Provo, Utah DUI Defense Lawyers

Salt Lake City criminal lawyer

Drivers on the roads of Provo, Utah may be stopped by the police and charged with driving under the influence (DUI) if the police suspect they are intoxicated. While DUIs are relatively common, cases may vary greatly. Some drivers are charged with minor misdemeanors, while others face serious felonies.

Because DUI charges can be hard to predict, you need an experienced attorney on your side to help you fight your case. Evidence like the results of chemical testing and the behavior of the police during your DUI stop must be heavily scrutinized. An attorney can also argue to prevent prosecutors from upgrading your DUI charges to serious felonies.

Most drivers think of DUIs as their worst mistake. Do not let one serious mistake ruin the rest of your life. Call our Provo, Utah DUI defense lawyers for help fighting your charges and reducing your penalties. Call our team at Overson Law, PLLC at (801) 758-2287 for a free legal consultation.

How Do Drivers Get Charged with DUIs in Provo, Utah?

While most people know that states impose “legal limits” on blood alcohol concentrations (BAC), you do not necessarily have to exceed the state’s legal limit to be charged with a DUI. Utah imposes a much stricter legal limit than most other states. While other states typically have a legal limit of around .08%, Utah imposes a limit of only .05%. This means it takes fewer drinks for a person to be over the limit.

If you are stopped by law enforcement with a BAC of at least .05%, you can be charged with a per se DUI. The police might stop you on suspicion of DUI and instead find that your BAC is a bit lower than .05%. However, if alcohol is detected in your system, and the police believe you are unfit to drive due to intoxication, you can still be charged with a DUI.

The laws are even stricter for young, underage drivers. Generally, any underage drivers caught driving with any detectable amount of alcohol in their system will be charged with a DUI. Underage drivers may also face harsher consequences regarding their license and could lose their license until they turn 21. Call our Provo, Utah DUI defense lawyers for help fighting your DUI charges.

How Serious Are DUI Charges in Provo, Utah?

The severity of your DUI charges depends on your level of intoxication and your history of DUIs. A driver with a higher BAC or numerous DUIs on their record will face stricter charges than a first-time offender with a relatively low BAC. While DUI charges are often imposed as misdemeanors, they could be upgraded to serious felonies under certain circumstances.

According to Utah Code § 41-6a-503, a first or second violation will result in Class B misdemeanor charges. The charges may be upgraded to Class A misdemeanors if the driver caused bodily harm to another person while driving drunk, had a passenger under the age of 16, was 21 with a passenger under 18, was driving on the wrong side of the road, or was driving on a controlled-access highway.

A third or subsequent DUI violation within 10 years of the previous DUI conviction may be charged with a third-degree felony. A driver who causes serious bodily harm while driving drunk may also be charged with a third-degree felony.

After having previously been convicted of automobile homicide, a driver stopped for a DUI will be charged with a third-degree felony DUI. Similarly, if a driver has previously been convicted of a felony DUI, any subsequent DUI charges will be third-degree felonies.

It might be possible to fight your charges if the conditions for upgrading to more serious misdemeanors or felonies are not present. For example, if your charges are upgraded to felonies because of your history of DUIs, but you have not had a DUI conviction in the last 10 years, we could fight the upgrade and keep your charges at a misdemeanor level.

A person will be charged separately for each person they injure while driving drunk. If you injure 2 passengers in your own vehicle and 2 more in another vehicle, you can be charged with 4 separate offenses. The penalties for DUIs can add up very quickly, and you could lose your license, pay costly fines, or even go to jail. Call our Provo, Utah DUI defense attorneys for help.

Evidence Used in DUI Cases in Provo, Utah

A DUI stop does not take very long, but most evidence against you will come from this brief interaction with law enforcement. It is important to discuss your DUI stop with an attorney in explicit detail. Possible defense strategies could lie in the elements of your stop.

Police may collect the very first bits of evidence before they even stop you. The police might observe a driver driving erratically or dangerously and suspect them of being intoxicated. Law enforcement will note things like weaving between lanes, speeding, drifting across lanes, and other driving behaviors commonly associated with drunk drivers. This evidence is also what establishes the reasonable suspicion for your DUI stop.

Once you are stopped, the police may ask you to perform field sobriety tests. These tests are minor physical tasks that are difficult for an intoxicated person to complete. They typically test things like balance, motor skills, and your ability to comprehend and follow instructions – all things that are impaired by alcohol.

After arrest, you are legally required to submit to chemical testing. While the police will not physically force you to comply, you may be criminally charged for refusal to submit to testing. Testing may include a breathalyzer at the scene of the arrest, but police will also typically pursue a blood test (or perhaps a urine test).

It might be possible to defend yourself against DUI allegations if the police did not follow proper procedures and protocol when stopping, arresting, or testing you. In such cases, the evidence against you would be tainted, and we could suppress it. Call our Provo, Utah DUI defense lawyers for help.

Call Our Provo, Utah DUI Defense Attorneys

If you are charged with a DUI, call our Provo, Utah DUI defense attorneys right away. The sooner we get started on your case, the sooner we can begin challenging your charges. Call Overson Law, PLLC at (801) 758-2287 to schedule a free legal consultation with our team of experienced attorneys.