If you are found guilty of a DUI charge, it can have lasting repercussions on your livelihood and life in general. Whether you believe you are not guilty of the charge or you want to try to fight it, you may be wondering if you can get your DUI charge dismissed. While there may be a chance that you can get your DUI case dismissed, there are very limited circumstances where you can successfully beat a DUI charge. Here is some more information on the topic.
For you to be found guilty of DUI, the police must prove that you:
- Operated a vehicle whilst over the legal limit
- Attempted to drive a vehicle or you were in control of a vehicle at the time of the alleged offence
Possible defences to a drink driving charge
As mentioned, there are limited circumstances where a not guilty plea will be considered however, there are still instances where you could have a valid defence. Below are some of them:
You were not in charge of the vehicle at the time of the alleged offence
One defence is that you weren’t actually in charge of the vehicle at the time the alleged offence occurred. This defence does include a few significant exclusions and if any apply to you, you may not have a valid defence.
Proper police procedures were not followed
When asking a person to take a breathalyser test or provide a blood sample, the police are required to follow a specific protocol. If these protocols were violated at any point, you may have a defence to your DUI charge.
Failing to provide a sample due to a medical condition
If you were suffering from an illness or had a medical condition rendering you from providing a sample of breath or saliva, you may have a defence to your DUI charge. Additionally, if you can demonstrate that your health would have been impacted by providing the sample at the time of the request, you may have a defence. A medical certificate should have been presented to the police at the time of the request. You will need to prove that you suffer or were suffering with said illness or condition at the time. Another defence is to demonstrate to the court that the request was made unlawfully or that there was a compelling reason not to produce a specimen.
Under the Criminal Code, the court acknowledges that you may have a defence to breaking the law in extreme emergencies when you had no choice but to drive to preserve life or to avoid being in a life-threatening situation.
The breathalyser produced the wrong reading result
The analysis certificate serves as uncontested evidence of the reading when the alleged offence occurred. This could be a defence if it can be established that the test was given erroneously or that the testing apparatus was broken.
You weren’t on the road at the time of the offence
In Queensland, you can be charged for drink driving even if you haven’t driven on a road. You may be charged for drink driving on a road or elsewhere according to the law. Elsewhere includes driveways, parking lots, and private land.
You consumed alcohol involuntary
While claiming to not realise how much alcohol you consumed is not a valid defence, consuming alcohol involuntarily can be. An example of this could be that you were given drinks that you believed to be alcohol-free and they weren’t or a person forced you to consume alcohol. Of course, if this is the case, you will need solid evidence to support your case.
Will I have a criminal conviction recorded against me?
In most instances, a DUI charge is recorded as a conviction on your traffic history and is not recorded on your criminal history. It can still impact your future though if an employer requires you to have a clear traffic history.
Will I go to jail for my DUI charge?
Depending on the specifics of the offence, a DUI charge might indeed result in prison time. Generally, the higher your blood alcohol concentration (BAC), the more serious the penalties will be. The same applies if you are a repeat offender or you
committed other crimes at the time of the alleged offence.
Do I need a lawyer if I plan on pleading not guilty to my DUI charge?
You must prepare a compelling legal argument if you intend to enter a not-guilty plea. It is strongly advised that you seek the assistance of an expert DUI solicitor who can represent you in court. Going at it alone will likely result in the charges being upheld and you may face harsher penalties for essentially wasting the court’s time as a lot more resources are used for people pleading not guilty compared to those pleading guilty.
How can I get my DUI charge dismissed?
The best way to go about having your DUI charge dismissed is by consulting with a traffic lawyer before your court date. They can tell you if you have a strong case or not and the likelihood of having your DUI dismissed given your particular circumstances.
What happens when pleading not guilty?
At the initial court hearing, the case will typically get postponed for 4 to 6 weeks when pleading not guilty to a traffic charge. This will give the police time to gather their evidence. They will then prepare a brief of evidence to use against you in court. You will be notified of your hearing date for your matter to be heard.
Speak to South East Queensland’s leading traffic law firm
Even though there are numerous possible defences to a DUI charge, courts are generally reluctant to accept them. If you believe you have a defence to your DUI charge, it is imperative that you seek legal advice before your court date. Experienced traffic lawyers specialise in this area of the law and they have the necessary skills and knowledge to help you achieve the best possible outcome allowing you to get on with your life, as well as helping you get a Work Licenses QLD. If you are looking for the very best traffic lawyers in South East Queensland, contact the traffic law specialists at Drink Driver Lawyer today. We offer obligation-free consultations.