What does zero tolerance mean in terms of DUI Law?

It means you can be arrested for drunk driving if you have had any alcohol at all, even one drink, or a half drink, if it’s in your bloodstream. The zero tolerance DUI law usually applies to only people under age 21.

DUI Laws

State laws vary. Some states allow a DWI or DUI arrest for any measurable blood alcohol in the system, or anything over .00% . Other states, such as New York, have DUI laws allowing a blood alcohol level of between .02% and .07%, reasoning that the person may have had a little wine at a religious event, or been using mouthwash or cold medicine. This is different than the .08% blood alcohol level usually allowed under law for adults.

If you are arrested under the zero tolerance law, you will probably need to appear in court. Fines and punishments are generally quite hefty for those under age 21 and include license suspension for six months to a year, or, in some cases, even 5 years if you refused a sobriety test and then are found guilty. Monetary fines can reach thousands of dollars.

DUI Lawyers

It might be a good idea, for practical purposes and peace of mind, to hire a DUI lawyer who can advise you of your rights and represent you in court. Most states will not provide you with a public defender for a DUI, but they will let you prove your case if you want, with witnesses and evidence. A DUI lawyer will do this for you.

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