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Campbell County criminal defense attorney DUI

Whether it be for driving under the influence (DUI), boating under the influence (BUI), or any other criminal defense case, representing yourself is rarely, if ever, a good idea. The qualified guidance and representation of a professional DUI attorney is a much better idea here in Tennessee if you are looking for the least difficult legal process and the most advantageous outcome. Below are the reasons why it is a good idea to avoid representing yourself in a DUI case.

Why Representing Yourself in a DUI Case Is a Bad Idea

In general, representing your own defense in just about any criminal case is a bad idea, but it is an especially negative prospect in consideration of what is required with a DUI case. Here are five reasons you should not represent yourself when facing DUI charges in Tennessee:

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Campbell County criminal defense attorney BUI

While there are many similarities between the penalties for driving under the influence (DUI) and boating under the influence (BUI) according to Tennessee law. While many of these are nearly equal in degrees of severity depending on the offense, there are some minor, subtle differences between the ways that they are penalized. Depending on the details of your case, you might be able to be absolved of the charges or, at the least, receive the lesser of the penalties being considered for that offense. Here are a summary and a comparison of the penalties for DUI and BUI so that you know what to expect if you are charged with any of them in Tennessee.

Tennessee Punishments for DUI and BUI Offenses

Make no mistake: Tennessee authorities will charge you severely for any crimes committed due to drunkenness above the blood alcohol content (BAC) limit, especially when it involves the operation of any type of motorized vehicle. In the cases of driving trucks or cars versus steering boats, the dangers are no less serious. That is why the penalties are severe for both, but there are some minor differences:

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Campbell County criminal defense attorney DUI

Ridesharing with companies like Lyft and Uber have been known to curb cases of DUI in many locations across the states, which is great for those pub-crawlers and bar-hoppers (and, in many cases during these pandemic days, house party-goers as well) looking for an affordable way to get home after having one-too-many drinks, but what happens if your rideshare driver gets pulled over for drunk driving while you are in the car? Are you at all responsible if you do not report it as soon as you notice something amiss in your driver’s behavior and driving? What will the police do? Does this even happen that often? Here is the scoop on rideshare DUIs.

Zero Tolerance

First of all, you should know that both Lyft and Uber have “zero tolerance” policies for drunk driving, meaning they will take swift action against the driver in question. Unfortunately, unless the police actually pull over the driver for suspected drunk driving and charge that driver for it, many passengers can just accuse drivers of drunk driving to get a refund, triggering consequences including possibly innocent drivers losing their jobs with the rideshare company being prohibited from providing services temporarily.  

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Campbell County criminal defense attorney BUI

It is common to wonder why having some drinks with friends out on a boat is as serious as driving a car while impaired. However, evidence shows that boating under the influence (BUI) can be even more dangerous than driving under the influence, and Tennessee law addresses that danger accordingly. If you are facing a BUI charge, do not hesitate to seek the help of an experienced BUI attorney in your area. Depending on the details of your case, a BUI conviction can result in steep punishment. For this reason, make sure you get all the help you need to prepare a proper defense. 

Degree of Impairment While BUI

The Coast Guard’s primary evidence for why BUI can be more dangerous than DUI is that, drink for drink, a boat operator is likely to become more intoxicated than a driver. This observation is supported by the statistic that about one-third of all recreational boating fatalities result from BUI. Because boating fatalities do not necessarily result from crashes, federal law prohibits anyone from operating any type of boat while intoxicated, whether it be a canoe or a large ship.

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Campbell County criminal defense attorney DUI

Although you consent to take roadside blood alcohol content (BAC) tests when a Tennessee DMV issues your driver’s license, there are still reasons that you may wish to contest alcohol breathalyzer tests. A 2019 New York Times investigation discovered that in many cases, alcohol breath test machines are not reliable enough to justify the nearly 1 million Americans arrested each year for driving under the influence (DUI). To gain a deeper understanding of why you and your attorney should consider contesting an alcohol breath test, it is crucial to understand why these machines mislead in so many cases. 

Breath Alcohol Tests

Part of The New York Times' investigation discovered that judges in Massachusetts and New Jersey discarded 30,000 breathalyzer tests in just one year due to human error. Thousands of more drivers have had their tests invalidated, and that alone is a strong reason to consider contesting the results of your BAC test. 

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