If you plan on drinking, it is important to know the laws in your state and the legal limit. In North Carolina, the legal limit for alcohol is 0.08%. This means that if your blood alcohol concentration (BAC) is 0.08% or higher, you are considered to be over the legal limit and can be charged with Driving While Impaired (DWI ) – also commonly known as Driving Under the Influence or a DUI.
In North Carolina, Driving While Impaired is a serious offense. Knowing and abiding by the legal limit is important to ensure that you stay safe and avoid legal trouble. In this article, we will discuss North Carolina’s alcohol laws, including the legal limit and the consequences of driving while over the limit.
When is a Driver Legally Drunk in North Carolina?
In North Carolina, the legal limit for a driver’s blood alcohol concentration (BAC) is 0.08%. This means that any driver with a BAC of 0.08% or higher is considered legally drunk and can be charged with a DUI or DWI. The legal limit is even lower for commercial drivers in North Carolina, who are not allowed to have an alcohol concentration of greater than 0.04%.
Drivers who are under 21 years old are not allowed to have any measurable amount of alcohol in their system. It is important to remember that the legal limits may vary depending on the situation, so it is best to consult with an attorney if you have any questions about when a driver is considered legally drunk in North Carolina.
Sentencing Procedures for DWI in North Carolina
Sentencing procedures for DWI offenders differ depending on the nature of the offense. The offender’s Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) level is usually taken into consideration when determining a sentence, as well as any aggravating or mitigating factors. Aggravating factors can include a prior DWI conviction, driving with an underage passenger, or impairment due to drugs in addition to alcohol, while mitigating factors can include having a relatively low BAC reading and no prior offenses.
Depending on the number of aggravating factors present – either one or two grossly aggravating factors – the offender may be sentenced to Level Five punishment, which is the most severe type of punishment available under North Carolina’s DWI laws. This could involve prison time and/or community service, followed by revocation of the offender’s license and/or suspension of their commercial driver’s license. An ignition interlock device may also be installed in some cases.
Penalties for underage offenders are more severe and may result in a longer period of revocation. Sentences will vary according to individual circumstances but are generally intended to keep drivers safe and deter future DWI offenses.
Long-term Consequences of a DWI Conviction
A DWI conviction can have long-term consequences that extend far beyond the fines and jail time associated with a conviction. For example, a DWI conviction can stay on your criminal record for years, making it difficult to find employment or housing opportunities.
A DWI can also result in the suspension of your license, leading to difficulties when commuting to work or school.
In addition, insurance companies may increase premiums for those convicted of a DWI, increasing the financial burden of such convictions. A DWI conviction may make it difficult to obtain certain professional licenses or permits that are necessary for certain careers. As such, potential employers may decide not to hire you if they discover a past DWI conviction. For all these reasons, it is important to take steps to avoid getting convicted of a DWI in the first place.
Reasons to Hire a DWI Lawyer
Hiring a DWI lawyer can be a wise decision if you have been charged with driving while intoxicated. A DWI lawyer is an experienced attorney who understands the intricacies of drunk driving laws and can help you protect your rights during the process. They will know how to challenge any evidence presented against you, negotiate reduced charges or sentences, and may even be able to get your case dismissed.
Having a DWI lawyer on your side can provide you with peace of mind that your case is being handled correctly, as they are trained in dealing with all aspects of this type of charge. They are familiar with court proceedings, so they can assist in making sure that you are rigorously defended.
Contact a North Carolina DWI Lawyer
If you have been charged with a DWI, it is important to hire a knowledgeable DWI lawyer right away to help you navigate the complex legal system and avoid these harsh sentences and penalties. Contact the Law Office of Dewey P. Brinkley at (919) 832-0307 or by using the online form.