DUI Defense Lawyers Helping Clients in Las Vegas Avoid Conviction
While the popular tourism tagline for our fine metropolis of Las Vegas is “What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas,” the sad reality is that some misdeeds in Sin City will follow you home. If a driver operates a motor vehicle with a blood alcohol content level of .08% or higher, or while under the influence of a prohibited controlled substance in their blood, they may face a DUI arrest. If this happens, that person will almost certainly require a DUI attorney who can effectively fight their case to ensure they avoid the most devastating and financially disastrous consequences that can follow a DUI conviction in Clark County, Nevada.
If you find yourself in a position of facing DUI charges while visiting or living in the Las Vegas area, reach out to the law office of Yampolsky & Margolis for help. Our experienced DUI lawyers have the knowledge of the law that will make us a strong ally in your corner to give you the defense you deserve. Call us today at (702) 385-9777 for a free initial consultation to see how our talented legal team can help you avoid a serious criminal record and, in some cases, get the DUI charges dismissed.
What is Nevada Law Regarding DUI Charges?
NRS 484C.400 is the statute, or more appropriately, statutory scheme, which criminalizes a DUI charge in the Silver State. The various subparts and provisions provide punishments, sentences, and applicable fines for a first-time, second-time, and third DUI within a 7-year period applicable to enhanceable misdemeanors (currently only DUI arrests and Domestic Violence offenses). This statute provides for some consistency and clarity in the punishments provided for a first-time misdemeanor DUI charge, whether the drunk driving was cited in Henderson, North Las Vegas, on the fabulous Las Vegas Strip, or in a more outlying area of Clark County, such as Mesquite.
NRS 484C.400(a) prescribes the following statutory penalties for a first-time misdemeanor DUI (within a 7-year timeframe applicable to enhanceable misdemeanors): (1) a minimum of 2 days up to a maximum of 6 months in the city and/or county jail; (2) 48-96 hours of community service; (3) DUI Class; (4) Victim Impact Panel; (5) Alcohol/Drug treatment/evaluation, in the event the BAC was at 0.18 or above. Additionally, a fine of not less than $400 nor more than $1,000 will be imposed. A Mandatory Specialty Court Fee of $100 will also be levied.
NRS 484C.400(b) prescribes the following statutory penalties for a second-time misdemeanor DUI (a 2nd offense within a 7-year timeframe applicable to enhanceable misdemeanors): (1) a minimum of 10 days up to a maximum of 6 months in the city and/or county jail; (2) DUI Class; (3) Victim Impact Panel; (4) Alcohol/Drug treatment/evaluation, in the event the blood alcohol concentration (BAC) was at 0.18 or above. Additionally, a fine of not less than $750 nor more than $1,000 will be imposed. A Mandatory Specialty Court Fee of $100 will also be levied.
NRS 484C.400(c) prescribes the following statutory penalties for a third-time, Category B Felony DUI (a 3rd offense within a 7-year timeframe applicable to enhanceable misdemeanors): (1) a minimum of 1 year up to a maximum of 6 years in the Nevada Department of Corrections; (2) This offense if Non-probational except in certain circumstances, namely participation in an Intensive Alcohol Monitoring Program known in Nevada as the Serious Offenders Program. This is a program that spans up to three years, requires complete alcohol abstinence, and features frequent urinalysis testing on a random basis. Additionally, a fine of not less than $2,000 nor more than $5,000 will be imposed.
When facing these serious consequences, you may feel alone and afraid. But with DUI attorneys on your side, you can have a great chance of getting your driving privileges restored and being able to avoid the devastating results of a drunk driving charge. This isn’t something you should attempt on your own, so reach out to us today and let us advocate on your behalf and aggressively defend your rights.
Why Would an Individual Be Convicted of Drunk Driving in Nevada?
The most common way Nevadans and visitors are likely to be prosecuted for and convicted of a DUI offense will be on the basis of a BAC test result. These tests are usually conducted via breath and/or blood, and evidence of a concentration beyond the legal limits above-described can result in a conviction of driving under the influence. This test result provides the District Attorney and/or City Attorney (in municipal courts of Las Vegas, Henderson, Laughlin, Mesquite, North Las Vegas, and so forth) with evidence of what is known in the law as per se impairment. However, the Nevada DUI statutes have a second subpart that allows for the prosecution and conviction even with a BAC result outside of the required two-hour period for per se treatment. This second method of prosecution is often referred to as pursuing an “impairment theory.”
The individual could also be convicted of a DUI if they were driving under the influence of alcohol to any degree, however slight, if it rendered them incapable of driving safely. This means someone could be convicted of a DUI even if their blood alcohol level was lower than 0.08. This might sound unfair, but that is the law. It is up to the police and the people in power to decide if you were inebriated enough to handle driving a vehicle. While it is an unfortunate situation, one thing that can make it infinitely better is if you have access to experienced DUI attorney in Las Vegas, Nevada to defend your case.
We can give you important details that a regular citizen might not be aware of, that might end up helping them immensely in the future. Our talented DUI attorneys have extensive knowledge of the law and 40 years of combined experience, meaning we may have key insight that can make all the difference in your case. For example, in the case of a DUI, the blood alcohol test results would be inadmissible if the test was taken two hours after the person had been driving, although it appears that the state gets two bites of the apple. In addition to the criminal case, there is a DMV hearing.
The administrative law judge (ALJ) decides whether there is “Clear and Convincing Evidence” that you were driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. While this is a lesser standard of proof beyond a reasonable doubt that is used in a criminal case, the DMV does not care about the 2-hour rule. So you could resolve your DUI case as a non-DUI disposition and STILL lose your license for 90 days based on the ruling of the ALJ.
By visiting your DUI attorney in Las Vegas Nevada beforehand, you would not only be aware of these developments, but you would also be prepared to make a case for your innocence in the best possible way. If your defense is good, there is a good possibility you might just end up walking away scot-free. However, facing charges of driving under the influence of a prohibited substance is not something you should attempt without proper legal representation. Reach out to Yampolsky & Margolis for lawyers who will thoroughly investigate all the evidence and make sure you get the justice you deserve when you are charged with a DUI in Las Vegas.
Can Use of Prescription Drugs While Driving in Las Vegas Lead to DUI Charges?
Another thing people do not realize is that they could be under the influence of a prescription drug even if they had a valid prescription. Many legally prescribed drugs can affect a person’s perception. They can also affect different people in different ways, and there is no real way of knowing how they might affect you or your ability to operate a vehicle. However, if there are no other drugs or alcohol in your system and the prescription drug is in the therapeutic range, we are usually able to resolve your case, so it is not a DUI.
Unfortunately, sometimes the person might have consumed much more than prescribed by a doctor. For example, if an individual had used around 200mg of Hydrocodone, that would be five times the limit prescribed per day, so this would not rebut the presumption that the person was under the influence and that individual may walk away with a DUI offense leading to a license suspension or worse.
Sometimes the prosecutors will be more flexible even if the person was over the prescribed limit of medication, unlike situations where they were under the influence of marijuana, cocaine, heroin, or another illicit drug. This is because many people in the justice system still realize the purpose behind medication and that, at times, it is necessary. Hard drugs, however, are much more difficult to explain to a judge or jury, and if you are caught under their influence, then you will need the services of a quality DUI lawyer in Las Vegas like us. In these cases, having a defense lawyer on your team can make all the difference in seeking criminal justice.
Can Drunk Driving Charges in Las Vegas Lead to Felony DUI Convictions?
One of the most important things to remember about DUIs is that once an individual is convicted of a felony DUI, all subsequent DUIs for the individual will be treated as felonies.
NRS 484C.410 provides that instead of a 1-6, a person so convicted will face the more severe prison sentence of 2-15 years. While less than the applicable penalty for causing a death, as you’ll soon learn, this penalty is still markedly more serious and burdensome than was the applicable sentence for the first felony DUI the individual who sustained a conviction for.
Furthermore, NRS 484C.430 is the Nevada statute used to prosecute the most serious kinds of DUI offenses, DUIs involving death or substantial bodily harm (SBH). These serious criminal charges carry even more severe penalties than the 1-6 years prescribed for a felony DUI that does not result in serious injuries. The penalty is 2 to 20 years in the Nevada State Prison and the sentence is non-probational.
If you are convicted of DUI with death or SBH, you will go to prison. If you were in an auto accident with alcohol in your system and killed someone or injured someone severely enough that there was a broken bone or they had to go to the hospital, you will be charged with DUI with death or SBH. If you have lived through the traumatic experience of causing an accident while under the influence that led to the death or injury of another person, you don’t need the additional stress of dealing with legal prosecution alone. Let our combined 40 years of experience and clear knowledge of the law give you the greatest chance possible to lessen the sentencing with your drunk driving charge.
Should I Hire DUI Lawyers for My Defense Against a DUI Conviction?
A DUI conviction can have severe consequences that stick with a person for the rest of their life, including jail time, a restricted license, and even felony charges. With so much at stake, be sure that you have an experienced DUI attorney in Las Vegas, Nevada, who can help to protect your interests and preserve your rights. DUI cases can be complicated and longwinded, requiring a sane head to filter through all the information. Our attorneys have the know-how and legal experience to identify critical details that might help their clients avoid jail and other negative outcomes in the long run.
At Yampolsky & Margolis Criminal Defense Las Vegas, we offer our clients more than 40 years of combined experience spent fighting for the rights of our clients. We know the law, and we know what it takes to build a powerful defense on your behalf. We are willing to do whatever it takes to ensure that you get the best possible result in the end. We make sure of that because without our clients, what are we anyway?
For more information on how the DUI defense attorneys at Yampolsky & Margolis can help you with drunk driving charges in Las Vegas, please contact us at (702) 385-9777 to schedule a free consultation.