According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, approximately 1.5 million people are arrested on impaired driving charges every year in the United States. The circumstances that lead to the charges vary, but it is not uncommon for drivers to find themselves facing such a serious offense. A DUI can be frightening and life-altering, especially if it is your first run-in with the criminal justice system.
It is natural to be worried and full of questions.
“Will I be able to drive again?”
“For how long is my license suspended?”
“How can I provide for my family if I cannot get to work”?
“How much is this going to cost me?”
During this stressful time, an experienced law firm can help answer such questions. It is our job at Gilman Law, P.C., to protect you and to provide answers to all of your questions.
At Gilman Law, P.C., our team represents those who have been charged with OUI or DUI offenses throughout Massachusetts. We will help you understand the process, explore all possible options, and guide you on the best path forward. We will do everything possible to fight for your rights.
From the moment you see those flashing lights in your rearview mirror, your whole life can change with simply a flick of the switch. Contact us today for a free consultation. During a consultation you can learn more about who we are, what we do, and how we can help you deal with Massachusetts OUI charges and restore your driving privileges.
Understanding Massachusetts "Operating Under the Influence" Laws
While alcohol and drugs may affect people differently based on many factors including gender, weight, and rate of ingestion, every state in the U.S. has its own laws to address issues related to who can operate a vehicle while impaired.
In Massachusetts, impaired driving laws fall under two categories:
- OUI Liquor. In the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, state law sets the legal limit for blood alcohol content (BAC) at .08%. If a person is arrested and submit to a chemical breath test he/she will be charged with an OUI if their BAC is found to be .06% or higher. With a BAC of .06% or higher, a driver will be arrested for an OUI under a “per se” violation. One does not need to be intoxicated to be arrested and charged with an OUI – simply a BAC over the legal limit is enough. If a person is arrested and refuses to submit to a breathalyzer he/she can still be charged under Massachusetts impaired driving laws.
OUI Drugs. There are no set guidelines for determining what constitutes drug impairment, but chemical and observational tests are used to determine the type and amount of drugs in a driver's system, as well as the level of impairment. A drug-related OUI charge can stem from illegal drug use or even from abuse of legal prescriptions.
Whether this is your first offense or your sixth offense, there are two options. Fight the case or accept the facts of the case as is. The outcome and the risks associated with each of these choices depends in part on the number of prior OUI convictions.
- FIRST OFFENSE OUI
- SECOND OFFENSE OUI
- THIRD OFFENSE OUI
- FOURTH OFFENSE OUI & BEYOND
- OUT OF STATE OUI/DUI OFFENSES
- OUI CHECKPOINTS AND OUI ARRESTS
Call Gilman Law today at 978-592-1836, 24/7, to speak directly to Attorney Gilman and his team or contact us online for a free consultation.
Common Penalties for OUI Convictions in Massachusetts
The consequences of an OUI conviction can be far-reaching for both you and your family. One little mistake or misunderstanding may change your whole life and force you to face serious repercussions. An experienced OUI attorney can help minimize such outcomes, but it is important to take immediate action to protect your right.
Although penalties are based on the unique circumstances of each specific case, some common punishments include:
- License suspension.
- Driver alcohol-education classes.
- Ignition interlock installation.
In addition to legal complications, many drivers will also experience significant stresses in their personal and professional lives. An OUI conviction can be embarrassing, and, even more seriously, it may lead to:
- Loss of employment.
- Loss of professional licensure.
- Increased insurance premiums.
- Immigration issues.
- Strained family relationships.
By simply operating a vehicle, every operator of a motor vehicle in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts has already consented to provide either a breath sample or a blood sample. However, even though every driver has the right to refuse a chemical test, a refusal will result in an immediate suspension a driver's license. A license suspension due to such a refusal may last anywhere from six months to a lifetime.
A suspension for refusing to take a breath test or undergo a blood test can be appealed through the Registry of Motor Vehicles within 15 days of arrest. But it is important to note that even if your OUI charges are dismissed or even if you are found not guilty, it is still necessary to immediately file a motion with the court to have your driving privileges reinstated. Regardless of the outcome, it may be possible to retain some driving rights.
An Experienced OUI-DUI Attorney Can Help Protect Your Rights and Your Future
With so much at stake, it is critical to have an experienced legal team fighting for you. Attorneys Matthew Gilman and Julie Gaudreau work tirelessly to help their clients minimize the negative consequences of OUIs. We understand how to win in court and we also know the nuts and bolts about how the Registry of Motor Vehicles operates, so we are ready to anticipate what may occur and to prepare a complete and compelling case. Attorney Gilman has been on both sides of the impaired driving laws as an RMV hearings officer and as a DUI lawyer for clients just like you. We know what it takes to be successful in court, and we can provide the guidance and knowledge that you need now.