There are some mistakes that go away over time, and there are others that just stick for life. Unfortunately, a DUI offense falls into the latter group, especially for residents of South Carolina. A DUI stays on a driving record for a period of 10 years, after which it is removed. And if you are wondering why it is important to steer clear of one, DUIs stick on one’s criminal record forever.
Having a DUI increases an individual’s insurance premiums. However, these premiums reduce over time, provided that the person is not convicted of another DUI. Since this charge remains on a criminal record for life, it is best that the offender gets a DUI lawyer to fight the charge.
Difference Between A DUI And A DUAC
In South Carolina, three different blood levels are used to determine if a driver is under the influence of alcohol or not. Blood alcohol content (BAC) is a measurement of the amount of alcohol concentration in one’s bloodstream. Here are the three BAC limits in SC:
- Below 0.05 – This implies that the driver is not under the influence of alcohol
- Above 0.05 but below 0.08 – There is no assumption of alcohol intoxication, but other evidence can be used to determine if the driver is impaired or not.
- Above 0.08 – There is a strong possibility that the driver is under the influence of alcohol.
With these limits, a police officer can determine a DUI and a DUAC. What differentiates these terms? A DUI charge implies that the driver in question operated the vehicle while impaired, even if his or her BAC is below 0.08. Signs may include swerving between lanes and breaking traffic rules and regulations.
However, if the person’s BAC is above 0.08, then he or she will face a DUAC charge. Also, such an individual does not have to be impaired to be charged with a DUAC. However, this can only happen if the person is tested within two hours of a traffic stop and if there is a legal justification to pull him or her over.
Avoiding A DUI On Your Record
No driver loves to get charged with a DUI. If you are wondering How long does a DUI stay on your record in South Carolina?, it is for life. However, facing an arrest is not equivalent to being convicted. With a reliable attorney, you can avoid a DUI charge in the following conditions:
- An unlawful arrest – Drivers can use the violation of rights as a defense against illegal arrest or an unlawful stop.
- No sign of impairment – If your BAC was below 0.08 and you showed no signs of impairment, this evidence is supportive of your claim against the charge.
- If there was no recorded arrest – It is mandatory under South Carolina law for officers to videotape traffic stops or arrests using their vehicle dash cams. Failure to do so can weaken the prosecution’s case.
- Faulty Breathalyzer – This device is known to be very delicate. Hence, it is possible to have an incorrect result.
Hiring A DUI Defense Lawyer
DUI charges can be quite challenging for many drivers. However, with the help of a reputable DUI defense lawyer, you can get a positive result. If you find yourself charged with a DUI, do not hesitate to get in touch with a lawyer.