Arrested for DUI in Massachusetts?
Any DUI charge in Massachusetts can impact the rest of your life. As Massachusetts is a lifetime look-back participant, an Operating Under the Influence conviction is never expunged from your record and the penalties compound with each new conviction. As a result, a third OUI offense is always charged as a felony, as is a first or second offense that involves a serious injury or death.
In Massachusetts, you are not legally obligated to take a field sobriety test when you have been pulled over by law enforcement. In most cases, the officer will arrest you if you refuse to take the test, but your refusal cannot be admitted into evidence. By contrast, failing a field sobriety test will be used against you at trial. In either instance, it is important that you immediately contact a Boston felony OUI defense attorney at DiBella Law Offices, P.C., at (978) 327-5140. We have nearly two decades of experience defending drivers charged with felony OUI.
Potential Penalties for Felony OUI
The minimum penalties for a third-offense felony OUI will include:
- At least 180 days in jail
- A fine ranging from $1,000 to $15,000
- Loss of driver’s license for 8 years
In the case of fourth and fifth OUI convictions, the minimum prison time is one and two years respectively. The fines for a fourth conviction range from $1,500 to $25,000, and for a fifth conviction range from $2,000 to $50,000.
If a driving under the influence accident results in the death of another person, the driver will be charged with Operating Under the Influence Causing Death (OUI – Manslaughter), which is the most serious OUI offense in Massachusetts. The minimum penalty for a conviction of OUI – Manslaughter is:
- At least 5 years in prison
- Loss of driver’s license for 15 years
The maximum in this case is 25 years in prison and the loss of your driver’s license for life, as well as a $25,000 fine.
A felony OUI conviction is going to have a lasting impact on your life. Unlike other crimes that are intentional, an OUI charge can simply be the result of a poor choice on a particular day. A strong defense lawyer will work diligently to have the charges reduced. Demonstrating the right facts to the court can be the difference between minor penalties or years spent in prison. Having a lawyer can also make a huge difference in your ability to be granted driving privileges to allow you to travel to and from work.
Even in the event of a failed field sobriety test, we can challenge the results based on your age, weight, level of fitness, or even a medical condition that limits your ability to complete the test. Also, the test might not have been administered properly or scored correctly. Our experienced defense team will know how and why to challenge your field sobriety test results.
Don’t pay for a single mistake by letting it ruin the rest of your life. Contact the experienced Massachusetts criminal defense lawyers at DiBella Law Offices, P.C., at (978) 327-5140 for a free consultation to discuss your options when facing felony OUI charges.