DUI Defense in Ocala Choose the Powerful Defense of Dunham & Ingram

Ocala DUI Attorneys

Get Powerful Defense for Your Charges!

Driving under the influence of alcohol is never a wise idea and it can put you and others on the road at risk of serious injury or even death. If you have been arrested for DUI, you are no doubt frightened and concerned about the repercussions you might be facing. Since DUI puts so many people at risk, law enforcement officers and prosecutors will work tenaciously to arrest and convict offenders, seeking to keep the public roads safe.

A DUI conviction can bring serious consequences, so if you have been arrested, the first step you should take is making contact with a criminal defense attorney at Dunham & Ingram to retain strong legal counsel for your case.

Learn more about drunk driving cases in Florida:

DUI Laws & Penalties in Florida

In Florida, it is illegal to operate a motor vehicle if your BAC (blood alcohol content) is 0.08% or above. If police stop you for a first time DUI, you could face a misdemeanor or felony charge, depending on the circumstances surrounding the incident.

Assuming that serious bodily injury or death was not inflicted upon another during your DUI, you may face six to nine months in jail, fines of $250-1000 and risk having your license suspension of six months to one year. You may also face probation, community service, DUI school and vehicle impound. If the offense was a second or greater, punishments can swiftly escalate.

DUI: The First Ten Days

If you're one of the thousands of Floridians who is arrested for a DUI, the time to start acting is now. In 2010, Marion County had 726 CONVICTIONS and Alachua County had 431 CONVICTIONS for driving while under the influence. This statistic does not include arrests that didn't yield a conviction. The effect of a DUI can be anywhere from little more than a momentary set back to completely devastating for years to come based on the choices you make.

The most pressing concern clients face is usually saving their driver license. Without a license, many clients find themselves unemployed, unable to care for family, and with much bigger problems than their original arrest. There are two entities that try to take away your license. The first is the criminal law system by which a judge orders that your license be suspended. The second is the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (DHSMV).

In order to make the process smoother, the very first thing you should do is apply for a hardship license.

  • The application must be submitted within 10 days of the stop.
  • You may first fill out the Request for Eligibility Review form. This form can be found here.
  • Once you fill out the form (including the waiver of the formal hearing), the form must be faxed to 352.334.1597 with a CLEAR copy of your citation and a copy of your application to DUI school (below you will find the information for some local schools).
  • The administration will call you and you will have to pay a $25 filing fee. Once they call you and you complete a phone interview, they will decide whether to issue a hardship license.

Below is the contact information for the Gainesville and Ocala DUI schools:

Gainesville DUI School
North Central Florida Safety Counsel
3710 NW 51st Street, Suite A
Gainesville, FL 32606
Phone: 352-377-2566

Ocala DUI School
West Central Florida Driver Improvement, Inc.
225 NE 14th Street
Ocala, FL 34479
Phone: 352-622-6991

The second step would be to fight your criminal charges. The charges can be fought in a number of ways, and which option you go with is a discussion for you to have with your attorney.

How Can a DUI Attorney Help Me?

A DUI (Driving Under the Influence) attorney can provide valuable assistance if you are facing DUI charges. Here's how they can help you:

  • Legal Expertise: DUI attorneys have a deep understanding of the relevant laws, regulations, and procedures in your jurisdiction. They can assess your case, including the evidence against you, to identify any potential weaknesses or legal issues that could be used in your defense.
  • Protection of Rights: Your attorney will ensure that your rights are protected throughout the legal process. This includes making sure law enforcement followed proper procedures during your arrest and that your constitutional rights were not violated.
  • Negotiation: DUI attorneys can negotiate with prosecutors on your behalf. They may be able to secure a plea bargain with reduced charges or penalties, such as a lesser sentence or alternative sentencing options, like alcohol education programs.
  • Court Representation: If your case goes to trial, your attorney will represent you in court. They will present your defense, challenge evidence, and cross-examine witnesses to build the strongest case in your favor.
  • Evidence Assessment: Attorneys can carefully review the evidence against you, including breathalyzer or blood test results, field sobriety tests, and police reports. They may identify inaccuracies or issues that can be used in your defense.
  • Legal Strategy: DUI attorneys can develop a strategic defense plan tailored to your specific case. This may involve challenging the validity of evidence, questioning the legality of the traffic stop, or disputing the accuracy of chemical tests.
  • Minimization of Penalties: If you are convicted, a DUI attorney can work to minimize the penalties you face, such as fines, license suspension, mandatory alcohol treatment programs, and potential jail time.
  • Knowledge of Local Courts: Experienced DUI attorneys are familiar with the local legal system, judges, and prosecutors. This knowledge can be valuable in understanding how your case is likely to be handled and developing an effective defense strategy.
  • Legal Advice: Your attorney can provide you with legal advice, explaining your rights and options, and helping you make informed decisions about your case.
  • Post-Conviction Assistance: If you are convicted, your attorney can help you with post-conviction matters, such as appealing the decision or seeking alternatives to jail time, like probation or house arrest.

It's important to consult with a DUI attorney as soon as possible after being charged to maximize the benefits they can provide. They can guide you through the legal process, protect your rights, and work toward the best possible outcome for your case, whether it's a reduced sentence, dismissal of charges, or an acquittal.

Were You Arrested for DUI in Marion County?

We understand that mistakes can be made and that you are now facing a nightmarish ordeal. When you obtain the legal counsel of Dunham & Ingram, you can rest assured that we will work diligently in your defense, seeking to mitigate the consequences you may be facing. It is important that you put your trust in a defense attorney who has the experience and tenacious capacity to aggressively represent you in your time of need.

Contact a Marion County DUI lawyer from Dunham & Ingram today or fill out a case evaluation form as soon as possible to learn more about your defense options.

Commonly Asked Questions

What are the potential consequences of a DUI conviction in Florida?

A DUI conviction in Florida can result in jail time, fines, license suspension, probation, community service, DUI school, and vehicle impoundment. The severity of the penalties depends on the circumstances of the case and whether it is a first offense or a subsequent offense.

What is the legal blood alcohol content (BAC) limit in Florida?

In Florida, it is illegal to operate a motor vehicle with a blood alcohol content (BAC) of 0.08% or above. If your BAC is above the legal limit, you can be charged with a DUI.

What is the difference between drunk driving and impaired driving?

Drunk driving refers to operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol, whereas impaired driving can refer to operating a motor vehicle under the influence of alcohol, drugs, or any other substances that impair your ability to drive safely.

What are the penalties for multiple DUI convictions in Florida?

The penalties for multiple DUI convictions in Florida can include increased fines, longer license suspensions, mandatory ignition interlock device installation, mandatory alcohol or drug treatment programs, and potential felony charges.

What is a DMV hearing in relation to a DUI case?

A DMV hearing, also known as an administrative hearing, is a separate legal proceeding from the criminal case that determines whether your driver's license should be suspended or revoked due to a DUI arrest. It is important to request a DMV hearing within a specific timeframe to protect your driving privileges.

Helpful Resources

Benefits of Choosing Dunham & Ingram LLC:

  • Experienced

    We have experience handling all types of misdemeanor and felony cases.

  • Committed

    We are committed to tirelessly protecting your rights and interests.

  • Aggressive

    We have extensive courtroom experience and know how to fight for you in trial.

  • Helpful

    We will answer any questions and make sure you understand your rights and options.