For most people, a DWI is the most serious charge they’ll face but also one that could have serious consequences. Depending on the circumstances of the arrest, it is possible that you could face harsh penalties and lose your license.
There are many long-term consequences of a DWI, like higher insurance rates, that you have to consider. You could also lose your license, have trouble keeping your job and face other complications.
What should you expect from a first-time DWI?
In New York State, driving while impaired can lead to the loss of your license, the possibility of time in jail and fines. Here are some of the basic penalties that you should know about based on the specific charge:
- Aggravated driving while intoxicated: Up to a year in jail, a license revocation of at least one year and between $1,000 and $2,500 in mandatory fines.
- Driving while intoxicated or driving while impaired by drugs: Between $500 and $1,000 in fines as well as a six-month minimum license revocation and maximum jail term of one year
- Driving while ability impaired by alcohol and drugs: Up to a year in jail, the loss of your license for at least six months and between $500 and $1,000 in fines.
- Driving while ability impaired by alcohol: Between $300 and $500 in fines as well as a license suspension of 90 days and up to 15 days in jail
As you can tell from these penalties, a first-time DWI charge isn’t something to ignore. There are some significant penalties that you could face depending on your exact circumstances.
You deserve the opportunity to defend yourself
Since no two cases are the same, it does make sense to talk to someone about your situation and to learn more about your legal rights. You may decide to build a defense against the charges and to fight against the penalties. You may also want to negotiate for a lesser charge or to seek out alternative sentencing options. These are all things to discuss with an attorney as your case moves forward and you find out more about the charges you’ll be facing.