In the last several years, DUI arrests in Miami-Dade County have decreased more than 30 percent. Speculation exists regarding the exact reason for the decline, but some theories include the increase of ridesharing companies like Uber and Lyft, a growing population of Millennials that drink at home or walk when they go out for a drink, an educated public, and proactive law enforcement officers who try to prevent drinking and driving instead of making arrests after the fact. With such a focus on the reduction of drinking and driving, the courts in South Florida remain tough for those who have been charged with driving under the influence (DUI).
When a Florida driver racks up two or more DUI offenses on their driving record, they can expect harsh penalties under Florida law.
If you have been arrested and charged with another DUI on top of one or more previous charges, it may be wise to contact an experienced DUI defense attorney to advocate for you in court. In addition to legal penalties that come with a DUI, you might face social and professional consequences including damage to your reputation, damage to personal relationships, job loss, and more.
A seasoned DUI lawyer will fight to keep you out of jail and limit fines. Whether you are still in jail in Miami-Dade County, have been released on bail after a DUI arrest, or you are seeking a DUI attorney for a family member or friend, call the skilled DUI lawyers at Meldon Law at 800-373-8000 to discuss the details of your case and figure out the best path forward for your circumstances.
Our Results With Cases Involving Multiple DUIs
The DUI defense attorneys at Meldon Law have represented more than 100 clients who have been arrested for driving under the influence. In many cases, our diligent lawyers have been able to have cases dismissed, charges reduced, or penalties reduced. After a person has been convicted one DUI, Florida courts begin to see offenders as a danger to the road who didn’t learn from the first offense. Sometimes this bias leads to rights violations or a sentencing of the harshest possible penalties. No matter how many DUIs you have under your belt, federal laws guarantee certain rights while going through the judicial system. Let one of the dedicated DUI attorneys at Meldon law advocate for you rights and fight to get the best results for your case.
Penalties for Multiple DUI Offenses in Florida
Under Florida law, each DUI offense brings stiffer penalties that include larger fines, more jail time, and longer periods without a your vehicle. Penalties also include longer revocation times and possible permanent revocation of your Florida Drivers’ License. Each arrest occurs under different conditions and judges have a range for sentencing, but here are the general guidelines for penalties after two or more DUI convictions under Florida law:
Fines and Fees
If you are convicted of a second DUI, the court will assess a minimum $1,000 fine, but not more than the maximum $2000. Any further DUI’s will result in a minimum $2,000 fine, but on the fourth DUI, the law removes the maximum limit leaving the fine amount to the court’s discretion. In cases where the driver’s blood alcohol level (BAL) registers as 0.15 or more, or they have a minor under age 14 in the car, the fine amount doubles. If the court orders an offender to participate in a treatment program or other type of court-ordered assessment, he or she will also be responsible for the costs and fees associated with those programs.
A second DUI conviction doesn’t typically result in the 10 days of mandatory jail time unless it occurs within five years of the first DUI. If a driver gets convicted of a third DUI within 10 years, they must spend a minimum of 30 days in jail. Maximum jail times for multiple DUI offenses include nine months for a second conviction, one year for a third conviction, and five years for four or more convictions. Like fines, jail time increases when the BAL reaches the 0.15 threshold or when a driver has a minor in the vehicle.
Depending on the situation, Florida law requires that courts limit vehicle access to multiple DUI offenders. This includes the court taking an offenders vehicle away for 30 to 90 days after a second or third DUI conviction. Florida law also requires that those with two or more DUI convictions have an Ignition Interlock Device (IID) on their vehicle, to prevent drivers from operating their vehicle if alcohol registers when they blow into the device. Repeat offenders can expect to have an IID on their vehicle for between one and five years based on how many previous DUI convictions are on their record.
Loss of Driver’s License
Drivers with multiple DUI offenses will lose their license for a period of time. Two DUIs within five years require a five-year revocation under Florida law and a third conviction within ten years of the second requires a 10-year revocation period. After the fourth DUI, Florida will permanently revoke an offender’ license. In all situations, the court might consider granting a hardship reinstatement after a year or two. Even those who have had their license permanently revoked might be eligible for a hardship license after five years.
Contact an Experienced Miami-Dade DUI Defense Lawyer
Multiple DUI offenses carry harsh penalties, and can have devastating effects on a defendant’s personal and professional life. An experienced DUI defense lawyer can advocate for you and fight to reduce your jail time and fines. Your attorney might find procedural issues, rights violations, mishandling of evidence, and other potential defense strategies to help you stay out of jail. If you have been arrested for another DUI in South Florida, let a seasoned DUI defense attorney guide you through the judicial process and minimize your penalties. Contact our skilled legal team at Meldon Law online or call at 800-373-8000 for a free case evaluation to learn about your rights and discuss your next steps.
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Founder of the Meldon Law FirmEmail Jeffrey Meldon