DUI Law Overview
DUI Law in Las Vegas
What happens after your first DUI?
If you’ve been arrested on a DUI/DWI charge in southern Nevada, The Vegas Lawyers are here to answer your questions and provide you with a 5-star defense. We have some of the top lawyers and paralegals in southern Nevada that routinely handle these types of cases in Las Vegas, Henderson, North Las Vegas, Boulder City, Searchlight, Goodsprings and Pahrump. One of our principal lawyers, Tony Abbatangelo, Esq. was the former Chief Judge of the Las Vegas DUI court. When it comes to DUI cases, there are few lawyers as knowledgeable and experienced as Tony. As a former Judge, he’s seen DUI cases from every possible angle. Respected by prosecutors and judges alike, Tony and his DUI defense team know what it takes to win. When you get The Vegas Lawyers on your side, you get a strong team of dedicated professionals. Don’t gamble with your future.
DUI vs. DWI: What’s the Difference?
It can be difficult to tell the difference between a DUI and a DWI. In fact, many states use the terms interchangeably or as separate charges with one being more serious than the other. In the state of Nevada, the term DUI is the preferred term and is what’s officially used.
Driving Under the Influence
Driving under the influence (DUI), is defined under Nevada law, specifically Nevada Revised Statute 484C.105, as a situation involving a person “impaired to a degree that renders a person incapable of safely driving or exercising actual physical control of a vehicle.” Police officers can pull you over and subsequently arrest you for a DUI if they notice inconsistencies with your driving, such as swerving and posture.
A motorized vehicle can range from automobiles, motorized watercrafts (boats), and motorcycles, to name a few. In addition, some states even allow for persons operating bicycles to be charged with DUIs.
In Nevada, the state’s DUI laws do not include bicycles or motorized bicycles (mopeds). You cannot be lawfully charged with a DUI in Las Vegas if found operating such vehicles while under the influence.
Driving While Intoxicated/Impaired
Driving while intoxicated/impaired (DWI), is defined as being too impaired or intoxicated to drive, even if your blood alcohol content (BAC) in your bloodstream is found to be less than the federal legal limit of 0.08%.
In the states that use DWI interchangeably with DUI, the term “driving while intoxicated” is preferred. In states where DWI is separate from DUI, the term “driving while impaired” is usually referred to as the differentiating factor, where the person was driving while impaired due to drugs (recreational or prescribed).
Several states have policies that allow charges to be pursued at BAC levels other than the federal limit. In Nevada, the BAC follows the federal limit (0.08%), however, minors with a BAC as low as 0.02% and commercial drivers with a BAC of 0.04% can be charged.
Which One Has More Serious Implications?
When DUIs and DWIs are viewed as separate charges, DWI is usually recognized as the more serious offense of the two. However, in Nevada, because DUI/DWI are considered interchangeably, both minors and adults are generally charged with a DUI when there is a situation involving impairment in connection with the operation of a motor vehicle.
Irrespective of whether you’re being charged with a DUI or DWI, the legal and financial ramifications are quite severe. In 2018, 26% of all fatal crashes in Nevada were due to alcohol. Moreover, 55.4% of 893 total fatal crashes in the state from 2016-2018 involved the influence of alcohol, drugs (legal/illegal), or both. If you’re consuming alcohol or legal/illegal substances that can impair your behavior, do not drive. You can harm yourself or someone else.
Nevada DUI Laws Are Comprehensive And Detailed
The main statutes governing DUI and DWI charges in Nevada are found in Chapter 484C of the Nevada Revised Statutes. Entitled “Driving Under The Influence Of Alcohol Or A Prohibited Substance,” this chapter of Nevada laws contains detailed definitions, identification of prohibited conduct and description of penalties. Having an attorney familiar with these statutes, how they are interpreted by judges and used by prosecutors and the intricacies involved with DUI defenses is not just important, it’s critical.
Contact The Vegas Lawyers If You’re Facing DUI Charges in Las Vegas, Henderson, North Las Vegas, Boulder City, Searchlight, Goodsprings or Pahrump.
Don’t gamble with your future. Whether you live in southern Nevada or you’re a tourist from out of town and you’re now facing DUI charges, it’s important to have the best possible DUI team on your side. Sometimes good people make mistakes that can haunt them for the rest of their lives. The penalties involved with a DUI can be severe and life altering. Known to many as the best DUI attorneys in Las Vegas, our strong team of lawyers and paralegals brings a sense of compassion and understanding in our representation of our clients. We have the experience to help you get the least amount of penalties possible under the circumstances.
If you’ve been arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol, marijuana, or drugs in Las Vegas, contact The Vegas Lawyers today! Or call us direct at (702) 707-7000.