There are many reasons why someone would miss a DUI court date. Sometimes, people don’t get proper notification about where and when they should appear. Others forget or get caught up with another task and don’t make it in time. Then, there are people who panic.
Criminal charges are scary and for some individuals, they are just too much to handle. A conviction for driving under the influence of intoxicants can have a significant impact on the rest of an individual’s life. It can result in high fines and fees, the loss of your driver’s license, and even jail time. Even a charge without conviction can cause you to lose your job or get rejected from universities.
Therefore, some people who are facing DUI charges opt not to turn up for court. They believe that if they don’t show up, they won’t have to face the consequences. Unfortunately, missing a DUI court date can actually make things worse for. If you are facing DUI charges, you should take careful note of everything that you’re required to do. If you’re in doubt, seek confirmation from your DUI attorney in Portland, Oregon. When they advise you of your court date, you should make sure you attend. That way you can’t avoid creating further problems.
Penalties for Failing to Appear for Your DUI Court Date
If you miss a court date in Oregon, a bench warrant would likely be issued for your arrest. You could have to deal with jail time and fines whenever the authorities catch up with you. You would then need legal assistance in handling both the DUI charge and the charges associated with failing to appear in court. If you’ve only recently realized you missed court and you haven’t been arrested as yet, you may be able to get ahead of the situation. You may be able to simply get a new court date, but this not guaranteed. Let’s look at some of the possible outcomes if you don’t turn up for court when you’re supposed to.
The seriousness of your charge for failing to appear will depend on your original charges. The more serious your charges, the more seriously the court will take your failure to appear.
If you were charged with felony DUI, you would likely face a charge of 1st degree failure to appear. This is a class C felony and you could spend up to five years in prison and have to pay as much as $125,000. If your DUI was a misdemeanor, you will be charged with 2nd degree failure to appear. This carries a fine of up to $6,250 and a maximum of one year in jail.
You will need to take responsibility for your failure to appear in court. As soon as you realize what happened, you must contact an attorney. If there is a warrant out for your arrest, they will find the best way to handle it, so you get as favorable an outcome as possible. If you’ve already been arrested, your situation is even more urgent, and your attorney will have fewer options at your disposal.
What to Do If You’re Facing DUI Charges
As you may now realize, everything you do after you’re charged with a DUI matters. Even though it’s a common charge, it’s serious and you need to treat it as such. The court won’t overlook your failure to appear. That being said, being charged with a DUI doesn’t mean you will be convicted so you shouldn’t skip court out of fear. DUI charges aren’t always fair. Breathalyzer tests can be flawed, and field sobriety tests are almost guaranteed to make you fail. Your attorney can challenge these in court.
Even if you were driving while intoxicated and you’re ready to admit it, you won’t automatically be thrown in jail. If it’s your first offense you may be eligible for the state’s diversion program. However, you’ll still need an attorney to work on your behalf. The prosecution’s role is to mount a strong case against you and the judge is a neutral third party. Your lawyer will ensure your rights are protected and help to limit the negative impact of a DUI on your life.
Call the Trilogy Law Group Today to Discuss Your Case
One of the most important parts of fighting a DUI charge is hiring the right DUI lawyer in Portland. Among the many things that the attorneys at the Trilogy Law Group will do is ensure that you know when to appear in court. Then, we will do everything possible to help you avoid conviction or at least get the lowest possible punishment. Contact us today to set up an appointment.