You’ve had a good night out with friends, having drinks, laughing, and having fun. But now it’s time to go home, and you realize you’ve had too much to drink. Driving under the influence (DUI) of drugs or alcohol is a serious crime in Maryland. The consequences of a DUI conviction in Maryland can be severe and long-lasting.
In addition to fines and possible jail time, a DUI conviction can result in a criminal record, loss of driving privileges, and higher insurance rates. Whether it’s your first time or a repeated offense, a DUI conviction can impact many aspects of your life for years. This article will examine the consequences of a DUI conviction in Maryland and offer insight into the impact a DUI can have on your life.
Legal Consequences of a DUI Conviction in Maryland
The criminal penalties for a DUI conviction in Maryland can be severe. For a first-time offense, an individual can face
- Up to a year in jail
- Fines of up to $1,000
- License suspension of up to six months
For a second offense, the penalties are even more severe.
- Up to two years in jail
- Fines of up to $2,000
- License suspension of up to one year
Repeat offenders can face even harsher penalties, including longer jail sentences, higher fines, and longer license suspensions.
A DUI conviction in Maryland can also result in a criminal record. A criminal record can have far-reaching consequences for an individual’s personal and professional life. For example, it can be difficult for individuals with a criminal record to find employment or housing. A criminal record can also negatively impact an individual’s reputation in the community and make it difficult for them to move on.
In addition to the legal consequences of a DUI conviction, there are also financial consequences to consider. These can include:
- Increased insurance premiums — If you are convicted of a DUI, you can expect to pay higher insurance premiums for several years. Insurance companies view drivers with a DUI conviction as a higher risk.
- Higher car insurance deductibles — In addition to increased premiums, you may also face higher car insurance deductibles after a DUI conviction. This means you will have to pay more out-of-pocket for repairs if you are involved in an accident.
- Cost of an ignition interlock device — In Maryland, a DUI conviction may require you to install an ignition interlock device (IID) in your vehicle. This device requires you to blow into it before starting the car to ensure that you are not under the influence. You will be responsible for paying for the installation of an IID and the monthly service fee from the ignition interlock service provider.
Impact on Employment
A DUI conviction can also have a significant impact on your employment. Depending on the circumstances, you may lose your job or find it challenging to find new work. Some employers may be hesitant to hire someone with a criminal record, especially if the conviction is related to driving under the influence. This can make it challenging to support yourself and your family.
Additionally, if you hold a CDL and get arrested for a DUI in Maryland, you are held to an even higher standard. You can be convicted of a DUI with a BAC (blood alcohol concentration) of as little as .04%. And it doesn’t matter if you are off duty when you receive your DUI. The consequences remain the same.
First time offenders holding a CDL face up to a year in prison, up to $1,000 in fines, and a suspension of their CDL for a year. Losing your CDL will severely impact your ability to earn a living.
Impact on Relationships
A DUI conviction can impact your relationships. Your friends and family may be disappointed in you, and your reputation is tarnished. If you are sentenced to jail time, you will be separated from your loved ones for an extended period.
Impact on Future Opportunities
Finally, a DUI conviction can limit your future opportunities. For example, if you are seeking higher education or a professional license, a DUI conviction may make it difficult for you to obtain these goals.
Let Jeremy Widder Law Help Navigate the Legal System and Protect Your Rights
A DUI conviction in Maryland can have serious and far-reaching consequences for individuals and their families. The criminal penalties and financial hardships people face with a DUI conviction can make it difficult to move on from their mistakes. It’s essential to understand the seriousness of a DUI and make responsible choices when it comes to drinking and driving.
Additionally, if you are charged with a DUI, it’s beneficial to seek the assistance of an experienced criminal defense attorney to help you navigate the legal system and protect your rights. With the right support and guidance, you can minimize the impact of a DUI conviction and move forward with your life.
Jeremy Widder Law can provide that support and guidance when you need it most. We have experience in various legal practice areas and years of trial experience focusing on criminal defense. We will be by your side from start to finish and be your advocate every step of the way.
Contact us today for a consultation.