Facing drunk driving charges is hard to do, but the difficulty increases when you are facing subsequent charges after being previously convicted. Having multiple DUI convictions can end up meaning that you are labeled as a habitual offender. Understanding what this means and how it will affect you might have an impact on the effort you are going to put into your defense.
In order to be labeled as a habitual offender, you have to be convicted of violating specific laws a certain number of times within a certain period of time. If the court labels you as a habitual offender, you can face some very serious consequences.
In some cases, being labeled as a habitual offender means that you can face enhanced charges if you get into more trouble. These charges can mean that you face steeper fines or more time in prison. There mere fact that you are considered a habitual offender might automatically mean that you are subject to harsh minimum sentencing requirements.
When it comes to habitual offender status for a DUI, you could face longer license revocations, possibly for the rest of your life. You could also face having to have an ignition interlock on your vehicle longer.
If you have been charged with a DUI, you should work hard to fight against it. If you end up being convicted, looking into an expungement when you have completed your sentence components might be a good idea. Additionally, you should take the steps necessary to get your driver’s license back as soon as possible. You might be able to get this done by petitioning the court for a reinstatement.
Source: FindLaw, “DUI Habitual Offenders: What Are the Consequences?,” Betty Wang, JD, accessed Aug. 11, 2016