Decades Of Successful Representation

Fairfax Criminal Defense Lawyers Aggressively Defending Clients Against Steep DUI Penalties

Virginia has some of the toughest DUI penalties in the country. However, the state’s DUI laws are far from clear, and even some of the best DUI defense attorneys have a hard time determining what their clients are facing. At the same time, it’s almost impossible to develop an effective defense strategy unless you understand what’s at stake. At Robinson Law, PLLC, we have decades of combined experience handling DUI cases and spend countless hours keeping up-to-date on all recent developments in Virginia DUI law. That way, we can advise you on all of your options from the very beginning, and together, we can come up with the best strategy to keep you out of jail and get you back on the road.

What Are The Penalties For A Fairfax DUI Conviction?

When talking about Virginia DUI punishments, it’s important to make the distinction between administrative and criminal penalties. As soon as you are arrested for a DUI, there are two different legal proceedings will begin: a civil case and a criminal case. The civil, or administrative, case is focused on whether and for how long your license will be suspended or revoked, whereas the criminal case is focused on what punishment you should receive if you are found guilty.

Administrative License Suspensions

Administrative penalties are those that you’ll experience based on being arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. These penalties attach regardless of whether you’re convicted. For example, the moment you are arrested for a DUI, the arresting officer will confiscate your driver’s license. If it is your first DUI, the suspension will last for seven days. However, for a second DUI offense, the suspension will be for 60 days or until your trial, whichever is sooner. If this is your third DUI arrest, your license will be suspended until your case goes to trial.

Criminal DUI Punishments

Virginia law establishes varying degrees of punishments depending on the number of prior DUI convictions on your record.

First DUI Offense

A first-offense DUI is a Class 1 misdemeanor, punishable by:

  • Up to a year in jail, but no mandatory minimum sentence of incarceration
  • A fine of at least $250, up to $2,500, and
  • 12-month driver’s license suspension

However, if your blood alcohol content was greater than .15%, you’ll face a mandatory jail term of five days. And if your BAC was over .20%, that will be increased to 10 days in jail.

Second DUI Offense

A second-offense DUI is a Class 1 misdemeanor. However, the seriousness of the offense is determined, in part, by when your last conviction was.

If your first DUI was within five years:

  • A minimum of 20 days in jail (and up to a year in jail)
  • A fine of at least $500, and
  • Three-year driver’s license revocation

If your first DUI was between five to ten years ago:

  • A minimum of 10 days in jail (and up to a year in jail)
  • A fine of at least $500, and
  • Three-year driver’s license revocation

Again, you’ll face an additional ten days in jail if your BAC was over .15% and 20 days in jail if your BAC was over .20%.

Third DUI Offense

If you have two prior DUIs, your third is considered a Class 6 felony, which carries extremely harsh punishments, including:

  • A minimum of 90 days in jail (up to five years in jail)
  • A fine of at least $1,000
  • Three-year driver’s license revocation

If your two prior DUIs were within the past five years, the mandatory jail sentence increases to six months.

Of course, judges have some discretion in the sentence they hand down, and it’s important to have an experienced Fairfax criminal defense attorney representing you to ensure that the judge hears all mitigating evidence suggesting why a lesser punishment is appropriate.

Speak With An Experienced Fairfax DUI Defense Attorney About Your Case Today

If you’re facing DUI charges in Fairfax County or anywhere else in northern Virginia, your next move should be to call Robinson Law, PLLC, to set up a free consultation. At Robinson Law, PLLC, we’ve assembled a dedicated team of criminal defense attorneys, each of which has significant hands-on experience handling DUI cases. We understand what’s at stake and are ready to put in the work to ensure that we secure the most favorable result in your case. To learn more and to schedule a free consultation today, call 703-542-3616. You can also connect with us through our online contact form. We proudly represent clients in Fairfax, Loudoun, Stafford counties and Suffolk, as well as throughout northern Virginia.