OUI Laws in Maine
Defense Attorney Serving Portland, Biddeford, Augusta, Saco and Bangor
OUI laws in Maine strictly state, that the more prior convictions that you have, the more serious your penalties will be. When a driver is arrested for suspicion of OUI or DUI, police will look at their prior arrest record to see if they have been convicted for OUI in the past. In Maine, police look back ten years. If you have been convicted of multiple OUI offenses during that period, you will face a Class C charge.
An OUI charge will result if you are stopped by police and they have a reasonable suspicion that you are under the influence of drugs or alcohol. The legal limit for alcohol in a driver's system in Maine is .08% for adults over 21. There is no limit for drug intoxication and any amount found in your body can result in an OUI charge.
Maine OUI Repeat Offender Penalties
The terms of an OUI offense are stated under Title 29-A, §2411. To legally drive after drinking in the state, you must be at least 21. For those under this age, any BAC level is illegal as defined by the Zero Tolerance Law. For those 21 or older, a BAC level must be below .08% to legally operate a vehicle. If an officer suspects that a driver has been drinking they can choose to pull them over and evaluate them, including the use of Field Sobriety Testing. Drinking and driving arrests are made every day and those convicted will face varying penalties that are dependent on the circumstances of their case. When you are charged with a DUI, especially if it is a 2nd, 3rd or 4th DUI, it is vital to call an OUI defense lawyer right away. A conviction for a fourth offense OUI can lead to the following consequences:
- Minimum jail time of 6 months
- Eight years of license suspension
- Eight years of suspension of right to register a motor vehicle
- Fines of at least $2,100
- Rehabilitation programs
- Forced installation of an ignition Interlock device (IID)
- Vehicle confiscation
What Other Factors Affect an OUI Sentence?
The more OUIs that you are convicted of, the steeper the penalties and the more important it is to have an experienced Maine criminal defense lawyer at your side. A first conviction can lead to 150 day license suspension, a fine and may not involve jail time, depending on the particular circumstances of the offense. After this, any further convictions will result in severe increases in penalties. A second, third and fourth conviction can cause significant repercussions, especially when any aggravating factors are involved. Aggravating factors (above and beyond the fact that you have prior convictions for DUI offenses) in the state include high speeds of 30 mph or more over the legal limit, driving with an individual under 21 years of age, a BAC level of .15% or more or attempting to elude a police officer. An aggravating factor in a first offense can lead a person to face a mandatory minimum period of incarceration of 48 hours. A fourth offense can result in a prison sentence of up to five years, probation and a fine of $5,000.
Sobriety Test Refusal
Drivers that refuse to submit to testing can face an additional license suspension of 275 days, which will be imposed by the Maine Bureau of Motor Vehicles and run consecutive to any suspension imposed by the court. When another OUI offense occurred within a ten year period, those found guilty will lose the ability to register a motor vehicle, jail time of at least seven days, three years of license suspension and a fine of at least $700. There are ways to defend against the evidence that police bring against suspects and our firm has experience fighting to protect the freedom of our clients.
In addition to the steep penalties for a multiple DUI conviction, you may be charged with a felony DUI. Felonies require stricter sentences and also carry the stigma of felony criminal convictions. You may be passed over for job or educational opportunities because of a felony on your record. Even if you are found guilty, an experienced attorney can push for lighter sentencing or help you get an ignition interlock device (IID) installed in your car so you can get your license back as soon as possible.
Causing an accident because you are impaired, is a sure why to face maximum sentences. After a fatal car accident, police are required to check the BAC of all drivers involved. If you are found to be over the legal limit, you could face vehicular homicide charges as well as a Class "C" OUI offense.
Maine OUI Attorney
Our Maine criminal defense lawyers strive to get you the results you want. There are many different defenses that can be used to fight your charges. You should never plead ‘guilty' to a DUI charge, especially if you have prior convictions on your record. Attorney William Bly believes in giving his clients the best legal care possible. He is a five star rated Maine criminal defense lawyer who works with clients just like you everyday. Attorney Bly has dedicated his practice to criminal defense because he knows that individuals deserve experienced legal assistance, even when they've made a mistake.
If you have been charged in Maine with Driving Under the Influence, call us now!