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Understanding the Difference Between DWI and DUI

DWI stands for Driving While Intoxicated or Driving While Impaired, while DUI stands for Driving Under the Influence. Regardless of the term used, both DUI and DWI refer to a driver who is either intoxicated or under the influence of alcohol or recreational drugs, and this also applies to driving under prescription drugs that can impair driving abilities. State laws differ so both terms may mean the same or differently basing on the jurisdiction, wherein both terms can be used to describe a driver who is impaired or drunk driving, and some state laws regard the offense drunk driving as DUI and others call it DWI.

Even if a driver meets the blood alcohol concentration levels for legal intoxication, a driver can still be charged with DUI or DWI in some jurisdictions. With any of these charges, a police officer or traffic officer has every reason to believe that the driver is driving under the influence and may still be charged with impaired driving even if he meets the legal alcohol concentration levels. If you appear to be impaired before the arresting officer, and your breath analyzer is within normal, the officer may still call a Drug Recognition Expert to come into the scene in order to determine if you’re under the influence of drugs to carry out a multi-step evaluation process to entail DWI or DUI. If you’re arrested because of suspected drunk driving, you’ll be placed in a police vehicle and you’ll be taken to the police station or jail. In the police station, you’ll undergo mug shot and your fingerprint will be obtained. Some states allow a driver charged with DUI or DWI to be bailed out the same day, but there are states now that require a driver to be held for a certain period of time until the driver is sober up. You’ll be given a ticket or a summon once you are arrested and it shows the date you have to appear in court to face the charges, and this can be a humiliating experience to other people. There are many instances wherein drivers deny the charges and later on find themselves viewing a video before everyone else in the courtroom failing the field sobriety test taken from the officer’s dashboard camera or taken at the jail where the driver has been processed if ever he denies all the charges and plead not guilty.

You need to be aware that in all states, your driving privileges is loss for a given period of time even in states offering hardship license that allows a driver to work or school during the time a license is suspended or revoked. A DWI or DUI lawyer can help you in facing all these charges, so choose a trusted, reliable, and experienced attorney to best represent you in court.

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