Defending Your Rights And Future And Seeking The Compensation You Deserve

  1. Home
  2.  » 
  3. Motor Vehicle Accidents
  4.  » DUI/DWI

You Have Options When Facing A DUI In South Dakota

Getting a DUI/DWI in South Dakota can have a major impact on your life. A conviction could lead to fines, jail time, a license suspension and much more. At Christensen Law Office, PC, we can provide the experienced legal guidance you need at this time.

With more than 25 years of experience, our Sioux Falls DUI lawyers have the skill and knowledge to help you explore your defense options and navigate the complex legal process. We understand the ins and outs of DUI/DWI law, and our lawyers can help you explore your options when facing charges. We help every step of the way, from the arraignment to the hearings and a potential trial.

What Is The Legal Limit In South Dakota?

Like other states, South Dakota has a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) limit for all drivers. For most, it is set at .08%, though some are lower – such as .04% for commercial drivers or “any detectable amount” for those under 21. Any time that a person is operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of drugs or alcohol, they could face DWI or DUI charges – regardless of their BAC. Some states use DUI or DWI, but South Dakota uses both terms interchangeably. In addition, a driver could also be arrested for clear impairment even if their BAC is under the legal limit.

Special Rules For Different Drivers

While the legal limit noted above applies to most drivers, there are additional rules for different types of drivers. Commercial drivers may be arrested with a BAC of .04% or higher, while zero tolerance laws mean that underage drivers just need a BAC of .02% for an arrest. Furthermore, someone could get a DWI for being under the influence of drugs, even if they have a BAC of .00%.

The Consequences Of A DUI

A DUI can have a major impact on any driver, but it’s especially problematic for commercial drivers, who risk losing their CDL and their careers. Potential legal consequences include significant fines, a license suspension, jail time and educational or treatment programs. With aggravating factors, the consequences could increase. These factors include things like an excessively high BAC or having a minor in the car.

In a DUI conviction, the penalties depend on the driver’s previous record. For example, for a first DUI, there’s a maximum jail sentence of 45 days, fines of $450 and a minimum driver’s license revocation of 30 days. For a second offense, however, the license is revoked for a year, the fines increase to $750 and jail time could be up to 180 days.

Implied Consent Laws And The Consequences Of Refusing A Breath Test

In South Dakota, implied consent laws impose consequences for refusing a breath test. While you have a right to refuse a field sobriety or breath test, doing so may have consequences. Drivers who refuse to submit to a breath test because they are worried about their BAC being over the legal limit face mandatory suspension of their driver’s license.

Legal representation for any DUI-related proceeding can be invaluable. An experienced DUI lawyer will evaluate the evidence against you and challenge any evidence that violates your rights. For example, if officers make mistakes during field sobriety tests or breath tests, it can invalidate that evidence. If your license has been suspended, a lawyer can help you get your license reinstated after satisfying certain conditions, such as paying fees or installing an ignition interlock device on your vehicle.

Schedule A Free Consultation With A South Dakota DUI/DWI Lawyer

Our DUI lawyers at Christensen Law Office, PC, offer free initial consultations. To schedule your free appointment, contact us online or call 605-206-5872. We look forward to telling you more about how we can help you with your case.