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How to Ensure Your First-Time DUI in Tennessee Is Your Last DUI

Posted on in DUI/DWI

Campbell County criminal law attorney DUI

A first-time DUI (driving under the influence) is a very serious charge even though it is the first offense. Tennessee takes all DUI very seriously; therefore, even first-time DUI carries with it severe consequences, some on par with other similar charges of higher degrees. However, the judicial system can be somewhat forgiving, especially if you have a talented, knowledgeable, and experienced criminal defense lawyer by your side. First, you must realize the consequences, then you can consider what to do if charged so that this never happens again.

Consequences of First-Time DUI in Tennessee

While it might only be your first time receiving a DUI charge, if convicted, you could face relatively severe penalties, including the following punishments:

  • The law in Tennessee states that even a first-time DUI offender must be in jail for at least two days if he or she is convicted. Depending on the circumstances of the case, you might face up to 11 months and 29 days of being incarcerated.

  • Probation may be part of your sentencing.  

  • Fines for a first-time DUI offense can be as high as $1,500.

  • Your driver’s license could be revoked for one year, in tandem with the other penalties.

  • You might have restrictions on your driver’s license and an ignition interlock device (IID) that monitors your blood alcohol content (BAC), preventing your vehicle from starting if you have alcohol in your system.

  • You might be ordered to attend DUI school and a MADD victim impact panel, all at your own expense.

With strong legal representation, though, all this could be avoided. Your lawyer might be able to get the case dismissed on a technicality like improper police procedures during the arrest or evidence collection. If your lawyer is particularly skilled, you could see the first-time DUI charges dropped down to reckless driving charges, making any sentencing far less difficult to manage.

What to Do After Being Convicted of First-Time DUI in Tennessee

There are many things you can do to reclaim your reputation and return to your everyday life after a first-time DUI conviction, such as:

  • Be on good behavior while serving time, no matter how long your sentence.

  • Look into the possibility of expungement, which would wipe your public record clean of any criminal activity. Unfortunately, most of the time with similar vehicular crimes, a diversion program is required to qualify for an expungement, and first-time DUI does not allow for such programs to enable expungement. Regardless, you should ask your lawyer about the possibility of expungement. 

  • Repair your reputation, be it through online services that specialize in this or through in-person volunteer work and other good deeds that convince others that you are more than that charge or conviction.

  • Seek employment without shame. You are not too proud, but you are also not any different from most people. 

  • Train yourself not to fall into other bad—and possibly illegal—habits.

  • Enroll in an alcohol treatment program so that you can be more disciplined about your life and your prior mistakes.

  • Never put yourself in a situation when you might even consider drinking and driving again.

Contact a Jacksboro, TN DUI Defense Lawyer

Before you work on making sure that first-time DUI is your last DUI, hire a lawyer who has the right strategies so you can achieve the best possible outcome. Retain a talented Campbell County criminal defense attorney to help you avoid a conviction and a criminal record. Call the Law Office of William F. Evans today at 423-449-7980 to schedule a free consultation.

 

Sources:

https://www.tn.gov/safety/publicsafety/duioutline.html

https://www.tncourts.gov/expungements

https://maddvip.org/

 

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