Most statistics suggest that about 1.5 million people in the US are arrested for drunk driving; that’s one out of every 121 licensed drivers.

A DWI charge means driving while intoxicated or impaired—it’s similar to a DUI charge; in fact, in some states, both refer to the same thing. But regardless of what it’s called in your state, if a police officer charges you with a DWI, you might have to face some serious consequences.

So, if you’re facing a DWI charge, it’s vital to understand your legal options—the better you understand your situation, the easier the process will become for you.

Here are some tips that should help.

Understand Your Rights

If you get pulled over by the police for a suspected DWI, you need to know your rights, one of which is your right to remain silent. You don’t have to tell them even if you’ve been drinking—the only information you should share is your name and address. Anything else you say could be used against you, so it’s best to stay silent.

Additionally, you also don’t have to take any field sobriety tests like visual tests or balancing acts—even a sober could fail these tests; they are designed that way. Also, keep in mind that if the officer doesn’t read your Miranda Rights before questioning you, it can work in your favor.

Cooperate with The Authorities

Exercising your rights doesn’t mean you have to be impolite to the officers charging you with the DWI. They might even arrest you, but given that you’re already in trouble, it makes sense to be on your best behavior with them.

Ideally, do not argue and stay absolutely silent, even if you’re being charged unfairly, in your opinion. Also, don’t ever think about fleeing a DWI traffic stop. This will lead to far worse consequences than a regular DWI.

Learn About The DWI Charge

The specifics of the charge differ from state to state. Make sure you understand what exactly you’re being charged with; it’ll help you understand your options ahead.

Generally, there are two broad types of a DWI, one is more severe than the other. First, a misdemeanor DWI is a person’s first DWI offense, requiring no other significant criminal charges. The other type is a felony DWI which involves a third offense or a DWI offense that has resulted in injuries or death of another person.

Hire An Experienced DWI Lawyer Right Away

A lawyer shaking hands with a client

Being charged with a DWI offense is a nerve-wracking situation for most people. Contrary to popular opinion, it’s not a good idea to go through it without professional help.

Ideally, you should seek legal counsel right away—it’s the perfect damage control strategy for your case. Be honest with your attorney and ask them questions about the case. The more you understand your DWI charges, the better chance you have of fighting them.

If you’re facing a DWI charge right now but aren’t sure where to find a DWI defense lawyer, we suggest reaching out to us at DWI And Traffic Lawyers. We are a DWI law firm offering our legal services in Elmsford and surrounding areas.

Give us a call to get started.