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What Makes Maryland DUI Charges Unique

The numerous and complex laws in Maryland are what makes Maryland DUI charges unique. Because of this, alleged offenders need to consider retaining the services of an attorney who could help preserve your future. DUI charges are serious. The impact of a charge or conviction could bring with it lasting consequences that could affect your ability to apply for work, apartments, or even a phone. It is within your interests to reach out to an attorney today who could evaluate your case and explain Maryland laws to you.

How Maryland DUI laws Differ from Other Jurisdictions

DUI laws in Maryland differ from those in nearby jurisdictions as some of the DUI laws tend to be complicated. There are many technical and subtle distinctions between different tiers of liability and different types of “driving while impaired” (DWI) and “driving under the influence” (DUI) infractions. For example, in Maryland, if a person has their license suspended, they may still be able to receive restricted driving privileges and be allowed to drive. These restrictions allow for commute to and from work or to and from school. Sometimes they might be a bit broader and restrictions might equate to a form of curfew. However, this is certainly not the case for nearby D.C. jurisdictions.

A person who has their license suspended or even revoked may apply to the Maryland Motor Vehicle Administration (MVA) and request to receive restricted driving privileges. In Washington, D.C., if a person’s license is suspended, except in rare circumstances, there are no exceptions for school or work. The person would not be able to drive on restricted privileges the way they would be in Maryland.

Another significant difference between Maryland and D.C. is that in Maryland involves when a person is arrested for driving under the influence and is asked to submit a biological sample for testing for the presence of alcohol, which is usually done via a breath sample by blowing into a breathalyzer but sometimes could be a blood sample or urine sample, if the person refuses, it would result in the suspension of driving privileges. That refusal may not be used as evidence against the person in any criminal case. The idea is that the Fifth Amendment allows the person to remain silent and their refusal to testify and offer information may not be used to infer guilt or liability against them. Similarly, the person’s refusal to participate in any of those tests may not be used at a trial to infer guilt or liability against them. In D.C., it is different. If a person refuses to provide or participate in any of those tests, knowing they could have the immediate consequences to driving privileges, the government would be allowed to use their refusal against them in any criminal trial. They could offer into evidence the refusal and argue that it shows that they were under the influence or impaired by alcohol.

How DWI Charges Are Treated in Maryland

If a person is licensed in a state that only uses a 0.08 BAC standard in issuing DUIs, a lesser offense such as driving while impaired in Maryland would be subject to the Maryland law, which does not require any evidence of any specific or certain alcohol level in a person’s system. Driving while impaired only requires evidence that the person was impaired by alcohol and driving the vehicle. There is just for need for evidence that there was some alcohol present in the person’s system and that the person was impaired by alcohol, regardless of how large or small that amount of alcohol may be. That person is going to be subject to that law in Maryland. If it is proven that a person is driving while impaired, they would be subject to the penalties under Maryland law. They are going to receive a jail sentence for 60 days. They would have eight points imposed on their driving record, which would result in a suspension of their driving privilege in Maryland. Usually that would result in a suspension in the person’s licensing state, but the determination would be up to the DMV or the equivalent agency and specific rules in the person’s home state.

How a Local Maryland Attorney Could Help Drivers Facing DUI Charges

A local attorney could help out-of-state drivers facing a DUI charge in Maryland in a variety of ways. An out-of-state driver is likely going to be unfamiliar with the court system and the court process in Maryland, so a local attorney could be invaluable with their knowledge of the local laws and regulations as well as their familiarity with the MVA regulations and process. A local attorney is going to have experience working with the prosecutor and the judge, so they could provide a few different resources to the out-of-state driver.

They would be able to provide information, utilizing their local knowledge, and could provide an effective strategy to address the charges and produce a favorable outcome for the person. They could provide peace of mind. If a person is traveling in Maryland or to Maryland in the state of DUI, not only are they attending to stresses and concerns that come while facing a DUI charge and facing, which potentially could be serious consequences, but the stress from another state, even across the country. The local attorney is going to be able to address all the person’s concerns or questions and minimize the need for the person to travel to court. The person would likely need to go to court at least for one appearance. The local attorney may be able to have the person’s presence waived for some court hearings or make adjustments to minimize the logistical impact of the case process on the person’s life. It could be extremely helpful to have a local attorney any time an out-of-state driver is facing a DUI charge in Maryland.

Reach Out to an Attorney Today

While facing any sort of charge related to driving while impaired is a serious ordeal, it could be made even more complicated depending on which state you were pulled over and charged in. What makes Maryland DUI charges unique is how defendants could use or refuse evidence in court. However, and as with any court case, handling trial on your own or with a public defender may not be the wisest decision. It takes an experienced attorney familiar with Maryland DUI laws to draft a case that could be used to produce a favorable outcome. Do not waste time planning your trial alone, reach out to an attorney today.

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