Daniels & Rothman, P.C. map & directions
toll free: local:
866-422-8045 706-621-5166

call us now for a free consultation

Athens GA DUI Law Blog

Drug/DUI court: Could it be in your future?

If your night out on the town culminated in an arrest for driving under the influence of either alcohol or drugs, you may soon be introduced to the Athens-Clarke County DUI/Drug Court.

Drug Court is a team-oriented concept that involves judges, law enforcement, the Solicitor-General, the public defender's office, probation officers, a court coordinator and substance abuse treatment professionals. Team members cooperate and support participants who attempt to address and combat their substance abuse problems that landed them in trouble.

Underage drinking and driving carries high costs

Driving is a privilege and not a right, and the state of Georgia holds the keys to that right.

Younger drivers from 15 to 20 have a statistically higher risk of dying in a car accident, and collisions are the number one cause of death for those in that age group. In one calendar year, 136 drivers died and another 193 others suffered fatal injuries from wrecks in Georgia that involved drivers under 21.

Athens-Clarke County turns up the H.E.A.T. on drivers

Impaired drivers and other careless motorists may run afoul of the law in and around Athens, as the Athens-Clarke County police are taking part in the H.E.A.T. program.

The acronym stands for Highway Enforcement of Aggressive Traffic, and three additional units have been dedicated to making streets safer by stepping up traffic enforcement and educating motorists. Through a grant issued by the Governor's Office of Highway Safety, these additional police units are staffed by officers whose salaries also stem from the grant.

What are whiskey plates?

Commonly known as a "whiskey plate" and sometimes a "party plate," these are license plates that are given out to people who have been convicted of a DUI. The plates are mainly used in Ohio and Minnesota, where they're a different color than the standard plates that other drivers use, making them easily visible to other motorists and police officers.

In Georgia, these plates may also be used. While they do show that a person has gotten a DUI in the past, the important difference is that they're the same color as the standard plates, so they don't stand out as much at a glance.

What happens if you're convicted of DUI in Georgia?

If you get arrested for impaired driving in Georgia, a conviction for even a first offense can potentially land you behind bars for a year. However, that is not all that you have to worry about.

Fines for a first offense range from $300 to $1,000, and there is a $210 fee to reinstate your driver's license. Additional repercussions can include having your license suspended for as long as a year and having to do a minimum mandatory of 40 community service hours.

Athens DWI courts chosen as national model

The courts are finally beginning to realize that those with multiple arrests for driving while impaired have issues that need to be addressed in more ways than just by imprisoning them.

Judges are aligning themselves with substance abuse counselors, parole officers, defense attorneys and prosecutors to find workable solutions for those facing charges of driving under the influence.

Helping Georgia residents navigate their DUI charges

If you're up against the threat of serious punishment in your DUI case, you will want to handle your criminal defense with care. At Daniels & Rothman, we know exactly what our clients are up against and we take it all into consideration in their defense.

Firstly, Georgia residents arrested and accused of crimes -- no matter what those crimes happen to be -- will not only face the threat of criminal punishment. They will also face the threat of social and family ramifications as news spreads among friends, co-workers and family members of the arrest and allegations. Indeed, we have seen many individuals' careers destroyed prior to the completion of their criminal law proceedings, even though we are all technically "innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt."

What must Greek houses do to avoid underage drinking?

School is about to start, and that means returning to Greek houses for a lot of students. While these organizations may be located off campus and they may hold parties where legal members of the group drink alcohol, it's important for them not to give any alcohol to minors. Often, the freshman and sophomores in the groups are only 18, 19 or 20, so they can't drink even if they've been in the group for years.

One way that groups do this is by keeping the parties confined to the groups only. They're not intended, without special permission, to be open parties for the public. This way, they can monitor who comes and how old they are.

What is the difference between license suspension and revocation?

You do not have a right to drive in Georgia, not in the sense that many people assume. Instead, driving is a convenience that can be taken away from you. One common way that this happens is when you are given a DUI charge. Your license could be either suspended or revoked, and you must know the difference.

A suspension is temporary. It lasts for a set amount of time that is often laid out directly in the law—it's not always up to the discretion of the judge. You could lose your license for six months, for example. When the time runs out, you don't automatically get the license back. You have to put in an application, and your case will be reviewed to see if you did everything you needed to do to have the suspension lifted.

Brain abnormalities could be linked to underage drinking

Researchers at Duke University recently carried out a study to look at the impact of underage drinking on the body and the brain. They used rats for the study, but it's thought that the same results could be seen in humans.

What they found was that health issues and brain abnormalities were created when young, developing brains were exposed to alcohol. This has a lot to do with the neurological development happening in the brain at that time, which is why the same results are not always seen in older adults, whose brains are fully developed.