If you were recently stopped for driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, you may be wondering whether you need a DUI defense attorney. The simple answer is… it’s never a bad idea to contact an attorney for advice, and it is never too soon to retain a Lincoln DUI lawyer after being charged.
Working with the dedicated Lincoln DUI lawyers at Berry Law could prevent you from making statements or taking actions that jeopardize your case and your future. Moreover, a knowledgeable criminal defense attorney will ensure you understand your pending charges, help you evaluate your legal options, and fight for your freedom while pursuing the most positive outcome available.
What Constitutes a DUI Violation?
Nebraska state law prohibits a motor vehicle driver from operating or being “in the actual physical control of any motor vehicle” while under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Nebraska Revised Statutes §60-6,196 specifies that a driver has violated the state DUI laws if a breath or blood test reveals a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .08 percent or higher.
This statute also allows law enforcement officials to stop drivers who they suspect may be intoxicated and, if they find probable cause to believe a driver is under the influence, to make an arrest even if the driver’s BAC level is below .08. As a result, police may charge a driver with DUI based on a chemical test or the results of field sobriety tests.
The Nebraska statute also allows drivers to be arrested when they are not actually operating a motor vehicle. For example, if someone is in a situation that could be considered having “actual physical control” of the vehicle, such as being in the driver’s seat in a parked car, they may still be charged with a DUI.
What is the Potential Cost of a First DUI Conviction?
Being arrested for a DUI can lead to substantial expenses. The payments you may be facing will depend on several factors. For example, the court can take into account your breath or blood test BAC results, whether you have a prior criminal record, and the conditions surrounding the pending arrest.
The DUI defense team at Berry Law created this summary to prepare you for the possible payments you may be required to make as a result of a first-time DUI conviction:
- Upon arrest, you can expect to pay approximately $500 to post a pre-trial bond to be released from police detention.
- Before finalizing your case, you may need to submit to a Chemical Dependency Examination (CDE). These exams can cost $100-$200, but your medical insurance carrier may cover the expense for a court-ordered dependency exam.
- Upon conviction, Nebraska law requires mandatory DUI sanctions, fines, and court fees. For a first-time DUI, if you receive a sentence of probation, you must pay $400. If you are sentenced to DUI jail, expect to pay between $400 and $500.
- Mandatory county filing fees are currently $49.
- If you are placed on probation, you are responsible to pay $30 to enroll in probation and $20 per month while you serve your probation sentence to cover the cost of drug testing processing fees.
- In addition to the drug testing processing costs, each drug test you may be asked to complete will cost an additional $30 per test.
- For a first DUI offense, you can expect to pay $175 – $200 for the installation of an interlock device on your vehicle and its use for up to 60 days.
- Outside of the court system, you must also pay $125 to the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) for the return of your driver’s license after a DUI license suspension.
- If you apply for a DUI work permit that will allow you to drive for work purposes during your sentence, the DMV requires successful completion of a driving course that also comes with a cost.
- Finally, most DUI lawyers charge a flat fee that could range from $800 to $2,500 depending on the unique circumstances involved in your case. For example, if you hurt someone, you caused an accident, or someone died as a part of your DUI charge, you can expect to pay substantially more attorney fees.
In a typical first-time DUI case, a driver who receives a conviction can expect to pay at least $2,000-$4,000.
Of course, DUI convictions can also carry other, non-financial penalties including a jail or prison sentence, job loss, and increased car insurance premiums. With solid legal representation from a DUI attorney in the Berry Law Office in Lincoln, we’ll help minimize the impact a DUI conviction can have on your wallet and your future.
Possible Driver’s License Penalties for DUI Violations
Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs in Lincoln is treated as a Class W misdemeanor for a first offense. According to the penalty provisions established in N.R.S. §60-6,197.03, a first-time offender may have their driver’s license suspended for six months after conviction, or for a year if they are found to have a BAC of .15 percent or more. However, drivers who submitted to a chemical test may be eligible for driving privileges with an ignition interlock device after a portion of the revocation period has passed.
Subsequent violations increase the length of the revocation. With one prior offense, the court would revoke a defendant’s license for 18 months upon a second DUI conviction. After two or more prior offenses, drivers risk losing their licenses for 15 years. These potential penalties underscore the critical role a Lincoln DUI lawyer can play in defending your legal rights and working to mitigate the negative outcome of your DUI case.
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What are the Criminal Penalties for DUI Violations?
Under N.R.S. §28-106, penalties for misdemeanor DUI offenses vary depending on a variety of factors including whether the defendant has any prior offenses and convictions. Possible penalties may include a term of imprisonment as well as a fine. DUI offenses may be treated as felonies if the driver involved has three or more prior convictions.
A DUI defense attorney in Lincoln can help with your DUI situation, but bear in mind, some penalties are more severe than others. The maximum sentences a driver may face for various DUI scenarios according to Nebraska law are as follows:
- No prior convictions – 60 days imprisonment and $500 fine
- One prior conviction – six months imprisonment and $500 fine
- Two prior convictions – one year of imprisonment and $1,000 fine
- Two prior convictions with BAC of .15 percent, or three prior convictions – Class IIIA felony charge, three years of imprisonment, and $10,000 fine
- Four or more prior convictions – Class IIA felony charge and 20 years of imprisonment
Contact the Lincoln DUI Lawyers at Berry Law to Help Protect Your Rights Today
When you work with an aggressive and knowledgeable Lincoln DUI lawyer at Berry Law, your attorney will draw on years of experience to gather the necessary evidence needed to build the best defense for your case. To schedule a consultation with an experienced DUI lawyer, contact Berry Law today.
“The best way to support and defend the Constitution of the United States is through zealously defending the constitutional rights of each individual client.” – John Stevens Berry Sr.