7 Key Things to Do After Getting a DUI in Kentucky
No matter the reasons, getting arrested for driving under the influence can have major ramifications. It's important to consider the long-term consequences, as the impact of this mistake can extend far beyond the moment. Even though it may seem like a simple misstep, it can cause a chain of events that will reverberate into the future.
First, seek legal counsel. If you decide to go to trial, a criminal defense lawyer can represent and advocate for you by helping you understand your rights and available options. Choose to enter a guilty or no contest plea in exchange for cooperation with prosecutors in future instances. Your lawyer might be able to bargain for a shorter sentence.
Second, find a DUI school to help you get back on the road as safely as possible. Many schools offer alcohol abuse treatment and other programs that can help overcome addiction and learn proper driving skills. Consider enrolling in an online program if you can't find a school in your area.
Finally, remember that there is always hope for rehabilitation and redemption after receiving a DUI in Kentucky. People are likely to forgive and forget when you accept responsibility for your actions and put in an effort to turn your life around.
If you have been arrested for driving under the influence, you can take steps to protect your legal rights and ensure a positive outcome in the end.
1. Be Polite and Protect Your Rights
Always be courteous when interacting with law enforcement, particularly when you are stopped for suspicion of driving under the influence in Kentucky. However, being polite does not mean you should let officers do whatever they please.
Do not give the police any evidence that could be used against you. You have the right to remain silent, and it is recommended that you exercise this right. You do not have to answer questions related to where you have been, your destination, or if you have consumed any alcoholic beverages.
2. Contact an Attorney
After obtaining the DUI, it is important to contact an experienced attorney as quickly as possible. An experienced attorney can help defend your rights and ensure that you are treated fairly by the court. A lawyer can help you navigate the legal system and protect your rights. It is important to find an attorney familiar with the vehicular offenses and DUI laws in Kentucky, as they can vary from state to state.
3. Avoid Taking Sobriety Tests and Searches
We highly advise all drivers to avoid participating in any roadside sobriety tests, such as agility tests and eye movement tests. These tests will never work in your favor and are also seen as voluntary tests. Furthermore, Kentucky law allows police to arrest you on drunk driving charges even if you do not fail a breath or blood test.
You can simply decline the test or let the officer know you would like to discuss it with your attorney. Additionally, we recommend not consenting to a breath, blood, or urine test, as well as a search of your vehicle, until speaking to a lawyer. Results from these tests are often unreliable and if found above the legal limit, it would be another piece of evidence used against you in court.
4. Take a Look at Your Vehicle's Records
Once you’ve been arrested for driving under the influence, law enforcement may impound your vehicle as evidentiary material. Make sure to obtain copies of all vehicle records, including titles, registration, and insurance information. This information can help prove ownership of the car if it is seized during a criminal case.
5. Write Down the Details of Your DUI Stop
When you get a spare moment, take the time to write down everything you remember about the events leading up to your arrest. Start at the moment you are stopped by the police and continue until the moment you are released.
Include as much detail as possible, such as: what caused the officer to notice you in the first place, what the officer said to you, what the officer asked you to do, if the officer searched your vehicle without your permission, if the officer read you your rights, and if the officer allowed you to contact an attorney or family member. It is important to document all of these details as they may be critical in your defense.
6. Attend a DUI School Course
Attending a DUI school course is essential for anyone who has received a DUI. This course can be conducted in person or online and typically lasts eight hours. It covers topics such as the effects of alcohol on driving, the legal consequences of driving under the influence, and tips for making safe decisions when operating a vehicle. This course will give you the necessary knowledge to follow the law and stay safe while driving.
7. Pay Court Fines and Fees
Drivers who are found guilty of DUI must deal with their behavior's legal and financial repercussions. One of the most common consequences is the requirement to pay fines and fees associated with a DUI conviction. Depending on the severity of the offense, fines and fees may include court costs, restitution, probation or parole fees, and other costs determined by the court. Individuals must understand the fines and fees they must pay to avoid further legal trouble.
Receiving a DUI can be stressful and expensive. However, it is important to take the necessary steps to ensure compliance with all relevant laws and regulations, as failure to do so, could result in even more serious consequences. Knowing your rights, understanding the legal process, and staying informed about any potential changes to DUI laws in Kentucky can help you successfully navigate the situation.
Following these steps will help protect your rights and avoid additional penalties if you are guilty of DUI.
About the Author
Lauren Kunis is the Content Marketing Strategist for Stonewall Institute, an outpatient alcohol and drug treatment center that focuses on a holistic, individualized approach to addiction recovery. She loves reading books, traveling, and going on hiking adventures with her dog Max