Attorney Michael D. Litman Illustrates DWI Consequences for New York Drivers

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Defense attorney Michael D. Litman lists the top five consequences of driving while intoxicated in the state of New York.

Law Office of Michael D. Litman

Getting arrested for driving while intoxicated (DWI) in New York State can have an affect on more than just your liberty, your license and your wallet.

Attorney Michael D. Litman lists the top five DWI consequences in the state of New York. “Getting arrested for driving while intoxicated (DWI) in New York State can have an affect on more than just your liberty, your license and your wallet,” said Litman, who focuses his practice on DWI defense. “If you are over the age of 18 and are convicted of a DWI, it will stay on your record as a criminal conviction forever.”

According to Mothers Against Drunk Driving, in 2013, the most recent year statistics were available, 362 people were killed in New York in DWI-related fatalities. This total accounted for approximately 30 percent of all traffic fatalities in New York. That same year, New York lawmakers made improvements to Leandra’s Law to close DWI loopholes.

If convicted of DWI in the state of New York, Litman lists the following five consequences a person will face in addition to a permanent criminal record:

No. 1: Breathalyzer on your car. “The ignition interlock (Leandra’s Law) is one of the most onerous of the conditions of a misdemeanor DWI conviction because it requires you to install and maintain a breathalyzer on any vehicle you operate for a minimum period of six months,” said Litman. “What this means is that you cannot operate any vehicle that does not have the ignition interlock installed on it during the time period mandated by the court.”

No. 2: Jail time/probation. If a driver is convicted of DWI as a misdemeanor, they face up to a year in jail, or up to three years probation. The jail or probation time can be increased if the DWI is a felony.

No. 3: Cost. The minimum fine on a misdemeanor DWI is $500. Additionally, there are mandatory surcharges that could result in paying the court in excess of $895. After the DWI conviction, the DMV will charge its own driver responsibility assessment, which will cost $250 per year for three years.

No. 4: License penalties. “The driver’s license revocation period on a misdemeanor DWI is six months, during which time you may be eligible to apply to the DMV for a conditional license to drive back and forth to work, school or medical appointments,” said Litman.

No. 5: Mandatory classes. The court mandates an alcohol abuse class called the Impaired Driver Program(IDP), formally known as the Drinking Driver Program (DDP), which is organized by the NYS DMV. “The IDP program includes seven weeks of two-to three-hour classroom sessions, totaling sixteen hours, which is required by the DMV, in addition to the court, in order for you to get a driver’s license back after a DWI conviction,” said Litman.

Additionally, if a person has a previous DWI conviction in the ten years before their current DWI arrest, or if they commit a DWI with a child younger than sixteen in the vehicle, they can be charged with a felony. “This would subject you to increased penalties, including prison time,” said Litman. “The moral of the story is, you should consider the consequences of your actions before you drive while intoxicated.”

About the Law Office of Michael D. Litman
The Law Office of Michael D. Litman is a White Plains-based DWI and criminal defense law firm committed to fighting for clients’ rights across the NYC metro area. The firm’s attorneys have spent thousands of hours in court representing hundreds of clients charged with DWI and criminal offenses, and their knowledge and understanding of DWI and criminal law help them build the best defense possible to get charges reduced or dismissed. For more information, please call (917) 554-8231. The law office is located at 203 E. Post Road, White Plains, NY 10601.

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