DUI and DWI Violations in Virginia
Driving under the influence of alcohol (DUI) and driving while intoxicated (DWI) are not the same offenses in Virginia but they carry the same serious punishment. It is up to the prosecutor to prove you are guilty of one of these offenses—and up to your criminal law attorney to help you navigate your court case.
DUI under Virginia law means you can be charged with this offense regardless of your blood alcohol content (BAC) at the time, if your consumption of alcohol impairs your ability to drive safely.
In Virginia, you can be charged with DWI if you’re behind the wheel with a blood alcohol content of .08 percent or higher. You don’t need to appear intoxicated to be charged with DWI.
Penalties for DUI/DWI in Virginia
Punishment is harsh, even for first-time offenders and include:
- Up to 12 months of jail time
- For BAC of at least .15 percent – mandatory sentence of at least five days
- For BAC of .20 or higher – mandatory 10 days in jail
- Fine of $250 to $2500
- Suspended driver’s license for up to a year
You could also face probation or an ignition interlock as part of the DUI consequences in Virginia.
What to do if you’re arrested for a DUI or DWI offense
These alcohol-related driving offenses are crimes. If you’ve been arrested and later convicted, you will carry a criminal record that affects many aspects of your life. You need a legal expert with experience in criminal law on your side to help you navigate the legal process. At The Alvarez Law Firm PLCC, we fight for our clients every step of the way and work on a defense strategy to yield the best outcomes possible. Contact us for a free consultation if you’ve been arrested for a DUI or DWI charge in Virginia.