In our prior articles we reviewed the various consequences of being charged with and convicted of DUI in Florida for the first, second and third offenses. In this article we will look at fourth and subsequent offenses for driving under the influence. Being convicted of a Florida DUI fourth offense is extremely severe and carries with it many permanent consequences. Here’s an overview of what those charged can expect.
FLORIDA DUI FOURTH OFFENSE
A fourth DUI offense in Florida could mean jail time, but many defenses are available to minimize the penalties.
A fourth offense DUI in Florida is a felony charge. The criminal penalties you suffer from a fourth offense will remain with you for the rest of your life. You may have difficulty finding or keeping a job, and may well have difficulty getting the credit you need to buy a house or even get an apartment.
ADMINISTRATIVE PENALTIES FOR A FLORIDA DUI FOURTH OFFENSE
When you are charged with a fourth offense DUI in Florida, you face a mandatoryrevocation of your driver’s license for life. This occurs regardless of how long it’s been since your last conviction, and there is no potential for hardship reinstatement. Fourth offenses are serious business.
Many people don’t realize that you don’t even have to be moving to be charged with DUI. If you pull over to the side of the road to rest or sober up, but are still behind the wheel, you can be charged and arrested for DUI.
FINES AND FEES FOR A FLORIDA DUI FOURTH OFFENSE
Court costs for your fourth offense DUI can reach nearly $600, with fines ranging from $2,000 to $5,000 depending on whether your BAC was under or over .15. Your vehicle will also be impounded for 90 days, and you will be responsible for paying the impound fees to get it out.
JAIL TIME FOR A FLORIDA DUI FOURTH OFFENSE
If convicted of a Florida DUI fourth offense you face a minimum of 30 days in jail. The maximum jail time is 5 years. Ultimately, the amount of ajail time will be dependent upon the facts of your arrest, your prior criminal activity history, and any mitigation reasons for less harsh sanctions.
DRUG AND ALCOHOL TREATMENT
You may also, in the event you are convicted, be required to complete a drug and alcohol treatment program with evaluation, followed by a probationary period of anywhere from 12 months to 5 years.
Remember also that Florida is an Implied Consent state, meaning that police can mandate you to take a breath alcohol test to determine the degree to which you are intoxicated. You can refuse this test, but if you do, you will be arrested and charged with DUI at the highest level possible.
FLORIDA CRIMINAL ATTORNEYS
Since DUI is such serious business and can affect you for the rest of your life, you should never try to defend yourself. Always seek the services of a professional criminal defense attorney. You need someone in your corner who can fight for your rights and make sure that you are protected, and possibly help you avoid some of the more serious penalties that come with these charges.
Our criminal defense attorneys include a former Judge and prosecutor and a lifetime criminal defense attorney. Together, the two have handled thousands of criminal matters, including every degree of misdemeanor and felony offense. They make a tremendous team and have achieved outstanding results for our clients (see results here) and they have received many awards and accolades from other attorneys and judges.