After a second driving under the influence arrest, you face significant penalties because it is more serious than a first time DUI/DWI charge. Here’s what you need to know about Maryland’s DUI/DWI laws, as well as how to defend yourself and protect your rights after being pulled over and arrested for drunk driving.
What is the Maryland Lookback Period?
The “lookback period” will determine if an individual will be charged with a first offense DUI or a second offense DUI/DWI. In Maryland, the lookback period is 5 years. This means that if you are arrested again for a DUI or DWI in a five-year period, you will be charged with a second offense. However, if you are charged with a DUI/DWI 5 years or more after the first, you will be charged with a first offense.
Penalties for a Second Offense DUI/DWI
If your BAC at the time of your arrest is 0.08% or higher, you will be charged with a DUI. Additionally, Maryland’s laws are unique because they also penalize lower BAC levels. Therefore, you will be charged with a DWI if your BAC at the time of your arrest is 0.04% to 0.07%.
- A second offense DUI is punishable by up to two years incarceration and up to a $2,000 fine.
- A second offense DWI is punishable by up to one year incarceration and up to a $500 fine.
- An ignition interlock device is mandatory after both a second offense DUI and DWI.
- The license suspension for a second offense DUI/DWI is one year.
BAC levels are very important in Maryland. If you are under 21, you will be arrested if your BAC is 0.02%, and if you are a commercial driver, you will be arrested with a BAC of 0.04%.
When to Contact a DUI Attorney
After a drunk driving arrest in Maryland, the most important thing you can do is contact an experienced DUI attorney. An attorney will explore every avenue to protect your rights and will work hard to see that your case is dismissed or your charges are reduced. Know that there are many defenses to a DUI or DWI charge, and your lawyer will choose the strategies that are most likely to succeed.
If you’ve been charged with a second offense DUI/DWI, contact J. Christopher Llinas today for a consultation to discuss your case. Call now at (443) 235-5793 or (443) 235-5793.