Gladstone Missouri DWI Defense Blog

What happens if you refuse a breath test in Missouri?

When you sign and submit your driver's license application in Missouri, you agree to succumb to a chemical test should an officer request one of you. Lawmakers refer to this particular agreement as "implied consent." While you may refuse to take a breath test regardless of the implied consent law, the state of Missouri will punish you for breach of contract by revoking your driving privileges for one year. This is known as "Chemical Revocation."

According to the Missouri Department of Revenue, Chemical Revocation is an alcohol-related offense. If you have such an offense on your record, the law mandates that you complete a Substance Abuse Traffic Offender Program (SATOP) or a comparable course. You must complete this program to regain your driving privileges.

Missouri DWI checkpoints: What you should never do

DWI checkpoints have been a point of contention in Missouri for many years. For the second straight year in a row, the state has lost funding for such checkpoints. However, they still pop up, and you need to prepare for them. 

Driving while under the influence of alcohol is a serious offense. A single arrest and conviction are enough to impact what kind of jobs you can get in the future. People, both those sober and under the influence, make mistakes at these checkpoints, and you should avoid doing the following at all costs. 

Take the right road to reclaim your privileges

Keeping your license would probably be one of your first priorities if you were arrested for a DUI in Missouri. After all, you could only expect to depend on your friends and family for a certain amount of time before you start to feel like a burden.

However, it is often far from simple to retain driving privileges — or get them back — after a DUI. There are typically only a handful of options available to you. At the Law Office of Keleher and Eastman, we would make it our first priority to walk you through each feasible process to regain your rights.

How can I treat an alcohol addiction?

If you’ve recently been charged with a DUI in Missouri, your problems may extend beyond the legal. In many cases, a DUI charge indicates a serious problem with alcohol, which can impact your personal life, your work, and even the state of your health. Getting the appropriate treatment is crucial in this case, and fortunately, there are a lot of options available. WebMD explains how you can receive help for alcohol abuse issues.

Therapy & counseling

Felony drunk driving charges in Missouri

In an instant, a drunk driving conviction can change a person’s life, making it difficult to get or hold down a job, to gain an education and to be approved for certain things, such as a rental application. Missouri residents with DUI charges can also face shame and embarrassment, as well as financial troubles from being required to pay fines and associated fees from the conviction, maintaining an ignition interlock device or enrolling in alcohol counseling sessions. These complications get even worse when a driver finds himself or herself with felony DUI charges.

As FindLaw explains, a first drunk driving offense in Missouri is usually a misdemeanor charge. However, some situations can result in felony charges, including the following:

  • Being involved in a drunk driving accident that results in someone’s bodily harm or death
  • Driving while intoxicated with children in the vehicle
  • Having an excessive blood alcohol content while driving
  • Getting a DUI while driving on a suspended or revoked license
  • Having multiple drunk driving convictions within a certain time frame

What is a hardship license, and am I eligible?

Losing your license after a drunk driving conviction does not mean that you no longer have to go to work or school or fulfill other important obligations where you would need your car. You and other Missouri residents in the same situation may wonder how to get by on a suspended license.

Obviously, you cannot simply risk driving without a license. To do so would only get you in further trouble if you are caught. You might rely on rides from friends or family, but that may be impractical, and you might feel bad about imposing upon them for too long. Taking the bus or an Uber can get expensive. You might be able to walk to some places, but your job and other destinations might be too far.

Can you get the job you want with DUI on your record?

If you are a college student, you have probably been planning for a certain career after graduation. If you have a drunk driving conviction on your record, your plan may no longer be workable.

A DUI/DWI will affect more than your career ambitions, however. Your entire future is at stake.

Missouri DUI penalties: What you should know

 

If you have been charged with driving under the influence of alcohol in Missouri, you may face steep penalties depending on whether you have former convictions, as well as how intoxicated you are at the time of your arrest. It is crucial that you understand how the process works so that you can maximize the outcome of your case.

What are ignition interlock devices?

If you have been charged and convicted of driving under the influence of alcohol, you may be required to have an ignition interlock device installed in your vehicle. Interlock devices are designed to keep you from driving while drunk. Once an interlock device is installed in your vehicle, you are restricted from driving if you have a blood alcohol content level that is above a certain, preset limit.

In order to start the vehicle, you must blow through a tube that is connected to a dashboard monitor. The machine will then determine your BAC level from the amount of alcohol detected in your exhaled breath sample. If the BAC level is under the preset amount, the car will start. Periodically during the drive, an alarm will sound asking you to submit another breath sample in order to keep the vehicle running. Information regarding failed startup attempts and failed rolling retests are stored within the device and transferred to law enforcement officials during interlock device maintenance appointments.

Can I lose my license for a DWI arrest?

If Missouri law enforcement officers arrest you for allegedly driving while intoxicated and/or under the influence of drugs, this alleged criminal offense also constitutes a secondary civil administrative offense. Under Section 302 of the Revised Statutes of Missouri, the administrative sanction for this offense is a possible 90-day suspension of your driver's license or a possible one-year revocation.