The holiday season is a time for festive gatherings and merriment, but it’s also a time when law enforcement is on high alert for impaired drivers. As you embark on your journey home for the holidays, the last thing you want is to see flashing lights in your rearview mirror.
But if you find yourself being pulled over for suspicion of driving under the influence, don’t let it put a damper on your holiday spirit. Our team at Stechschulte Nell Law understands the stress and confusion that comes with a drinking and driving charge, and we’re here to guide you through what to do if you’re stopped by law enforcement while visiting family during this merry season.
What Happens if I Get a DUI in Another State?
You’re away from home, enjoying the holidays, when you suddenly find yourself pulled over for suspected driving under the influence. What happens next can seem highly intimidating, especially since you’re not in your home state. Each state has its laws regarding DUIs— Florida, of course, being no exception. So what’s the game plan? Let’s break it down.
First, it’s important to know that a DUI charge in any state is a serious offense. Your home state will recognize and enforce the charge per the Driver License Compact. This inter-state agreement shares information and cooperates with law enforcement, ensuring that driving offenses don’t “disappear” across state lines.
Second, the out-of-state DUI charges typically involve having to deal with legal aspects in two states — the state where the offense occurred and your home state. This can lead to additional fines, penalties, and other exacerbating effects on your driving privileges. It may also lead to higher insurance rates, particularly if a conviction occurs.
Actions to Take When You’re Pulled Over for a DUI
Being informed and prepared could make a big difference in the outcome of your situation. Crucial steps to remember when you’re pulled over for suspicion of DUI include:
- #1. Stay Calm: Your first reaction may be panic, but it’s essential to remain calm. Breathe and keep your composure. Co-operate with the officer and be polite.
- #2. Be Careful with Your Words: You have the right to remain silent—exercise it. You are not obligated to admit anything that could incriminate you.
- #3. Deny Field Sobriety Tests: You may decline to partake in roadside sobriety exercises (though it can come with implications).
- #4. Ask for an Attorney: As soon as it’s appropriate, request legal counsel. The sooner you get legal assistance, the better your chances of a positive outcome.
Read More > Should You Refuse a Breathalyzer Test?
How We Defend Out-of-State DUIs
Defending against out-of-state DUI charges can be a complex process, but it’s one that we at Stechschulte Nell Law navigate expertly. We understand that each case is unique and that different jurisdictions can have different requirements and penalties. This calls for a comprehensive approach that includes in-depth legal research and a thorough investigation of the circumstances surrounding your case.
Initially, we tend to focus on understanding the specific DUI laws of the state where the alleged offense took place. Our vast experience allows us to map out potential defense strategies effective against specific rules and criteria in various states. Communication is another crucial part of our strategy, corresponding with law enforcement agencies, prosecutors, and courts on your behalf to ensure that we have all the relevant information.
We also scrutinize the circumstances and evidence associated with your case.
This may include:
- Questioning the legality of the traffic stop
- Examining the accuracy of field sobriety tests
- Challenging the reliability of breathalyzer or blood test results.
It’s all about building a strong defense tailored to the unique aspects of your situation.
Even if you’re currently in Florida, we can deal with your out-of-state DUI charges effectively and efficiently. We take each case seriously, ensuring that your legal rights are protected every step of the way.
Tips to Avoid a DUI
Here are a few tips for responsible drinking and preventing a drinking and driving charge from dampening your holiday spirit:
#1. Have a Designated Driver
Choose someone who’s committed to staying sober and ensuring everyone gets home safely. If that’s not feasible, consider using a rideshare service or public transportation. This small step can save you from potential risks and unwanted legal complications.
#2. Limit Your Alcohol Intake
If you’re going to partake in holiday cheer, stick within the recommended limits. Remember, being in control of your consumption can help you stay in control on the road. Consider drinking slowly, alternating with non-alcoholic beverages, and eating food alongside your drinks to slow alcohol absorption.
If you are pulled over for a DUI, don’t panic, we are here to help you navigate the next steps, no matter what time day or night.
Tampa DUI Defense
A driving under the influence charge can certainly cast a shadow over the holiday season, but it doesn’t have to ruin it. With the experienced lawyers at Stechschulte Nell Law by your side, you can find the support and guidance needed to navigate through this challenging time.
Whether you’re facing a DUI in Florida or out of state visiting family, our team, led by board-certified attorney Ben Stechschulte is dedicated to providing strong and effective defense strategies tailored to your specific situation.
Don’t let a momentary mistake define your holidays – reach out to us today for a FREE DUI case review and let us help you protect your rights and move forward with confidence.