Receiving a driving while impaired (DWI) charge in your own state is frightening enough, but a DWI in another state is even more intimidating. Facing a serious charge like a DWI in a state where you’re unfamiliar with the laws and statutes can be overwhelming. If an officer charges you with a DWI while you’re on vacation or driving in another state, don’t hesitate to call an out of state DWI attorney. The DWI lawyers at Scharff Law Firm can help you navigate the laws if you’re a North Carolinian with a charge from another state.
What Happens During an Out-of-State DWI?
When you receive a DWI outside of your home state, two series of events occur: license suspension and DWI prosecution. The suspension of your license may potentially happen in your home state. If your blood alcohol concentration (BAC) level was over the legal limit in that state or your refused a test, law enforcement will automatically suspend your license. This happens before your case goes to trial. The courts will send a notice of final license suspension to your home state. To get your license back, you will likely have to take an alcohol course in either North Carolina or the other state and pay the reinstatement fee.
The arresting police officer or the courts will give you a summons with your court date in the foreign state. This is your opportunity to hire an out of state DWI defense attorney if you haven’t already. As a general rule, your criminal defense attorney must be admitted to practice in the state where he or she is representing you. However, some states will grant a limited license to the attorney in special conditions. Find out which state your attorney must be licensed in. After your trial, the courts will send a report of your verdict to your home state.
A guilty verdict means you will have to pay your debt to society in the state you received the DWI, but you may also face a separate sentencing in your home state. For example, if you paid the fees, completed the court-ordered alcohol class, and didn’t drive during your six-month revocation in another state, North Carolina may add to your burden when the courts receive your verdict. This is especially true if you have a record of prior DWIs in the NC system. The other state may have charged you as a first time offender, but NC knows it’s your second or subsequent offense and can charge you accordingly.
Protect Your Rights With an Experienced Lawyer in NC
In situations where two states sentence you for DWI, you need an experienced defense lawyer. Hire an attorney in your home state – in this case, North Carolina – to help you get back on the road as soon as possible. The Raleigh DWI attorneys at Scharff Law Firm can try to get you limited driving privileges in NC so you can return to your job. The process for earning limited driving privileges in NC is different for out-of-state DWI convictions than in-state ones. Our skilled lawyers can walk you through the extra steps and explain the differences between both in detail.
Your out-of-state DWI will be a unique case depending on your home state and the state in which you received the charge. You need to partner with a law firm you can trust to navigate complex out-of-state DWI laws and try to minimize the penalties you face in both states. Scharff Law Firm offers free case consultations, so you can speak with one of our lead attorneys to discuss your complex case. Our attorneys have extensive DWI trial experience that can help you during complicated cases. If you need a Raleigh, NC law firm to help you with your out-of-state DWI, call (919) 457-1954 or connect with Scharff Law Firm online.