You may have had a couple drinks at a local bar during happy hour or over dinner at a restaurant in Annapolis. You are on your way home when you suddenly see police lights flashing in your rear-view mirror. Soon, you find yourself being arrested on drunk driving charges.
This is a situation no one wants to be in, but it does happen. Therefore, it is a good idea to have a basic understanding of drunk driving laws in Maryland, including the difference between a DUI and a DWI.
When will I be charged with DUI?
You will be charged with driving under the influence (DUI) if your blood alcohol concentration is 0.08% or greater. This is known as being under the influence “per se.” Basically, this means that, besides obtaining your BAC, police do not need to collect any other evidence to prove that you are under the influence of alcohol.
When will I be charged with DWI?
However, even if your BAC is below 0.08%, you still could face the lesser drunk driving charge, driving while impaired (DWI). A person can be charged with DWI based on observation, for example, if the driver is swerving, has alcohol on their breath or does not a field sobriety test. If, based on these observations, the arresting officer believes you are under the influence and cannot drive safely, you can be charged with DWI, even if your BAC is below the legal limit.
Learn more about drunk driving charges in Maryland
No one wants to face drunk driving charges, but if you are, it is important to develop a solid defense strategy. This post is for educational purposes only and does not offer legal advice. Those who want to learn more about their rights and options in drunk driving cases can explore our firm’s website for further information.