Almost anyone can be charged with a OUI / DUI. Suppose that you had too much to drink at a friend's birthday party but decided to drive the short way home anyway. If the neighborhood police officer sees you weaving across lanes, he might very well issue you a OUI / DUI. Or suppose that you had one too many glasses of wine with a colleague after work and did not want to bother with Uber or a cab. If a police officer sees you run a red light, then there is a good chance that you will receive a OUI / DUI.
Whether you settle your case or take it to court, a OUI / DUI does not affect only you. It also affects your family and possibly your livelihood. Keep in mind, too, that Massachusetts has some of the toughest drunk driving penalties in the country.
A OUI and a DUI are essentially the same in Massachusetts, and the General Law Chapter 90 Sections 24 and Section 24D explains the penalties. For the first offense, the penalties are up to two and a half years in jail, a $500 to $5,000 fine and a one year suspended license.
For the second offense, the penalties are incarceration for 60 days and up to two and a half years, a $600 to $10,000 fine and a two-year suspended license. By the fifth offense, the penalties are incarceration for two and a half years and up to five years, a $2,000 to $50,000 fine and permanent loss of your license.
It is worth noting that Massachusetts offers an Alternative Disposition option for first time and second time OUI / DUI offenders. This involves probation, entering a drug/alcohol treatment program, fines and a shorter suspended license. A good OUI / DUI lawyer can steer the prosecution in this direction.
If you have received a OUI / DUI, then contact us. You need an experienced OUI / DUI lawyer to protect your rights. This might be the most important decision you ever make. Now is not the time to go it alone.