Facing a DUI Charge in Florida Is Costly

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Prominent Clearwater DUI defense attorney Kevin Hayslett, of Carlson, Meissner, Hart & Hayslett, PA., explains the annual cost of alcohol-related crashes totals more than $44 billion

Kevin Hayslett, with Carlson, Meissner, Hart & Hayslett, P.A.

A charge of DUI can bring stiff penalties for a first-time offense, including fines, license suspension, and jail time,

More than 1.1 million drivers were arrested for driving under the influence (DUI) of alcohol or narcotics in 2014, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). In the same year, alcohol-impaired crashes accounted for almost one third of all traffic-related deaths. In Florida, in spite of strict laws for driving under the influence, 2.1% of adults in the state reported driving after drinking too much in a CDC study.

“A charge of DUI can bring stiff penalties for a first-time offense, including fines, license suspension, and jail time,” said leading Clearwater DUI attorney Kevin Hayslett of Carlson, Meissner, Hart & Hayslett, P.A. “When you drink and drive in Florida, you not only endanger others and yourself, you also risk your freedom, your finances, and your future.”

Florida drunk driving laws prohibit driving any type of vehicle with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .08% or above, which is the standard measurement used across the United States. This limit is lower for drivers of commercial vehicles (.04%) and virtually non-existent for drivers under the age of 21 (.02%).

“Expenses associated with a DUI conviction include bail, license reinstatement fees, car towing, court costs, higher insurance premiums, DUI education programs, probation fees, drug and alcohol assessment and counseling, transportation costs, and lost income”, said Mr. Hayslett. “And that’s just the beginning.” The CDC estimates the annual cost of alcohol-related crashes totals more than $44 billion.

Under "implied consent" laws in all states, when applying for a driver's license, motorists give consent to field sobriety tests and chemical tests to determine impairment. If a driver refuses to submit to testing when an officer has reasonable suspicion that the driver is under the influence, the driver risks automatic license suspension along with possible further penalties. In Florida, it is considered a misdemeanor to refuse testing if the individual has had their license suspended in the past for refusing a chemical test.

To understand your rights and learn more about the penalties associated with a DUI charge, contact the experienced DUI defense attorneys at the Law Offices of Carlson, Meissner, Hart & Hayslett P.A. Located in Clearwater, Florida, Carlson, Meissner, Hart & Hayslett P.A. has been serving the Tampa Bay area community for more than 45 years, with a proven track record of success and a reputation for excellence. For more information, visit the firm website at http://www.CarlsonMeissner.com or contact the office directly at 877-728-9653.

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MaryAnn Bounacos

Mary Ann Bounacos
@CMLawfirm
since: 10/2010
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Carlson, Meissner Hart & Hayslett, P.A.
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