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In NY, Is It Possible To Get A DWI On A Boat?

Winters in New York can be harsh, but when spring rolls around, most people on Long Island will want to enjoy swimming, water-skiing, sailing, and other water-based recreations. It can be great fun – until and unless someone operating a boat becomes intoxicated.

Drugs and alcohol can cause blurred vision, impaired balance, impaired judgment, poor coordination, and slower reaction times. Alcohol is a leading cause of boating accidents, injuries, and fatalities. An impaired boater can be extremely dangerous.

If you are accused of boating while intoxicated, you may not be guilty, but you must have a Long Island DWI lawyer’s help.

WHAT CONSTITUTES BOATING WHILE INTOXICATED?

Here in New York, drinking while you operate a boat is illegal just like drinking when you drive a car. When a boat operator’s blood alcohol content (BAC) level measures 0.08 percent or more, the operator may be charged with Boating While Intoxicated.

Charges For Boating While Intoxicated.

Several crimes in New York are related to BWI:

1. Boating while ability-impaired by alcohol or “alcohol-BWAI.” An alcohol-BWAI charge may be filed if you are boating while impaired in any way by alcohol.

2. Boating while ability-impaired by drugs or “drug-BWAI.” A drug-BWAI charge may be filed if you are boating while impaired in any way by drugs.

WHAT ABOUT COMMERCIAL AND UNDERAGE BOAT OPERATORS?

If you are operating a boat commercially in New York waters, a BAC measurement of 0.04 percent will trigger a BWI charge.

If you are under 21 years old, “zero tolerance” for alcohol is the rule in New York, and you may be charged with “underage BWI” for operating a boat with a BAC level as low as 0.02 percent.

WHAT ARE THE PENALTIES FOR ALCOHOL-BWAI?

Generally speaking, the penalties for a BWI conviction or a BWAI conviction will depend on the offender’s prior BWI, BWAI, DWI (Driving While Intoxicated) and DWAI (Driving While Ability-Impaired) convictions, if any. These are the penalties for alcohol-BWAI:

1. A first alcohol-BWAI offense is considered a violation. A first conviction is punishable with a fine of up to $500 and up to fifteen days in jail.

2. A second alcohol-BWAI offense in five years is a misdemeanor. A second conviction within five years is punishable with a fine of up to $750 and up to thirty days in jail.

3. A third alcohol-BWAI offense within ten years is also a misdemeanor. A third conviction within ten years is punishable with a fine of up to $1,500 and up to 180 days in jail.

All convicted alcohol-BWAI offenders lose their privilege to operate a boat for at least six months.

WHAT ARE THE PENALTIES FOR DRUG-BWAI AND FOR BWI?

Convictions for BWI and for drug-DWAI lead to the same penalties:

1. A first drug-BWAI or BWI offense is a misdemeanor. A first conviction is punishable with a fine of up to $1,000 and up to one year in jail.

2. A second drug-BWAI or BWI offense within ten years is a Class E felony. A second conviction within ten years is punishable with a fine of up to $5,000 and up to four years in a New York prison.

3. A third drug-BWAI or BWI offense within ten years is a Class D felony. A third conviction within ten years is punishable with a fine of up to $10,000 and up to seven years in a New York prison.

FOR HOW LONG CAN YOUR RIGHT TO OPERATE A BOAT BE SUSPENDED?

Boaters convicted of a first-offense drug-BWAI or BWI will lose their privilege to operate a boat for one year. If a boater is convicted a second time of drug-BWAI or BWI within ten years, the privilege to operate a boat is suspended for two years.

Experienced Long Island DWI Attorneys

If you are operating a boat while intoxicated and you cause an accident and/or injuries, you will face additional charges and harsher penalties.

All convicted Boating While Intoxicated offenders must also complete eight hours of boating safety classes.

HOW CAN A DWI LAW FIRM IN NY HELP?

If you are charged with any alcohol-related crime on Long Island or anywhere in the New York City area, you must be advised and represented by an experienced Long Island DWI attorney.

If law enforcement officers violated your legal rights, or if there are questions about the reliability of the breathalyzer results, a good DWI lawyer may be able to have the charge against you dismissed or reduced to a lesser charge.

Innocents Should Reject Plea Bargain Offers

Of course, if you are innocent, you should reject any plea bargain offer and insist on a trial by jury. If your case goes to trial, your DWI attorney will advocate aggressively on your behalf and will explain to the jurors why they should find you not guilty.

WHAT ARE THE STATISTICS ON BOATING ACCIDENTS AND ALCOHOL?

The Coast Guard tells us that in 2015, across the United States, 4,158 recreational boating accidents led to 626 fatalities, 2,613 other serious injuries, and about $42 million dollars in property damages.

In 2016, fifty percent of the boating fatalities in New York – eleven of twenty-two – were linked to alcohol or drugs.

Recreational boating in the state of New York is a $2 billion industry enjoyed by thousands of our state’s residents and visitors alike. But with nearly 450,000 powerboats registered in this state, there are plenty of opportunities for serious accidents and injuries.

WHAT SAFETY PRECAUTIONS SHOULD BOATERS TAKE?

This spring and summer, and whenever you enjoy the waters around New York City and Long Island, do not forget to take these important safety precautions:

1. Check a reliable weather forecast before you depart.
2. Wear a life jacket and make sure that everyone aboard wears one too.
3. Have flares, a powerful and dependable flashlight, a fire extinguisher, and a marine radio.
4. Do not drink alcohol or use any drugs before you operate a boat or any other watercraft.

WHAT ELSE IS IMPORTANT TO KNOW ABOUT BOATING AND BWI?

Do not even think about operating a boat if you have not completed a boating safety course. If you are the boat owner or operator, you must be proactive about safe boating.

Have a Complete Boating Safety Course.

Still, if you’re charged with BWI in New York because you made a bad decision about drinking – or if you’re innocent and wrongly accused – reach out as quickly as you can to an experienced DWI attorney for the legal help you will need. Your future and your freedom could depend on it.

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Common Reasons For A False Positive On A DWI Breathalyzer Test

If you are stopped in traffic by the police for suspicion of driving while intoxicated (DWI), you may be asked to blow into a breathalyzer device to determine your blood alcohol content (BAC) level. If your BAC level measures at or above 0.08 percent, you may be charged with DWI.

Are breathalyzer tests reliable? Why do breathalyzers so frequently return inaccurate readings? Can you avoid a DWI conviction – even after you fail a breathalyzer exam? And how can a Long Island DWI attorney help you if you are charged with DWI on the basis of a bad breathalyzer test result?

HOW ARE BREATHALYZER DEVICES SUPPOSED TO WORK?

Some people still do not understand that breathalyzer devices are often inaccurate, and that most experts believe that breathalyzer tests are generally unreliable.

Breathalyzers are supposed to calculate the quantity or percentage of alcohol molecules in your breath. Alcohol is absorbed into the bloodstream with no chemical change, so when that blood moves through your lungs, some of that alcohol transfers into your breath and is exhaled.

A breathalyzer supposedly measures the percentage of alcohol molecules in your breath and then supposedly determines how much alcohol is in your bloodstream based on the percentage of alcohol in your breath.

WHY ARE BREATHALYZER RESULTS SO FREQUENTLY INACCURATE?

However, breathalyzer tests can be wrong for a variety of reasons. For example, alcohol and other substances that breathalyzers “read” as alcohol are found in a number of beverages, medicines, foods, mouthwashes, toothpaste, and breath fresheners.

Breathalyzers also frequently malfunction. Breathalyzers must be regularly calibrated and maintained. When a breathalyzer is not properly calibrated and maintained at the correct settings, false readings are likely.

Even when they function properly, breathalyzers may pick up radio frequency interference (RFI). RFI is present whenever law enforcement officers are using their radios.

Officers who administer breathalyzer tests must be trained to use breathalyzers properly and to conduct breath tests according to established guidelines.

FOR WHAT OTHER REASONS ARE BREATHALYZER RESULTS INACCURATE?

1. Administering the breathalyzer test too quickly after someone has been drinking will yield an inaccurate result on the high side. That’s because immediately after drinking, there is still residual alcohol in the mouth and throat.

If you have just walked out of a bar or a nightclub after drinking, a breathalyzer measurement will be inaccurate on the high side. Police officers are supposed to wait at least fifteen minutes before testing a driver if DWI is suspected.

2. Administering the breathalyzer test while the BAC level is still rising may yield an inaccurate result on the low side. For most people, it takes one to three hours for alcohol to be absorbed completely into the bloodstream.

If a breath test is administered while the BAC level is rising, it will not give an accurate assessment of a driver’s actual level of intoxication.

3. Several medical conditions can skew a breathalyzer result including acid reflux, gastrointestinal reflux disease, and heartburn. These conditions may create acid in the mouth, stomach, or esophagus, which raises the BAC level and leads to an inaccurate measurement.

4. Contamination from environmental factors could also affect the result of a breath test. Chemical traces from chemicals used to clean the device or alcohol traces from individuals who previously used the device can lead to an inaccurate BAC measurement.

WHAT’S YOUR TOP PRIORITY IF YOU ARE CHARGED WITH DWI?

If you are placed under arrest and charged with DWI anywhere on Long Island or in New York City because of a breathalyzer test result, put your case in the hands of an experienced DWI lawyer as quickly as possible.

Are you required to “blow” into a breathalyzer if a police officer asks you to? What are your rights if you’re suspected of DWI in the state of New York?

If a police officer has probable cause to believe that a motorist is driving while intoxicated, New York’s “implied consent” law requires the driver to submit to chemical testing – a blood, urine, saliva, or breathalyzer test – if requested.

PRECISELY WHAT IS “IMPLIED” CONSENT?

“Implied consent” is the “implied” agreement that every driver makes when he or she gets behind the wheel in New York. In other words, simply by driving, the law presumes that your consent to a DWI test is implied.

If you refuse to take a chemical test after you have been arrested for DWI in New York, whether or not you are eventually convicted of DWI, your driver’s license may be suspended for one year, and you may be fined $500.

A chemical DWI test is usually conducted after a DWI arrest, but state law also requires drivers in New York to take a breathalyzer test even before being placed under arrest – if a police officer requests it.

If an officer has probable cause to believe that you are driving while intoxicated, he may ask you to blow into a portable breathalyzer device in order to obtain evidence against you. The refusal to take this test – prior to being arrested – is considered an infraction under New York law.

CAN THE POLICE “FORCIBLY” TEST YOU FOR DWI?

In most circumstances, if you refuse to test, the police won’t make you. However, if you’re driving in an accident where someone is killed or seriously injured, refusal may not be an option. The police can get a court order that lets them forcibly take a blood sample for testing.

If you are charged with DWI in New York, you must obtain – immediately – the advice and representation of a qualified DWI lawyer who may challenge the results of a breathalyzer test or any other evidence the state presents against you.

WHAT’S THE BEST WAY TO AVOID DWI TROUBLE?

As you probably suspect, there is one sure way to avoid being charged with DWI. It’s the same advice that you’ve heard so many times before: Don’t Drink and Drive.

Rides for hire aren’t cheap, but they cost a lot less than a ride to the jail, the emergency room, or the morgue. Limos, taxicabs, and rideshare services like Lyft and Uber are available throughout Long Island and New York City twenty-four hours a day, 365 days a year.

Even sleeping on a friend’s sofa or renting a room for the night is better than facing a DWI charge. You must do whatever it takes to avoid a DWI conviction.

Don’t let a DWI charge – or a conviction for driving while intoxicated – take your freedom or ruin your future. When you need a lawyer’s help, get that help immediately. It’s your right.

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DWIs & Conditional Licenses

If you’re convicted of DWAI or DWI in the state of New York, will you be allowed to have a “conditional” driver’s license? The answer is, “it depends.”

A DWAI or DWI conviction in New York suspends your driving privilege, but a conditional license with limited driving permission is available in some cases for some convicted offenders.

WHAT CONSTITUTES DWAI? WHAT CONSTITUTES DWI?

First, let’s distinguish between DWAI – driving while ability-impaired – and DWI, which is driving while intoxicated.

DWI is the more serious offense (a misdemeanor), and many first-time DWI offenders are allowed to plead guilty to DWAI (a traffic infraction), and in return, a DWI defense lawyer can have the charge is dropped.

A New York motorist may be charged with DWAI if that driver’s blood alcohol content (BAC) level is between 0.05 percent and 0.07 percent.

The “legal limit” for DWI in New York is 0.08 percent, so DWAI isn’t a “crime.”

WHAT’S THE PENALTY FOR DWAI?

Still, DWAI is a traffic infraction punishable upon conviction with up to 15 days in jail, a fine of up to $500, and a 90-day driver’s license suspension.

If it’s a second DWAI conviction within five years of the first, the driver’s license suspension is for six months.

Convicted DWAI offenders also must complete New York’s Impaired Driver Program.

When a driver’s BAC level measures at or above 0.08 percent, the charge is DWI.

WHAT IS THE PENALTY FOR DWI?

A first-offense misdemeanor DWI conviction in New York is punishable by up to a year in jail, a fine of up to $1,000, and a six-month driver’s license suspension.

And just like convicted DWAI offenders, convicted DWI offenders must complete the state’s Impaired Driver Program.

A first DWI offense in this state is in most cases a misdemeanor, but a second New York driving while intoxicated charge within ten years will be filed as a felony charge.

WHAT IS REQUIRED TO OBTAIN A CONDITIONAL DRIVER’S LICENSE?

Drivers who need a conditional, restricted driver’s license after a DWI or DWAI conviction must complete the state’s Impaired Driver Program (IDP).

And even if you don’t need a temporary conditional license, IDP must be completed before a driver can regain full driving privileges at the end of a DWI or DWAI sentence.

If you’re charged with DWAI or DWI anywhere on Long Island or in New York City, contact an experienced Long Island DWI lawyer at once, because you are going to need serious legal help.

IDP is a sixteen-hour program scheduled over seven weeks. Depending on a driver’s history and pending charges, some drivers will qualify for a conditional license upon completing IDP.

WHAT DOES A CONDITIONAL DRIVER’S LICENSE ALLOW?

When you are granted a conditional driver’s license in New York during a license suspension period that’s part of a DWI or DWAI sentence, you will be allowed to drive only:

1. to and from work – and while working if your job duties require driving

2. to and from a class at an accredited university, college, or other accredited school that is not a high school, or a state-approved technical or vocational training institution

3. to and from required probation activities and activities required by a drug and alcohol education or treatment program you’ve been ordered to attend

4. to and from necessary doctor or hospital visits for yourself or a member of your household, but you must have a written statement from a licensed medical professional

5. to and from a state motor vehicle office on business related to your driver’s license

6. to and from your child’s school or daycare if your child’s attendance is a condition of enrollment or employment at an accredited university, college, or other school, or a state-approved technical or vocational training institution

WHY WOULD SOMEONE BE DENIED A CONDITIONAL LICENSE?

Even upon completing the IDP, some drivers will not qualify for a conditional driver’s license. The reasons why you may not qualify include but are not limited to these:

1. You have three or more convictions that are alcohol-related in the previous ten years.

2. You have a conviction for homicide, criminally negligent homicide, assault, or criminal negligence, and that conviction arises from a traffic accident or another driving incident.

3. You have a conviction for another crime and that conviction arises from the same incident as the current alcohol-related conviction.

4. You have more than one reckless driving conviction in the last three years.

5. You have two or more driver’s license suspensions or revocations – not linked to the current conviction – in the last three years.

This is by no means an exhaustive list of the reasons why someone with a suspended license may not qualify for a conditional driver’s license.

New York will refuse to grant a conditional driver’s license to any driver with a suspended license if the state believes that driver is an “unusual and immediate” risk to others.

FOR WHAT REASONS CAN A CONDITIONAL LICENSE BE REVOKED?

If you are granted a conditional driver’s license in New York, you must use it carefully and abide by all of a conditional driver’s license’s terms and conditions.

A conditional driver’s license may be revoked for reasons including but not limited to:

1. any failure to attend, participate in, or meet the requirements of a court-ordered drug and alcohol education or rehabilitation program

2. a conviction for any new drug or alcohol-related traffic offense

3. a conviction for speeding, reckless driving, racing, following too closely, or other particular traffic violations occurring while driving with the conditional license

In fact, if the state receives or finds anything which suggests that you should not have a conditional license, it will probably be revoked.

WHAT IF YOU ARE NOT A RESIDENT OF NEW YORK?

If you’re convicted of DWAI or DWI in New York, but you’re not a resident of the state, what is your option? New York cannot grant any kind of driver’s license to a non-resident. For example, if you are a resident of California, you would need the help of a California DUI defense attorney to get you their form of conditional license.

However, you may be eligible for a “conditional driving privilege” with terms and conditions similar to a conditional license.

HOW CAN YOU AVOID THIS TYPE OF LEGAL TROUBLE ENTIRELY?

Clearly, and for a number of reasons, no one wants to be convicted of DWI or DWAI, but there’s only one certain way to avoid that kind of legal trouble.

Don’t Drink and Drive.

If you are charged with DWI or DWAI in New York City or on Long Island, more than your driver’s license will be at stake. Your freedom and your future will also be at risk.

You’ll need immediate legal help. You’ll need to contact an experienced and trustworthy Long Island DWI lawyer who will protect your rights and fight aggressively for justice on your behalf.

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What You Must Not Do

Whether you are charged with a DWI or arrested in New York City or Long Island, you must discuss your case with a knowledgeable Long Island DWI defense attorney as quickly as possible. It’s imperative to fight a DWI charge with assistance from a well-known defense lawyer who can aggressively challenge the state’s case against you. While you must retain legal counsel at once, there are also some things you must not do after you’ve been charged with DWI. These include:

  • You must not agree to be interrogated without having an attorney present. Be polite, but insist on your right to remain silent, along with you right to a legal counsel.
  • You must not plead guilty or accept any plea agreement before consulting an experienced DWI attorney.
  • You must not fail to take a DWI charge seriously. A DWI conviction is punishable with jail, fines, probation, a driver’s license suspension, and other penalties. Take the charge seriously.
  • You must not discuss your case with anyone other than your attorney. Do not post even a casual comment about your case on Twitter, Facebook, or comparable forums. That’s precisely where the state will seek incriminating evidence against you.
  • You must not fail to put an experienced Long Island DWI lawyer on the case immediately after a DWI arrest. It’s imperative to begin gathering evidence and questioning witnesses as quickly as possible.

Now that you know what not to do, learn what you should do when you’re stopped by a police officer.

Exercise Your Rights

It’s imperative for every American to know, understand, and exercise our legal rights. Knowing your rights and exercising them properly can directly affect the outcome of any criminal charges filed against you, especially if the police in New York arrest you for DWI. After an arrest, law enforcement officers must read your “Miranda” rights before any questioning is allowed. That is, they must explain your right to remain silent, your right to an attorney, and the state’s obligation to provide an attorney if you cannot afford one. If you’re charged with DWI in New York, don’t accept court-appointed counsel or try to represent yourself. Instead, call an experienced DWI defense attorney in Long Island and get the effective legal representation you really need.

If you get a DWI, you have the right to remain silent. Be polite. Give the officer your name, address, date of birth, driver’s license, registration, and social security number. These are “routine” inquiries that are not considered formal interrogation. But you should avoid answering any other questions, providing information or evidence, making any statements, or signing any forms until you have the advice of an experienced DWI defense attorney. We all want to explain ourselves and be understood, but in this situation, let your attorney do the talking. Be polite but firm when you request an attorney. If your Miranda rights are violated, it could – possibly – result in the DWI charge against you being dropped.

When the police arrest you for DWI, they are not your friends. It’s in their interest to compile sufficient evidence against you to win a conviction. If you receive a DWI charge on Long Island or anywhere in one of the five boroughs, speak to an experienced DWI defense attorney in the Long Island area. DWI is treated as a serious charge in New York, and you’ll need a good DWI attorney so you can fight for justice.

Avoid DUI Charges

You can take some practical steps to protect yourself and your friends and acquaintances from driving while intoxicated. Whenever you host a gathering where people will be drinking, remind them to arrange in advance for a sober driver. Be sure to provide soft drinks or juices and water, and make certain that your guests all leave safely. Don’t hesitate to take someone’s keys if you need to – that person will probably thank you the next day. If you, your friends, or any of your family members are arrested for DWI in New York City or Long Island, promptly speak with a knowledgeable DWI attorney in Long Island.

If you’re going to be away from home for a night out or for a specific event, New York and Long Island probably have more public transportation available than any other location in the world. Buses, subways, taxis, limo companies, and ride-sharing services are everywhere, and most can be accessed 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Riding a bicycle is not a good option. Although there’s no specific law in New York against “bicycling under the influence,” it’s quite dangerous, and you could still be charged with a misdemeanor such as public intoxication or reckless endangerment.

There are also steps you can take to avoid getting pulled over for suspicion of a DWI. A police officer is likely to pull you over if you have lights that don’t work, have a dark tint to your car window, throw cigarette butts out of your window, or have a violation relating to your license plate. So you can stay away from this type of trouble, be sure that everything on your car is in order.

Everyone who drives while intoxicated is taking an unnecessary and dangerous risk. Any time you get behind the wheel after drinking, you could be arrested, injured, injure others, or worse. If you are arrested for DWI in Long Island or New York City, retain legal representation as soon as possible. A good DWI lawyer will keep your legal rights in mind and explain the legal process as it unfolds, will advocate vigorously for justice on your behalf and may offer New York based resources or other programs to help overcome life events. If you face a DWI charge in New York City or Long Island, consult at once with a reputable Long Island DWI attorney.

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DWI And The Holidays

The leaves are falling and the holidays are approaching, so New York drivers can expect the enforcement of DWI laws to become more aggressive, as it always does this time of year. If you are charged with DUI in Queens or in any of the five boroughs over the holiday season, don’t expect the courts to be filled with the holiday spirit. They won’t be. Expect no leniency. You’re going to need legal help just like any other time of the year. After a DWI arrest, immediately arrange to consult with an experienced Long Island DWI attorney who can fight aggressively to protect your rights and interests.

Here’s what you must know about DUI in New York this season:

  • Understand that a designated driver is someone you are trusting with your life. Make sure it’s the right person. Limos, taxis, and buses are available all over Queens, and many operate 24/7/365. Also check out the ride-sharing services and apps such as Uber and Lyft.
  • Bicycling might not be a good alternative. Bicycling while intoxicated is not specifically against the law in New York, but it’s never a good idea, it’s dangerous, and you could still be arrested for public intoxication or public endangerment.

A driving while intoxicated charge is not an automatic DWI conviction, but you will require the counsel of an experienced DUI lawyer who will challenge the state’s case against you and fight vigorously for justice on your behalf. During the holiday season and every season, if you are arrested and charged for driving while intoxicated in Queens or anywhere in the New York City area, act promptly. Make the call at once to speak with an experienced Queens DUI attorney.

Regardless of how well or poorly you may be driving, it is against the law to drive with a blood alcohol content (BAC) level above 0.08 percent. Don’t think that if you have only one drink every hour, you can legally drive. You can’t. Frankly, you probably shouldn’t drive until the next day after anything more than a 12-ounce beer or 6-ounce glass of wine. Even one beer or one glass of wine can put you over the limit if you weigh a hundred pounds or less. Of course, the wisest approach is no drinking whatsoever if you’re going to drive, and calling a cab or having a designated driver if you’re going to drink.

If you are charged with DUI anywhere in the state of New York, it’s imperative to speak with an experienced DWI attorney as quickly as you can. Your attorney may dispute the arresting officer’s testimony, the DWI test results, or the legality of your traffic stop and arrest. Being charged with DUI doesn’t mean that you’ll be convicted and sentenced, but it does mean that you need to retain the advice and services of an experienced DUI defense attorney. If you face a DWI charge in the state of New York over the holidays or in the new year, speak at once with an experienced Queens DWI lawyer.

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Probable Cause And DWI Checkpoints

Although the courts in twelve states do not allow police agencies to conduct sobriety checkpoints, sobriety checkpoints are legal here in New York. The police officers at sobriety checkpoints conduct “random” traffic stops to determine if drivers are too intoxicated to drive. If you are stopped by police officers at a New York DWI checkpoint, and if you are then arrested and charged with driving while intoxicated, you are in grave legal trouble. You’ll need to retain as quickly as possible the advice and services of an experienced Long Island DWI attorney.

Since the police need “probable cause” to stop you, how can DWI checkpoints be legal? The U.S. Supreme Court has for all practical purposes created a loophole and made an exception for sobriety checkpoints, reasoning that the state’s obligation to protect the public outweighs the imposition upon drivers and the limited violation of their privacy rights. Still, the police must follow strict guidelines while conducting a sobriety checkpoint. The times and locations of checkpoints must be made available to the public in advance, and signs must be posted informing drivers that they are approaching a DWI checkpoint. Weekends and holidays are typically when the police conduct sobriety checkpoint operations.

In New York, a conviction for driving while intoxicated can lead to some harsh penalties that follow you for the rest of your life, and if you’re charged with DWI, you’ll need to contact an experienced Long Island DWI defense attorney immediately. In New York, the legal blood alcohol content level (BAC level) for drivers is 0.08 percent. Plenty of New Yorkers can drive safely at that exceptionally low level of intoxication, but some drivers can’t. If you are able to drive safely with a BAC level of 0.08 percent, it’s just too bad. Everyone has to comply with the same law. The laws are different in New Jersey, so it is best to advise a New Jersey DWI Attorney.

Even if you’ve had “just one” in New York and you’re under the legal limit for DWI, you could still be charged with DWAI (driving while ability impaired). DWAI is a traffic infraction rather than a misdemeanor or a felony, but if you’re charged and convicted, you could still face some very disagreeable consequences. You can be charged with DWAI if your BAC level measures between 0.05 percent and 0.07 percent and you are unable to operate a motor vehicle safely. A conviction for DWAI could send you to jail for 15 days and cost you up to $500.

If you are stopped and arrested for driving while intoxicated at a DWI checkpoint, politely exercise your right to remain silent, and then obtain legal help as quickly as you can. An experienced DWI lawyer can gather evidence and question witnesses while looking for the flaws and mistakes in the prosecutor’s case against you. Don’t wait to retain legal counsel. If you are charged with DWI in Mineola, Nassau County, Suffolk County, or anywhere in New York City, now or in the future, at a sobriety checkpoint or in any other situation, fight the charge and take your case immediately to an experienced Long Island DWI defense lawyer.

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A Dangerous Combination

Driving while intoxicated in New York means you’ve been drinking alcohol, smoking marijuana or taking prescription drugs. The consequences are the same if you’re convicted, and those consequences can be quite harsh. If you receive a charge with driving while intoxicated in New York City or in Long Island, it’s critical to contact a knowledgeable drug defense lawyer in Long Island as soon as you can.

Marijuana and DWI

While a growing number of states are liberalizing their marijuana laws, concern is also growing across the nation about drivers who mix marijuana and alcohol. Some new research findings from Europe are causing even more apprehensions.

There is simply no question or debate – smoking pot and drinking alcohol together does far more damage to your driving ability than simply consuming either substance exclusively. That’s what researchers in the Netherlands at Maastricht University found when they tested a number of volunteers. When alcohol is combined with marijuana, and even when a driver’s blood alcohol content level is measurably under the legal limit, driving ability is substantially impaired, and a driver’s driving behavior resembles the driving pattern of someone significantly over the legal limit. Combining even small quantities of the two drugs together essentially destroys your ability to drive a vehicle safely.

Prescriptions and DWI

in New York state, if you are arrested and accused of driving while intoxicated, immediately take your case to a well-known and knowledgeable Long Island DWI defense attorney. Understand, however, that a second DWI conviction within ten years of the first is a Class E felony in New York, and if you are convicted, the penalties will a fine from $1,000 to $5,000 and ten days in jail or sixty hours of community service. If you’ve been convicted of DWI more than four or five times, you may be struggling with a dependency issue, and you should probably seek some counseling. Almost anyone can avoid DWI troubles by quitting alcohol. Drivers who don’t drink alcohol do not get charged with DWI – usually.

However, if you are using pharmaceuticals prescribed by your doctor, DWI can get complicated. You can’t just “quit” your prescription medication like you can quit drinking. Your medicine is keeping you healthy, but you probably should not drive while you’re taking it. Many prescription and over-the-counter medicines can impair your ability to drive. Driving while taking these medications could get you charged with DWI. You could be responsible for a collision, serious injuries, and even fatalities.

If your physician has prescribed medications for you or prescribes them in the future, ask the doctor to describe how the drugs will affect you. Always heed the warning labels that accompany medications. If you receive an accusation of a prescription drug-related DWI New York state, it’s like every other DWI charge. Keep in mind that you do have a right to remain silent. Additionally, you have the right to consult an attorney before answering any questions. If you’re charged with a DWI in Long Island, or even in any one of the five boroughs, obtain legal help at once. Let an experienced DWI defense attorney in Long Island represent you and fight on your behalf. After any New York DWI arrest, make the call immediately.

What To Do If You’re Stopped for DWI

If you are pulled over by law enforcement officers in New York City or Long Island because you are suspected of DWI, remain silent and do not consent to a search of your vehicle. You don’t ever have to consent to an unwarranted search; however,  if a cop does, in fact, have a search warrant, you have to cooperate with the search. If the cops want to do a search without a warrant, be sure to insist on a warrant, but remain polite at all times when communicating with the police officer. A cop doesn’t have the right to detain you unless they have a strong suspicion that you committed a traffic violation or crime. Whenever you have doubt, ask the police officer if you are free to leave.

If you are arrested for marijuana-DWI, you’ll need an experienced DWI defense attorney in Long Island who can represent you aggressively while advocating for the best possible result. Even in first-offense, marijuana-DWI cases, New York courts are seldom lenient. Don’t plead guilty – fight the charge. If you are faced with a DWI charge for any reason in the Mineola, Nassau County, Suffolk County area, or anywhere in New York City, contact a knowledgeable Long Island DWI defense attorney promptly.

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Don’t Plead Guilty To DWI

A conviction in New York for driving while intoxicated can dramatically change your life. Do not take a DWI accusation lightly, but don’t just plead guilty and pay the fine either. That might seem like the fastest and easiest way to deal with the matter and move ahead with your life – but it’s not. If you’re charged with DWI in Queens, fight the charge with the help of an experienced Queens DWI defense lawyer. Pleading guilty is not the “fast and easy” way to deal with a DWI charge. If you do plead guilty, you’ll also learn that “moving ahead” isn’t that easy after a DWI conviction.

If you plead guilty to a first-offense DWI in Queens or in New York City, the punishment can include a fine from $500 to $1,000, up to a year in jail, and a six-month driver’s license suspension. If it’s a second offense, you could serve up to four years in prison, pay a $1,000-to-$5,000 fine, and lose your license for a year. After a second conviction, you’ll also be ordered by the court to have an interlock ignition device installed in your vehicle, and you’ll pay for its installation and maintenance.

In order to avoid being charged and convicted of a DUI, it’s important that drivers know about other factors that can cause you to become under the influence. One of those factors is pure vanilla extract. Pure vanilla extract is made by macerating and percolating vanilla beans in a solution of ethyl alcohol and water. In the U.S., for a vanilla extract to be called pure, the Food and Drug Administration requires the solution to contain a minimum of 35 percent alcohol. Carolyn Kesel, 46, of Seneca Falls was charged with felony DWI and felony aggravated DWI after allegedly drinking two small bottles of pure vanilla extract and then becoming lost in a Walmart parking lot. Police said her blood alcohol content level was more than three times the legal limit.

According to authorities, Ms. Kesel was discovered driving erratically at the Walmart, and she told the police that she could not find her way out of the parking lot. The vanilla extract she allegedly consumed had an alcohol content of 41 percent. A breathalyzer measured Ms. Kesel’s blood alcohol content (BAC) level at 0.26 percent, more than triple the legal limit, resulting in the felony charges. If Ms. Kesel had known about the dangerous effects of this extract, perhaps this could have been avoided.

If you’re accused of driving under the influence anywhere in the Queens area, you should know that working with a good DWI defense attorney is the best way to handle the charge. The right lawyer will safeguard your legal rights, explain the law and the options it gives you, and lead you through the legal process to the best possible conclusion of your DWI case. If you’re charged with DWI now or in the future, take the first step toward justice and contact an experienced Queens DWI lawyer immediately.

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Keep The Fun Legal This Summer

Summertime. In New York, it’s the season when everyone wants to enjoy the water, whether they’re swimming, sailing, or pursuing some other water-related recreation. It’s all great fun until there’s an accident and someone gets hurt, or worse. Boating while intoxicated isn’t only against the law – it’s also frequently fatal. Impaired boaters are extremely dangerous, but if you’re arrested and charged with boating while intoxicated, it doesn’t mean that you’re guilty, and you shouldn’t plead guilty. If you’re charged with Boating While Ability Impaired (BWAI) or Boating While Intoxicated (BWI) in New York this summer, obtain legal help and contact an experienced Long Island DWI defense lawyer immediately.

New York Boating While Intoxicated Law

If you didn’t know, drinking while boating is against the law in New York just like drinking and driving. The law states:

  • No person shall operate a vessel upon the waters of the state while his ability to operate such vessel is impaired by the consumption of alcohol.
  • No such person shall operate a vessel other than a public vessel while he has .08 of one per centum or more by weight of alcohol in his blood, breath, urine, or saliva, as determined by the chemical test made pursuant to the provisions of subdivision seven of this section.
  • No such person shall operate a public vessel while he has .04 of one per centum or more by weight of alcohol in his blood, breath, urine, or saliva, as determined by the chemical test made pursuant to the provisions of subdivision seven of this section.
  • No person shall operate a vessel while he is in an intoxicated condition.

If you are suspected of boating while intoxicated, you may be subject to taking a blood alcohol content test. It’s not recommended to refuse a blood alcohol content test. If a boater refuses to take the test to prove their sobriety, they will face penalties for their refusal. These penalties may include a loss of their boating privileges for a specific period of time and a monetary fine.

If a boat operator’s blood alcohol content (BAC) level registers at 0.08 percent or higher, the charge is Boating While Intoxicated (BWI). If convicted, a first-time offender can be fined up to $1,000 and go to jail for up to a year. A lesser charge, Boating While Ability Impaired (BWAI), can be filed if a boat operator’s BAC level registers from 0.05 percent to 0.07 percent. If convicted, a first-time BWAI offender can be fined up to $500 and go to jail for up to 15 days.

Boating while intoxicated or BWI doesn’t become a felony if you have a prior conviction, a child on your boat, or if other drugs are involved or combined with alcohol. Nevertheless, you do not want to be convicted of BWI in New York. If you’re charged with boating while intoxicated in the waters around Long Island or New York City, immediately retain the counsel of an experienced Long Island DWI lawyer.

 

Staying Safe on the Water

Whenever you enjoy the water in and around Long Island, or New York City, always get a weather forecast before departing, always wear a life jacket, and always have a marine radio, flares, flashlights, and a fire extinguisher. Most importantly, don’t drink before operating a boat or any other kind of watercraft. Be proactive about safe boating, and if you’re charged with boating while intoxicated because you made a bad decision – or if you’re innocent and wrongly accused – speak as quickly as possible to an experienced Long Island DWI lawyer.

If you are facing charges for boating while intoxicated, don’t hesitate to contact a knowledgeable Long Island DWI attorney. An experienced Long Island DWI attorney can review the particulars of your BWI or BWAI case and recommend what’s best for you; if the evidence against you is overwhelming, that could mean accepting a plea bargain, but it other cases, it might mean going before a jury and fighting for your acquittal. Enjoy the waterways around New York and Long Island this summer, but please stay safe. If you need legal counsel now or in the future in the New York City or Long Island area regarding a BWI, BWAI, or DWI charge, arrange at once to speak with an experienced Long Island DWI defense lawyer.

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If You Are Stopped For Suspicion of DWI

If the police pull you over for suspicion of DWI while driving in Long Island or New York, cooperate with the officer, but politely refuse to answer any questions. Remain calm, try to smile, and if the officer asks to see your driver’s license, vehicle registration, and proof of insurance, go ahead and produce them. Do not, however, answer any other questions. The officer’s questions are intended to generate answers that can be used as evidence against you, and you have a constitutional right to avoid self-incrimination. If you’re arrested for DWI, you have a right to keep an attorney present during an interrogation. After a DWI arrest, politely insist on that right, and call an experienced Long Island DWI lawyer as soon as you are able.

In New York, when you receive a driver’s license – or when you drive on New York streets if your license is out-of-state – you are implying your consent to take a breath test if a police officer requests it. You can be asked to take a blood test if:

  • an officer sees you violate a traffic law
  • an officer reasonably believes that you are driving while intoxicated
  • you have been involved in a traffic accident

Contrary to popular belief, field sobriety tests are not mandatory and can be refused – for several reasons.  First of all, the tests are not 100% accurate.  They are based on calculations for how average people will react depending on the amount of alcohol or drugs in their system.  Since not everyone is average, the results can’t be depended on as concrete evidence of a wrongdoing.  Second, the tests are conducted often on the sides of busy highways, with the test taker exposed to the elements, under the glare of often bright, flashing lights.  There are simply too many environmental factors in play to depend on the accuracy of a field sobriety test.

However, chemical testing, which uses a sample of a suspect’s blood, breath, or urine to determine whether or not he or she has consumed drugs or alcohol – is not optional.  In New York, the penalty for a chemical test refusal is the loss of driving privileges and a fine, whether or not the results of the test would have come back positive or negative.

Except at a DWI checkpoint, the police must have probable cause to stop you in traffic. The officer must have a plausible reason to believe that you have committed or are committing a crime or a traffic violation. If you can avoid being pulled over in traffic, you can probably avoid a lot of additional legal problems on Long Island and in New York City. If you are stopped in traffic and arrested for DWI, contact our reputable Long Island DWI attorneys immediately. When a driver is pulled over by the police in New York City or Long Island, the officer has probably observed a violation, and it can be something quite trivial. Listed here are some of the leading reasons why you might attract the attention of the police:

  • Your license plate is outdated or not affixed properly to your vehicle.
  • A taillight, headlight, turn signal, or brake light isn’t working.
  • You tossed out a gum or candy wrapper or a cigarette butt.
  • Something is blocking your windshield or hanging from your rearview mirror.
  • You have after-market window tint film on your windows. In New York, only rear windows may be tinted and only if a vehicle has outside rearview mirrors on both sides.

You’ll need to keep any documents you receive from the police – they’re important. And you’ll also want to create some paperwork of your own. Try to piece together precisely what happened in the several hours before you were arrested, and write it all down in your own words. Use your cell phone, social media accounts, and receipts or records of purchases to help you remember where you were, whom you spoke with, and where and why you were stopped and arrested. Return to what you’ve written after a day or two, and you’ll probably remember more. Then share this information with your attorney.

If you are convicted of DWI in New York state, the penalties for a first-offense can involve fines ranging between $500 to $1,000, a with attendance at a victim-impact panel, a yearly $250 “driver responsibility assessment” fee for three years, up to a year in jail and three years of probation. Your driver’s license could also be revoked for up to six months. If you are facing a second or subsequent DWI charge, expect even harsher penalties. The best strategy is simple. Don’t drink and drive. If you plan on driving, avoid drinking entirely, and if you plan on drinking, arrange for a taxi, a limo, a ride-sharing service, or a designated driver. Nevertheless, if you’re charged with DWI in New York City or on Long Island, seek legal help and call a reputable DWI attorney in Long Island as quickly as you can.

Should You Flee?

Running from the law never helps, and running makes it tough for a lawyer to help you. If you are arrested for a DWI charge in Long Island or in any one of the five boroughs – now or in the future – don’t try to run. The smarter strategy is fighting the charge with the assistance of a DWI lawyer in Long Island. An arrest does not mean that you will be convicted, and a good DWI attorney can help. After an arrest for DWI, put your case immediately in the hands of a knowledgeable DWI attorney in Long Island, don’t run from the law, and follow your attorney’s recommendations.

If you are arrested for DWI in Long Island or any of the areas in the five boroughs, remember that an arrest does not necessarily mean a conviction. A good New York DWI attorney has a number of ways to defend you. If you receive a DWI charge – whether it’s now or in the future – contant a knowledgeable DWI attorney in Long Island.

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