In the state of Arkansas, you can be charged with a DWI or DUI if you are driving a vehicle while having a blood alcohol concentration, or BAC, of 0.08% or higher. This is true no matter how impaired you actually were or felt. In fact, you could be charged with DUI in Conway, Arkansas even if your ability to drive is not impaired at all. You may also face a DUI charge if your judgment, motor skills, or reaction times are found to have been substantially impaired as a result of alcohol or drugs — either legal or illegal.
Moreover, Arkansas state law maintains that anyone driving a vehicle is understood to have given “implied consent” to being tested for the presence of intoxicants like alcohol in your blood. If you are facing a DUI charge in Conway, Arkansas, you may believe the case against you is open and shut, and you may be wondering how long this charge will appear on your record. Before you make any plans to plead guilty, however, you should work with experienced DUI criminal defense lawyers to try to get those charges reduced or dismissed.
Implied Consent Laws in Arkansas
As mentioned, the state of Arkansas has “implied consent” laws in place which state that anyone driving a car has already given consent to breath, urine, or blood testing in order to determine if they are currently under the influence of drugs or alcohol. This usually takes the form of a breath test like a Breathalyzer, but can be a number of other tests if deemed appropriate. You may refuse to submit to such a test, but doing so will result in an automatic and mandatory suspension of your driver’s license for at least 180 days (in the case of a first offense). In addition, you will not be offered the possibility of driving under a restricted license with the use of an ignition interlock device.
This mandatory six-month license suspension is harsh enough for first offenders, but repeat offenders see suspensions of their license for a period of two years. As criminal defense DUI lawyers serving Conway, Arkansas, let us implore you to think twice about refusing to submit to a breathalyzer test. By taking the test, even if you know you will blow over the legal limit, you will have options to continue driving on a restricted basis. In addition, a BAC above the legal limit does not automatically guarantee a conviction in the DUI charges against you.
What is the Legal Limit for BAC in Arkansas?
In the state of Arkansas, the legal limit for BAC for most drivers is 0.08%. However, drivers under 21 face a far more strict standard, and their legal limit is 0.02%. A driver under the age of 18 who is over this reduced legal limit will almost certainly lose their driver’s license for a period of time.
In the state of Arkansas, a DUI conviction also comes with the possibility of some amount of jail time. For first offenders, a sentence of at least 24 hours or community service must be served. For second offenses, the minimum sentence will be either seven days in jail or 30 days community service, while third offenses see 90 day sentences or 90 days of community service as a minimum. Depending upon the nature of the charges against you, the sentence lengths may vary, and the option to perform community service rather than jail time may or may not be offered.
How Long Do DUI Convictions Remain on Your Record in Arkansas?
If you are charged and convicted of a DUI in Conway, Arkansas, this conviction will remain on your record forever. However, in the state of Arkansas we have something called a “look back period” in which second or subsequent offenses are not considered for sentencing purposes if they are more than five years old. In other words, if your last DUI charge in Conway, Arkansas occurred more than five years ago and you are charged with DUI again, the new charge will be considered a first offense for the purposes of sentencing.
Reach Out to a Lawyer in Conway, Arkansas to Discuss Your DUI Charge
If you are facing DUI charges in Conway, Arkansas, the experienced DUI criminal defense lawyers at Denton & Zachary are here for you. We understand the laws regarding DUI and DWI in the state of Arkansas and will work hard to help you get the best possible result from your case. Contact us today for a free consultation