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Athens GA DUI Law Blog

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.

Georgia steps up against drunk driving during the holiday

The 4th of July holiday weekend is famous for being a dangerous time to drive, a weekend when there are many drunk driving accidents. In Georgia, the police department is stepping up to fight back against drunk driving even more than usual, hoping to keep the death and accident toll as low as can be.

The campaign that they are running is called Operation Zero Tolerance. On a national level, the government is already running another campaign that is called Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over. With the two running at once, the police hope they can have a more drastic impact than in recent years.

Ranking state DUI laws from lenient to strict

States are allowed to set their own DUI laws. These often end up being very similar in many regards, such as saying that drivers cannot be over 0.08 when it comes to Blood Alcohol Concentration. However, other parts of the law will vary widely, especially when looking at the legal penalties and punishments that are given out.

For instance, license suspensions are used in many states, and this can happen before you go to your trial. However, seven out of 50 states don't actually have these administrative suspensions at all. This is not to say that a suspension won't occur after a conviction, but just that it won't happen automatically after an arrest.

Georgia appellate court rules police checkpoint was unlawful

In mid-May, the Georgia Court of Appeals concluded that a road block conducted on Fourth of July weekend in 2011 violated the Fourth Amendment of the Constitution. However, the ruling didn’t go so far as deeming all roadblocks to be unconstitutional.

As Daily Report details, the case involved a woman who stopped at a roadblock that police officers had set up in Fulton County on July 4, 2011. The woman admitted that she had consumed alcohol, and the officers administered a breath test and field sobriety tests that determined the she was impaired. 

License suspensions upheld in wake of implied consent verdict

In March, the Georgia Supreme Court held that the state’s DUI implied consent law is unconstitutional. As we explained in a past post on the ruling, the implied consent law holds that drivers must consent to chemical testing after being pulled over for drunk driving or they lose their driver’s license for at least one year.

Georgia’s highest court ruled that the law is unconstitutional because it violates the Constitution’s protection from unreasonable search and seizures because the suspect who must submit to the chemical testing has not voluntarily consented to waive the right to a warrant being obtained by police before the “search and seizure” takes place.