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Georgia DUI Laws – 2nd DUI in Georgia – Is Second DUI a Felony or Misdemeanor?

By:  William C. Head, Criminal Defense Attorney Atlanta GA and ABA Board-Certified DUI Attorney

The Huge Wake-Up Call: Being Arrested for a 2nd DUI in GA

For a 1st DUI, many people either go to court without a DUI attorney and represent themselves or look for cheap DUI lawyers to hold their hand and go plead guilty to driving under the influence. When facing their 2nd offense DUI, they regret that first poor decision. This article outlines the major DUI penalties and DUI consequences a repeat offense brings. Look over this chart to get a quick view of the drastically different DUI penalties DUI license suspension consequences:

These citizens then entered an eventual guilty plea, without ever talking to a DUI lawyer who is a specialist in fighting a DUI first offense. To use a medical analogy, it is like a person being told by his or her doctor that they have cancer, and then self-diagnosing whether he or she can BEAT cancer. Pretty stupid choice, when you look at it that way. In surfing the internet or talking with DUI lawyers near me, they learn that the stakes are now extremely high for a DUI 2nd offense.

About 95% of clients who come to our DUI law firm when facing a 2nd DUI in Georgia tell us that they CANNOT BELIEVE they got in trouble again! And they really don’t know the HALF of it. The slap on the wrist they felt after the DUI first offense is now a major problem for them. By comparison, their 1st offense DUI, by comparison, was a “cakewalk.”

 A Lifetime of Regret and DUI Consequences for Pleading Guilty to DUI 2nd in GA

The mistake of a second offense DUI in GA will be one that the convicted citizen will regret forever, and will especially grow to regret, because the potential DUI penalties, the driver’s license impact, and the crushing consequences that can befall your family and job generate a 5-fold to 10-fold harsher “batch” of criminal and administrative punishments for a second DUI offense than the person faced with the first offense DUI conviction.

Below is a short list of 12 painful, life-altering consequences of a second GA DUI is a partial explanation of how badly the life of a defendant can be impacted and disrupted after a conviction for a 2nd DUI in GA within 5 years. If you don’t know what you LOSE by pleading guilty, you cannot change your path and hire the best DUI lawyers in Atlanta to TRY to dodge this bullet!

Each year, our three DUI law office partners are able to get more than 250 DUI cases in Georgia reduced to reckless driving, have the DUI dismissed, or obtain “not guilty” verdicts. Many of these cases are for people facing a 2nd DUI in GA or even worse prior criminal records for prior DUI convictions. Quite a few had DUI arrests that had WORSE facts than your case, guaranteed. The difference is that they made a commitment to FIGHT, and you did not.

Twelve Painful, Life-Altering Consequences and Impacts of a 2nd DUI in GA

  1. Total suspension of all driving privileges for 2nd DUI offense in GA and no limited permit for the first 120 days, at a minimum, if convicted for the second time within 5 years, based on dates of arrest.
  2. Publishing your mug shot and DUI case disposition in the local newspaper, for any DUI 2nd within ten years. See example below (from a Google images search, not one of our clients).
  3. Inability to transport children in your vehicle, for 18 months or longer, while on 2nd DUI, whether during the first 120 days or after, when an interlock device is installed, and this is only with qualifying for early reinstatement.
  4. Mandatory installation of interlock device to obtain early reinstatement after 2nd DUI in Georgia, following a 120-day, total suspension of all driving privileges, within 3 years.
  5. Inability to rent cars while on 2nd DUI in Georgia, because you cannot drive a non-interlock car.
  6. Possible participation in a DUI Court program, that costs about $3500 to $4000 over 24 months, and takes up not less than 4 hours of court time every week, for up to 24 months, plus attending AA (or similar) alcohol and drug awareness meetings daily.
  7. Your refusal to participate in the DUI Court program (in some GA counties) means far more than the minimum 72 hours in jail. You will be offered 60, 90 or 120 days in jail, for 2nd DUI in GA, and 120 days (or more) for 3rd DUI, with additional punishment for high and aggravated monetary fines and jail time that cannot qualify for 2-for-1 good-time jail credit.
  8. DUI car insurance cancellation or requirement to move to SR-22, assigned risk pool at exorbitant rates (up to 5 times preferred rate premiums). For clients with substantial assets, the DUI insurance options after conviction will restrict the ability to purchase for higher liability limits of coverage that are normally available.
  9. Ineligible to apply for early reinstatement or ignition interlock options, for second DUI in GA, for person licensed by another state, when arrested in Georgia for a Georgia DUI. For those licensed in Georgia, a high reinstatement fee coupled with an obligation to install and ignition interlock for 12 months.
  10. Completion of lengthy, expensive alcohol and drug therapy and treatment, to become eligible to be reinstated to drive again in Georgia.
  11. Future job availability, creditworthiness, eligibility to buy preferred life insurance jumbo policies, travel outside the USA to places like Canada, and denial of ability to rent cars from most major car rental companies are a small scattering of the draconian punishments that await the person convicted of a 2nd DUI in GA within a five-year period.
  12. CMV drivers (commercial motor vehicle) lose their CDL overlay for their lifetime and can no longer drive big rig trucks or passenger transports for a living.

The best DUI lawyers in Atlanta, Georgia will offer you a FREE lawyer consultation near me, explain how their criminal defense attorneys review your DUI case facts and implement a game plan for winning.

Call our DUI attorneys NOW, 24-7, for an initial criminal case review and to obtain FREE legal advice404-567-5515, or email our criminal justice lawyers.

Highly Searched Links to Related Topics:

GA DDS -Protecting against Driver’s License Suspension under Implied Consent

Constitutionality of DUI Checkpoints in Georgia

BAC Chart for Alcohol Level by Weight and Number of Drinks

Field Sobriety Test Myths and Misconceptions

What Does DUI Mean?

How to Beat a DUI in Court

Links About Criminal Georgia DUI Laws and Our Georgia DUI Attorneys

Main statute: O.C.G.A. 40-6-391

Georgia DUI schools for Risk Reduction DUI classes

Alcohol and Drug substance abuse counselor link

Ignition interlock devices, Georgia DDS approved providers

DUI Testing Statute: O.C.G.A. 40-6-392

Felony Vehicular Homicide: O.C.G.A. 40-3-394

Felony Serious Injury by Vehicle: O.C.G.A. 40-3-394

Links About Administrative License Suspension

Implied Consent Statute: O.C.G.A. 40-5-55

Implied Consent Notice: O.C.G.A. 40-5-67.1

New ignition Interlock Device Statutory Option: O.C.G.A.

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MAIN LAW OFFICE IN SANDY
SPRINGS, GEORGIA:
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