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You are safe as long as your BAC was under 0.08 percent, right?

Wrong. In many cases, yes, you can avoid a DUI charge if police officers find that your BAC is under 0.08 percent. However, that is not always a guarantee against criminal charges. For example, if you were swerving all over the road, you could face charges even with a BAC of, say, 0.06 percent. Even the Delaware DMV website states that anything more than 0.05 percent is enough to get you arrested. Part of the reason behind this is that alcohol affects people differently. You may not have drunk in years, so it could have taken just one or two glasses of wine for you to drive unsafely. Meanwhile, someone who regularly drinks may still have been able to drive reasonably safely at a 0.06 percent BAC.

There is also the fact that if you are younger than 21, the BAC limit changes from 0.08 to 0.02 percent.

There must be corroborating evidence

The court system sees a BAC test result greater than 0.08 percent as strong evidence by itself that you may be guilty of DUI. If your result is lower, a conviction can be harder to obtain because corroborating evidence needs to be present and strong. For example, say that your BAC was 0.05 percent. If a police officer says that you were tailgating another driver and drifting all over the road yet the sober and credible passenger in your car says you were driving fine, that muddies the issue. A lawyer may be able to look at your case and determine possible fruitful lines of defense.

A conviction is serious

It can be natural to think that because your BAC was under 0.08 percent, your charges will be dropped or there will be no conviction. Or if you do receive a conviction, your punishment will not be as serious as if your BAC was higher than 0.08 percent. The reality is that you should treat any DUI charge seriously, regardless of your BAC. Convictions carry consequences that ripple into many areas of your life.

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Michael C. Heyden Law Office
1201 North King Street, Suite B
Wilmington, DE 19801

Toll Free: 888-668-0590
Phone: 302-416-4695
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