In Atlanta, driving under the influence (DUI) is a serious criminal offense. Especially if you are one of the many drivers who are arrested in the Atlanta Metro Area each year. In fact, under Georgia law, a DUI can be classified as either a misdemeanor or a felony.
Felony DUI Vs. Misdemeanor DUI
Although the majority of DUIs are considered misdemeanors, in some instances, the charge can be upgraded to a felony. As the more serious charge, a felony DUI conviction carries far harsher penalties than a misdemeanor offense. For example, the maximum penalties for misdemeanor DUI include a $1,000 fine and a one-year jail sentence. If you are convicted of felony DUI, on the other hand, you could spend up to five years behind bars and pay up to $5,000 in fines.
In addition to having more stringent sentencing guidelines, a felony conviction will also lead to the loss of several personal liberties, including your right to vote, purchase a firearm, and travel outside of the country. As a convicted felon, you will also be ineligible for most government jobs, as well as careers in the legal and educational fields—and regardless of what industry you work in, many employers will simply refuse to hire you because of your background.
Extenuating Circumstances And Felony DUI
So just when is an Atlanta DUI considered a felony offense? Generally, if you rack up three or more DUI convictions and are charged with a fourth offense, the crime will be treated as a felony. The charge may also be considered a felony if you were involved in a serious auto accident or transporting an underage passenger at the time of your arrest.
As you can see, the consequences of a felony DUI conviction are no laughing matter. If you were recently arrested for drunk driving and your offense is classified as a felony, it is more important than ever to obtain legal representation for your case—and when it comes to defending drunk drivers, no one is more prepared to take on the prosecution than a professional DUI defense attorney.
Someone with years of trial experience and is well-versed in Atlanta’s complex DUI code is a plus. From getting your charges reduced to proving they should be dismissed entirely, count on a local DUI defense attorney help you achieve the best possible results in court. If you or someone you know has been charged with Atlanta DUI Criminal Offense charge, you are going to need a Atlanta Criminal Defense Attorney who understands the system. Contact the Howard Law Group ASAP.