What to know if you’re Arrested for DUI in North Carolina
Drunk driving is a criminal offense in most states, apart from New Jersey and Wisconsin, which means that driving under the influence (DUI) has a penalty that includes not only a fine, but also the suspension of your license, community service, and imprisonment.
In North Carolina, the law forbids you to operate a vehicle if you have a blood alcohol content of .08 or higher. Judges typically determine your sentence by weighing mitigating and aggravating factors following your arrest.
What are Mitigating Factors?
Mitigating factors reduce the sentence of a case because they explain the reason behind the bad behavior. A driver can get the minimum sentence if they have an otherwise clean driving record in North Carolina. If the blood alcohol content barely reached .08 or if the driver’s impairment was due to a lawfully prescribed medication, there is a chance they can get a more lenient punishment.
What are Aggravating Factors?
Aggravating factors, on the other hand, worsen a sentence. These include prior DUI convictions, speeding, driving with a suspended license, and causing serious injury. North Carolina further classifies aggravating factors as “grossly aggravating” and simply, “aggravating.”
The Chances of Jail Time
Since DUI is a criminal offense in North Carolina, some offenders serve jail time. Although you can avoid jail time using bail bonds, it still depends on the seriousness of your case. If you committed a level two punishment, you would have to serve a sentence of seven days up to 12 months and have to pay a maximum $2,000.
For level one punishment under grossly aggravating offenses, you can serve a sentence of between 30 days and 24 months. You also have to pay a penalty of up to $4,000.
When arrested for DUI, it is important to seek the assistance of an attorney, especially if your case is with aggravating factors. Moreover, you can avoid jail time while you wait for your trail with the help of bail guarantors and agencies.