Myrtle Beach DUI Lawyer
A DUI in South Carolina is a very serious offense that can damage your reputation, employment, and your entire life. However, it is a criminal charge that our Myrtle Beach DUI lawyer regularly beats. Likewise, you have various options after getting arrested for a DUI. It’s possible to question the evidence against you, reduce your charges, negotiate a lighter sentence, or have your case dismissed.
As you are worrying about what a DUI conviction can mean for you, certain questions are probably swirling in your brain. Will they get my driver’s license? Will I go to jail? That’s where the Myrtle Beach DUI Lawyer at The Law Office of Brad C. Richardson, LLC, comes in. If you have yet to schedule your consultation with our Myrtle Beach DUI lawyer, here’s what you should know if you get arrested for a DUI in South Carolina.
What Should I Expect When Facing a DUI Charge in South Carolina
South Carolina statutes treat DUI offenses as misdemeanors. They do, however, carry very steep penalties. Here’s what you can generally expect after getting arrested for a DUI:
- Unless or until you’re convicted of a DUI, you can still drive. You may need to meet certain requirements and obtain a temporary or provisional driver’s license. But if you refuse breath testing, your license will get suspended immediately unless you request an appeal and win the hearing with the Office of Motor Vehicle Hearings (OMVH) within 30 days of your arrest date.
- You must prepare yourself for the criminal justice process, starting with the arraignment. This involves a judge reading your rights and the charges against you. You must also enter your plea at this time. Depending on the circumstances of your situation, our Myrtle Beach DUI lawyer might be able to negotiate the best possible outcome for your case and avoid a trial.
- If you’re convicted of a DUI, you will face harsh penalties, such as $992 up to $52,245 in fines and surcharges, 48 hours to 25 years in jail, license suspension of up to four years, alcohol or drug education and treatment programs, community service, probation, and the permanent revocation of your license (fourth and subsequent DUI), among others.
- If you killed or hurt another person when you committed DUI, you will be charged with a felony instead of a misdemeanor. You will also face felony charges if it’s your fourth DUI offense, even if you did not hurt or kill anybody.
- You have options to fight a DUI charge. The best way to learn about these options is to discuss your case with our Myrtle Beach DUI lawyer, who can review your case and figure out the most suitable defense strategies suited to your situation.
How Can a Myrtle Beach DUI Lawyer Help My Case?
It’s entirely possible to fight a DUI charge. Usually, even DUI cases with seemingly solid evidence may help the defendant’s case. To fight a DUI charge, the Myrtle Beach DUI lawyer at The Law Office of Brad C. Richardson, LLC, may utilize various strategies, such as:
- Looking for any inconsistencies in the testimony of the arresting officer or violation of your legal rights during the arrest.
- Audio or video evidence that contradicts the evidence against you.
- Comparing witness statements, if available.
- Improper use of breath tests or field sobriety tests (FSTs).
- Explanations for failed FSTs or breath tests.
- Inaccurate calibration, bad data, or glitches from the breathalyzer or chemical tests.
- Insufficient certification or licensing from the lab technicians that performed the chemical tests.
Our Myrtle Beach DUI lawyer can use one or more of these strategies to potentially have certain evidence against you thrown out and weaken the case against you. They can be utilized to win your case during or before the trial. If the prosecution sees the weakness in their case or is not sure that they can win, they may even drop the DUI charges against you instead of wasting time in a trial.
Alternatively, the prosecution might offer you a plea deal, which is an offer to lower your charges or sentence to something less serious, or recommend that the judge orders a reduced sentence. This could potentially end your DUI case without risking a harsher sentence. These strategies can also be used to make the jury doubt the prosecution’s case against you if your case advances to trial.
It’s also worth noting that to win a DUI case, you don’t necessarily need to prove your innocence. Your lawyer just needs to create reasonable doubt about the case against you, and our Myrtle Beach DUI lawyer knows exactly how to do this.
Does a DUI charge apply to illegal drugs or prescription medicines?
Yes. Under the law, you can be charged with a DUI if you were driving under the influence of alcohol, drugs, or other substances that impaired your driving ability appreciably and materially.
Will my driver’s license get suspended if I get arrested?
Not necessarily. However, the DMV will suspend your license if your BAC was 0.15% or higher or you refused the breath test.
Does DUI apply to boats and other watercraft?
Technically, yes. However, a DUI involving watercraft in South Carolina is called a BUI or boating under the influence.
Do I really need a DUI lawyer?
You’re not legally required to do so, but it’s strongly recommended that you do. A Myrtle Beach DUI lawyer will help you navigate your DUI case from beginning to end, from reviewing the evidence against you to getting your license back, negotiating with the prosecutor, and taking your case to trial if needed.
Seek Legal Guidance From our Seasoned Myrtle Beach DUI Lawyer Now
Without a solid defense strategy, a DUI can easily wreak havoc on your life. As a former prosecutor with more than 20 years of experience, our Myrtle Beach DUI lawyer, Brad C. Richardson, knows the ins and outs of the local criminal court system and will do everything they can to fight the charges against you. Reach us online or call The Law Office of Brad C. Richardson, LLC, to arrange your case evaluation.