizing these options could save you time and trouble.
  • Rideshare options: These days, most people have Uber or Lyft apps at the ready on their smartphones. It is often easy to queue up a ride to pick you up when you need it most.
  • Car service options: You may even live in an area that offers specific car services for individuals who have been drinking. Exploring this option before a night out could be useful.

Of course, as mentioned, plans do not always work out as intended. You may have designated a driver only to get separated from your friends later. You may have intended to have an Uber pick you up only to end up in a dangerous area or situation that you need to get out of immediately. In such cases, you may feel as if you have no other option but to drive yourself.

What if you get pulled over?

Whether you drove because you did not have much to drink or because you felt unsafe, it is possible for an officer to stop your vehicle. If so, you could end up facing a charge for DWI even though you did not feel impaired or believed that you had to drive to maintain your safety. In either case, you can work to create a defense against the charges in efforts to work toward the best outcome possible.

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James M. Wagman, Attorney at Law

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Catskill, NY 12414

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