Chantilly Third Offense DUI Penalties

Due to the fact that a third offense DUI charge is considered a felony in Virginia, different penalties could result and a variety of things could happen with your case if you are convicted. Every defense is going to depend on the specific facts of your case and on your specific blood alcohol level, but a person is facing penalties such as a mandatory minimum of six months in jail and a $1,000 fine that could potentially be much higher. In addition, a person’s vehicle could be forfeited under certain circumstances and their license could be revoked. With these things mind, it becomes imperative that anyone accused consults with a third offense DUI attorney in Chantilly immediately to build a defense, and ensure their rights are protected.

Aggravating Factors

The biggest aggravating factor for subsequent DUI cases is the time between the alleged DUIs. If the third offense is not within 10 years, then it will only be a 90-day mandatory minimum sentence, whereas if it is within 10 years, it will be six months mandatory minimum in jail.

Some other aggravating factors would be a heightened BAC level, where someone’s blood alcohol level is above a certain point, if there were children in the car, or there was some type of accident that occurred as a result of a third offense DUI or injury that occurred to somebody else.

Court Treatment

Courts treat third offense DUI charges seriously. They are going to use the third offense DUI conviction as an opportunity to teach someone a lesson and attempt to deter them from doing it again, they are going to give a heavy sentence and have that individual fined to try to provide a deterrent from this happening again.

There are not any diversionary programs or probation that will allow a person to avoid a third offense DUI. There still will be probation associated with their DUI once they are released from jail, however, they are not going to get some kind of pretrial diversionary program.

Driver’s License Suspension

For a conviction for a third offense DUI charge, the driver’s license will be suspended indefinitely. If someone is not convicted of the DUI, most times they can get their license back even if they are charged with a third offense DUI.

However, a lot is going to depend on the facts of someone’s case. If they have some type of administrative suspension, that is something that could be problematic. If they are found not guilty, they do not have the license suspension attached to them that would be attached to somebody who was convicted of a third offense DUI.

Challenging a Suspension

If somebody’s license is revoked indefinitely for a third offense DUI in Virginia, they can apply for a restricted license but they have to wait for three years. They are not going to be able to drive even with a restricted license for three years.

Someone can then later on petition the court to restore their driving privileges after about five years, and it is up to the court’s discretion. There is no right someone has to drive in Virginia and if they are convicted, it is not something that may be available to them, depending on the facts of their case and depending on their criminal history.

Working with a DUI Attorney

Because of the potential penalties for a third offense DUI in Chantilly, you need an attorney who understands DUI law and is able to clearly communicate both with the prosecutor and with the judge about your case. It is important to have somebody who is familiar with Chantilly, as a lot is going to depend on how this attorney is able to communicate with the prosecutor. Especially if it is a third offense DUI where you are facing a large amount of mandatory minimum time, the negotiations process is crucial.

An attorney that understands the difference between a jury trial, the risks that are associated with a bench trial, and the type of preparation that is needed is going to be important. If it is going to be a jury trial, having counsel who is convincing in front of a jury is going to be the most important thing. Even if you have facts that are on your side, if you do not have an attorney who can aggressively advocate for you and create a really robust defense, then you are putting yourself at a huge disadvantage. An experienced attorney will be your best assest facing third offense DUI penalties.

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