With summer just around the corner, at some point, you’ll more than likely be ready for a night out, perhaps dining al fresco or attending a fun poker night with your friends. You might have a few drinks, to relax and enjoy some time outside your home. You have too many, though, and before you know it, you could be facing a DWI/DWAI charge for the first time.

A first-time offense

New York has tough DWI/DWAI laws, so even for a first-time DWI offense, you’ll be facing strict penalties. If your blood alcohol level was .08, but below .18, you could be

  • Fined between $500-$1,000
  • Spend up to one year in jail
  • Have your driver’s license revoked for one year

If you’re facing a first-time DWAI (driving while under the influence of drugs) charge, you also could be fined $500-$1,000, spend a year in jail and have your license suspended for six months.

Higher blood alcohol content and higher charges

If you’re BAC is above .18, you will face an aggravated DWI charge. The penalties for that charge are the following:

  • A fine of $1,000-$2,000
  • A maximum one-year jail term
  • A one-year driver’s license suspension

Other ramifications of a DWI/DWAI

Having a DWI/DWAI conviction on your record also comes with other ramifications. For example, you can’t obtain or keep a commercial driver’s license. If you are a member of the military, you likely will face additional consequences that impact your career. A DWI/DWAI conviction also will show up on a background check and could affect your current employment or future employment prospects.

Many facing DWI/DWAI charges don’t realize how important it is to consult an experienced DWI/DWAI attorney. An attorney can review your case and see how you might get your charges reduced or dismissed, keeping a DWI/DWAI off your record.