If you have been charged with driving under the influence in Virginia, you could be subject to a range of serious punishments. Along with potentially causing a devastating crash, DUI charges are also associated with legal repercussions, some of which can have an impact on multiple areas of your life. Very Well Mind explains a few of the consequences that may occur when you are caught drinking and driving.
Driver’s license suspension
Most DUI convictions are accompanied by a loss of license for a period of time. This is true of even first offenses, as more and more states are enacting harsher penalties to deter DUIs from occurring. If you must drive for work, you can apply for a hardship license, which affords limited driving privileges. For repeat offenders, driving privileges may be revoked permanently.
Ignition interlock devices
Once your driving privileges have been reinstated, your vehicle may be outfitted with an ignition interlock device. Much like a breathalyzer, these devices determine your blood alcohol concentration before allowing you to operate a vehicle. If your results are over the legal limit, your vehicle will not start. You will also be subject to fines and other penalties. In most cases, the person with the DUI conviction must pay for the device to be installed, as well as any maintenance fees.
People with DUIs are given alcohol evaluations, which determines whether there is an underlying addiction issue. An evaluation is often given in conjunction with an alcohol education class, which illustrates the many dangers of drinking and driving. You may also be ordered to alcohol counseling or rehabilitation. Completion of these courses or rehab stints is a must according to the court. Otherwise, you may be subject to jail time.