Having an accident is never good; having an accident when you are intoxicated is worse. Because you have already committed a criminal act by getting behind the wheel after drinking alcohol or using drugs, you are likely to be presumed to be at fault for the collision. If someone else is injured or killed in the crash, you are in serious trouble. Whatever the specific circumstances, if you have had an accident while under the influence in Arizona, you need an excellent DUI defense attorney like one of those at Arizona Lawyers.
For over 20 years, our practice has successfully defended clients against charges of DUI in Phoenix, Scottsdale, Mesa, Tempe, Glendale, and throughout the state of Arizona. We have comprehensive knowledge of state laws regarding DUI accidents and well-honed strategies designed to defend clients who come to us for help at a frightening, often desperate, time in their lives. The consequences of DUI itself are severe, becoming harsher the higher your blood alcohol level (BAC) is. If convicted of DUI, depending on the severity of the circumstances, you can expect to be faced with several or all of the following:
- Increasingly stiff fines, fees and court costs (up to tens of thousands of dollars)
- Jail time, ranging from 10 days to 24 months
- Points on your license
- Increased insurance premiums
- Having to perform community service
- Alcohol/drug screening, treatment, and education program (that you will pay for)
- Ignition interlock device from 6 to 12 months
Things That Make Your Arrest More Problematic
Quite apart from having an accident, exacerbating factors for DUI include:
- Having a child under the age of 15 in your car at the time of your DUI arrest
- Having three or more DUI convictions within seven years
- Driving with a suspended or revoked license
- Driving under the influence after you have already been ordered by the court to use an ignition interlock device
- Being under the age of 21 with any amount of alcohol in your system (zero tolerance)
- Being in a school zone when arrested
If any of the above apply in your case, it is absolutely critical that you have our DUI lawyers at your side. You should also be aware that in Arizona, as in many states, there is an implied consent law on the books. This means that once you obtain a driver’s license, you have implicitly agreed to submit to a breathalyzer or blood test if you are suspected of DUI and stopped by law enforcement. If you refuse to submit to BAC testing, you will automatically have your license suspended, be fined and be subject to other penalties.
DUI Accidents in Arizona May Be Considered Assault or Vehicular Manslaughter
If you are arrested for DUI in Arizona after an accident involving bodily injury or fatality, you can be charged with assault or vehicular manslaughter in spite of the fact that our state has no express statute for this offense. This is because the state of Arizona considers a car to be a deadly weapon or dangerous instrument when you intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly
cause injury while driving under the influence. Vehicular manslaughter charges are typically defined as “reckless.” Though you may not have had any intention to harm anyone, DUI makes you responsible since you knew the increased risk of causing an accident while under the influence but still made the choice to drive.
How Arizona Lawyers Will Defend You After a DUI Accident
As experienced DUI attorneys, the Blischak team will evaluate your case with an open mind. Though your case no doubt has aspects in common with others we have dealt with, it also most certainly has aspects that are unique. We will investigate thoroughly by examining police records, speaking to witnesses, examining medical reports, and listening very carefully to your account of the collision.
Defenses Arizona Lawyers May Use To Defend You
Defenses we have used in the past include:
- Proving that you were not intoxicated (although your alcohol level was measured at more than 0.08 percent) by establishing that a urine, blood or breath test was administered improperly, that a device used in testing was not calibrated correctly, or that your specimen was mishandled or contaminated
- Demonstrating through medical evidence that your balance issues, poor coordination or slurred speech are attributable to a medical condition rather than to intoxication
- Negotiating a settlement with the injured party who would rather have you out of jail and working so you can pay compensation than see you incarcerated
- Finding flaws or irregularities in police procedure at the time of arrest
- Proving that although you were DUI, you were not the party responsible for the accident
Also, there is always the possibility that we will use an innovative defense to protect your interests based on the specifics of your case.
Involved in a DUI Accident? Arizona Lawyers Will Protect Your Future
Our talented DUI attorneys are here to help. We will not judge you; we will treat you with dignity and respect. Our goal is to minimize the charges and penalties you face, help you avoid jail time and preserve your license. No matter what the particulars of your arrest, it is essential that you contact Arizona Lawyers promptly so we can take charge before you inadvertently dig yourself a deeper hole. Though you are probably feeling worried and confused, we are at the top of our game, well aware of exactly how to proceed to provide you with the best possible outcome.