Drunk driving is a dangerous habit, not only because of the risk of accidents, but also because of the potential consequences it can have for people convicted of DUIs (Driving Under the Influence).
Ohio takes driving under the influence very seriously. Under Ohio law, if you are found guilty of “operating a vehicle under the influence,” or OVI, you could face some strict criminal penalties. But there are other consequences you can face, beyond criminal penalties, if you’re pulled over for OVI.
The experienced defense attorneys at Hiltner Trial Lawyers know how high the stakes can be in an OVI case, and we know how to build a defense against these charges. Read on for our breakdown of what can happen if you’re charged with OVI in Ohio.
What counts as OVI in Ohio?
Conventional wisdom warns against getting behind the wheel if you’re “under the influence.” But what does this mean exactly?
Well, according to Ohio, you can be charged with OVI if you operate a vehicle under any of the following conditions:
- Your blood alcohol content (BAC) is at least .08%
- Your urine alcohol concentration is .110 or more
- You have a certain amount of marijuana, LSD, cocaine, heroin, amphetamine, methamphetamine, or PCP in your system
- You are “under the influence” of alcohol, drugs, or a combination of both
Some of these conditions can be a bit subjective, but generally you won’t be charged unless a biometric test shows that you have a dangerous amount of a controlled substance in your system.
Consequences of an OVI charge in Ohio?
If you find yourself charged with OVI, you should contact a criminal defense attorney as soon as possible. An experienced defense attorney will have the knowledge of the law to potentially get your case dismissed or at least reduce the sentence that you face.
In Ohio, you can lose your license before you are even convicted of the charge. If you are tested above the permitted level, or if you refuse testing, you can have your license suspended for up to 3 years. If you need to drive during that time, you will have to apply for a restricted license.
If you are convicted, the penalties that you face for an OVI conviction depend on just how intoxicated you were when you were pulled over.
An OVI charge is considered “low level” if your BAC is under .17%. The penalties for a low-level conviction can be as much as a 3-year license suspension, 5 years of probation, a $1,000 fine, and up to 180 days in jail.
If your BAC was over .17%, your OVI charge is considered “high level,” and a conviction could result in higher jail time and more strict driving restrictions.
Hire a defense attorney in Ohio today
The best way to defend your record against a DUI or OVI charge is to consult with an experienced defense attorney. At Hiltner Trial Lawyers, our attorneys have years of experience and sufficient knowledge of the law to make sure our clients’ rights are respected, and that their records aren’t tarnished over one mistake. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation.