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DWI/DWAI LAWS

 
 
 
 
 
 
 

THE DWI PENALTIES ARE SEVERE

New York State treats Driving While Ability Impaired (known as "DWAI") and Driving While Intoxicated (known as "DWI") very seriously.  

 

A conviction for even a misdemeanor DWI means more than just having a criminal record.  The additional penalties may include:

 

  • Incarceration (jail) for up to one year

  • Probation for up to three years

  • Driver's License Suspension for at least six months

  • A fine between $300 and $1,000

  • Up to $750 in Driver Responsibility Assessment fees

  • Community Service Requirements

  • Drinking and Driving Program (DDP) with costs up to $300

  • Victim Impact Panel

  • Vehicle Interlock Device Vehicle Interlock Device with a set up fee of $125 and monthly service fee of up to $110

  • Increased Car Insurance Rates or being dropped by your insurance company

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The information below is general information meant for educational purposes.  It does not create an attorney-client relationship with any person who views it.  If you think you need personalized legal assistance, always speak with a qualified attorney.

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REMEMBER: The information below is general information meant for educational purposes only.  It does not create an attorney-client relationship with any person who views it.  If you need personalized legal assistance, always speak with a qualified attorney.

1. HOW DO THEY DECIDE WHICH CHARGES TO BRING?

The law distinguishes the offenses, and thus what to charge someone with, based on things like age, type of vehicle, if children are in the vehicle at the time of the offense, and the presence and amount of alcohol and/or drugs.

 

DWI cases can be "aggravated" (with harsher punishment) when the amount of alcohol in a person's blood is very high, a person refuses to take the chemical test, there is a traffic accident, or an attempt to evade police or flee the scene of a DWI accident.

 

Those facing multiple charges, or who have a prior DWI conviction may face more severe consequences.

2. DWI LAWS IN NEW YORK STATE, AN OVERVIEW

DWI and DWAI offenses are codified under Vehicle and Traffic Law 1192 of the New York State Penal Law.

 

Depending on the facts particular to a case, a person may be charged with VTL 1192.(1), 1192(2), 1192(2-a)(a), 1192(3), 1192(4), or 1192(4-a), amongst other crimes.

DWI/DWAI CHARGES

 

3. V.T.L. 1192(1): DRIVING WHILE ABILITY IMPAIRED

(BY ALCOHOL)

Under this subsection the law states that a person's ability is impaired when the consumption of alcohol has actually impaired, to any extent, the physical and mental abilities which such person is expected to possess in order to operate a vehicle as a reasonable and prudent driver.  If a person is charged with any of the below offenses, it is likely they will also be facing an additional charge or charges.

 

4. VTL 1192(2): DRIVING WHILE INTOXICATED: PER SE

(BY ALCOHOL)

Under this subsection the law states that a person is intoxicated when that person has .08% or higher blood alcohol content ("known as BAC") as shown by chemical analysis.  One's BAC is most often measured by a Breathalyzer machine.  A Breathalyzer machine is a type-writer sized machine used by the Police to measure the amount of alcohol that has been consumed and diffused into the lungs.

If you blow less than a .08% you can still be charged with VTL 1192 if you are driving a commercial vehicle (.04%), or if you are under 21 (.02%). 

 

5. V.T.L. 1192(2-a): AGGRAVATED DRIVING WHILE INTOXICATTED: PER SE (BY ALCOHOL)

Under this subsection the law states that a person is intoxicated when that person has .18% or higher BAC as shown by chemical analysis (e.g., a Breathalyzer).  The law treats this crime especially seriously because the person's level of intoxication is far beyond the usual limit of .08%.

 

6. V.T.L. 1192.3: DRIVING WHILE INTOXICATED

(BY ALCOHOL)

Under this subsection the law states that a person is intoxicated by the consumption of alcohol when he is incapable, to a substantial extent, of employing the physical and mental abilities which he is expected to possess in order to operate a vehicle as a reasonable and prudent driver.  No chemical test is needed to charge someone with this offense.  Someone can be charged with this based upon the police officers observations and certain legal presumptions.

 

7. V.T.L. 1192.4: DRIVING WHILE ABILITY IMPAIRED

(BY DRUG OTHER THAN ALCOHOL)

Under this subsection the law states that a person's ability is impaired by the use of drugs when the person's use of drugs has actually impaired, to any extent, the physical and mental abilities which such person is expected to possess in order to operate a vehicle as a reasonable and prudent driver.

 

8. V.T.L. 1192(4-a): DRIVING WHILE ABILITY IMPAIRED

(BY ALCOHOL AND DRUGS)

Under this subsection the law states that a person's ability is impaired when the person's use of drugs and consumption of alcohol has impaired, to any extent, the physical and mental abilities which such person is expected to possess in order to operate a vehicle as a reasonable and prudent driver.

 

DEVERNA LAW

305 Broadway, 14th Fl

New York, NY 10007

 

Tel. (212) 321-0025

Fax (212) 321-0024

 

E-mail:

jpd@mynylawyer.com

 

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