You’ve probably seen the no drinking and driving ads on TV, especially around the holidays. New York State’s motto is: 0.08, don’t blow it. Alaska’s BAC limit is the same as NYS: 0.08. Did you know that in 2007, 25 people were killed in Alaska due to a driver (or drivers) having an illegal BAC (blood alcohol content) level? In these cases, the drivers should have had the best DUI attorney possible to defend them. However, it’s useful in any case where alcohol is involved to have a DUI defense attorney.
Alaska does have one of the highest DUI rates nationally; in 2002, Alaskan police arrested about 8 people out of 1000 on DUI/DWI charges. If you’re wondering: How much is a DUI attorney? Can I afford DUI attorney fees?, the answer is yes. Remember that you don’t have to be drunk to receive a DUI–having your BAC over the legal limit is enough, even if you don’t feel the effects of the alcohol. The hassle of having your license suspended and (depending on if you’ve had previous DUIs) the monetary fines often outweigh the initial costs of hiring a DUI attorney.
Naturally, you also want to find the best DUI attorney for your case and that may often depend on your budget range and how serious (or multiple) your offense was. The best DUI attorney will help you mitigate penalties or consequences handed down by the court and know the process inside and out. In Alaska, even your first DUI offense can get you up to 72 hours of jail time, up to $1,500 in fines, and a suspension of your license for a minimum of 90 days. A fifth offense can can get you anywhere from 240-365 days in prison, up to $10,000 in fines (the minimum being $6,000), and a suspension of your license for a minimum of five years. A DUI defense attorney could potentially bargain to lower these penalties.
A DUI defense attorney is especially important if you do injure another person while under the influence. The person injured will most likely hire a personal injury attorney and file for personal injury compensation, in order to pay for medical bills or damage done to their vehicle. You want to be able to have someone represent you in court who knows how the system works. Even if you think: That won’t happen to me. I’m a safe driver, even if I’ve had a couple of drinks, you should know that according to statistics from 2010, in the United States., 4280 pedestrians were injured and about 70,000 were killed in car crashes. In 2009, in Alaska alone, there were almost 35,000 people involved (either as the driver under influence, passengers in the car, other drivers and passengers, or pedestrians) in traffic crashes.