The Difference Between a DUI Charge and a Conviction

People who do not understand how the law works may confuse a driving under the influence (DUI) charge and a DUI conviction, but they are not the same. When you encounter a law enforcement officer and they believe you have been operating a vehicle while intoxicated in any capacity, you may be asked to step outside to be placed under arrest. When this happens you have only been charged with a DUI. To be convicted of a DUI, you must be found guilty in a court of law. 

In the event that you or someone you know has been charged with a DUI, this charge should not be taken lightly. A DUI charge can follow you for life, which may pose problems for you in the future. Fortunately, there are defense teams available to individuals who have been charged with a DUI that can help avoid a conviction altogether. You will need to speak with a criminal defense attorney, such as a DUI criminal defense attorney in Dekalb County GA, who has a clear understanding of the DUI laws in your area and is able to fight for your rights in the courtroom. 

Along with building a defense on your behalf based on the law, there are a few things your attorney will have access to and take into account when building your case. First, they will get the results from any blood tests or chemicals that were drawn from your system. A blood test is the most accurate thing that is administered when police officers charge you with a DUI. By drawing blood, the officers are able to show how much alcohol is in your body. False readings and faulty results are possible, however, should the sample be mishandled or equipment used improperly. A less accurate but one of the most common tools used is a breathalyzer. Breathalyzers are in no way perfect and can display faulty results as well. These tests can provide tainted results for almost any reason.

Field sobriety tests are known to have issues as well. Failing a field sobriety test does not confirm that you are intoxicated. You have a better chance of receiving accurate results if the concern was “are you clumsy?” What’s most unfortunate is, there is almost always one thing that can result in a failed sobriety test. Because of this, if you submit to this testing it is likely you will be charged with a DUI.

These are common defenses used in DUI charge cases, but they are not the only defenses available to you. Be sure to hire a skilled criminal defense attorney with experience in DUI cases so that you are more likely to avoid a DUI conviction, despite the charge. 

Thanks to the law office of Andrew R. Lynch for their insight into DUI charges and convictions.