Utah lawmakers are deciding on what could become the strictest DUI law in the nation. The bill, which passed in the state’s House Law Enforcement Committee, would lower the legal blood-alcohol content for driving from 0.08 to 0.05%.
Bella Dihn-Zarr, vice chairperson of the National Transportation Safety Board, is testifying for the bill.
“I am not here today to stop people from drinking,” she said in a statement to The Salt Lake Tribune. “I am here to stop people from dying.”
Utah joins the ranks of other states which have recently implemented new DUI laws, including Ohio. In the first days of 2017, Governor John Kasich signed “Annie’s Law,” which reduces the 12-month license suspension for first-time offenders if they use ignition interlock systems, breathalyzers that allow a car to start only if the user’s blood-alcohol content is under the legal limit. The law is named after Annie Rooney, who was killed by a drunk driver in 2013.
At this time, more than 1 million people in Ohio have been convicted of driving while impaired. This conviction can not only result in license suspension, but also carries a $250 to $1,000 fine. For accident-free cases in which the offender has no prior record, a DUI attorney can negotiate a plea bargain if the blood-alcohol content is bordering the legal limit of .08%. DUI laws in Ohio cap this limit at .02% for individuals under 21 years old.
While DUI laws by state vary, an attorney will be able to explain the specific rights guaranteed to convicted individuals and the possible measures to limit consequences. For example, a DUI lawyer may be able to challenge a case despite the evidence from a blood-alcohol content test. Attorneys can also use witnesses and video surveillance footage in these challenges. If convicted, the offender could see an impact on future opportunities, including employment status and the ability to obtain a loan.
Nearly 45,000 people in Ohio have faced these consequences more than five times, according the Ohio Department of Public Safety. New DUI laws such as “Annie’s Law” are designed to decrease reckless driving, especially for those already convicted, and avoid the above consequences.
Being charged with a DUI can throw your entire life into a tailspin, and your future will remain cloudy until your case is resolved. When seeking DUI legal representation, it is imperative that you find the best DUI law firm in your area to preserve your freedom.
An experienced DUI law firm will take a personal interest in your case and look at it from every angle to obtain the best result possible. Judges have been cracking down on DUI penalties as drunk driving continues to become more common. You already have multiple things going against you in a DUI case, and a knowledgeable DUI defense lawyer can ensure that the playing field is leveled.
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