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Explaining OUI Law: Per Se Rule and Zero Tolerance Policy

In the state of Maine, very specific laws have rule over what happens to those drivers who are charged with operating a vehicle under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol. This includes all types of motor vehicles, from tractor-trailers to boats and SUVs to motorcycles. It also includes all categories of drugs, from illegal street drugs to prescription medications and even over-the-counter medicines.

Per Se Rule

According to legal dictionaries, ‘per se' in this case is a Latin phrase that refers to actions, behavior, or charges that do not require other circumstances in order to be proven. The Per Se Rule as it relates to OUI indicates that a driver who is over the legal BAC limit of .08% is guilty of OUI. BAC is the common acronym for blood alcohol concentration, or how much alcohol is detectable in your blood at a given time.

The application of the Per Se Rule in Maine has made it much easier for the prosecution to get a conviction in this state. Put simply, you will likely be found guilty of OUI if it can be proven that your BAC was above the legal limit and the machine that measured your BAC was functioning within normal parameters. This is why it is so important to have a professional attorney fighting for your rights!

Zero Tolerance Policy

Maine's Zero Tolerance Policy refers to the state's dedication to eliminating underage drinking, especially in the arena of operating a vehicle. Although the state legal limit is the U.S. standard of .08%, this only applies to drivers/passengers who are at least 21 years old at the time of arrest. Any younger than 21, and the legal limit is zero, literally. Absolutely no alcohol intake for minors, and those who are convicted of OUI while underage face stricter and harsher penalties.

Most states in the U.S. today have adopted Zero Tolerance-style laws and statutes to protect teens from this tragic cause of death, injury, and property damage. It is just one small step in the fight to eradicate underage drinking forever.

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