Call Us 24 hours / 7 days a week

In The News

Tampa DUI Lawyer

Drinking and driving is a serious offense and something we should all avoid whenever possible. However, sometimes we make mistakes and we need the help of a Tampa DUI lawyer. Facing a drinking and driving offense without a lawyer on your side can quickly turn into your worst nightmare. If you need an attorney, we can help.

Since most DUI cases are not as easy to handle as they may appear, good defense attorney can give you a little peace of mind. With the help of a DUI lawyer in Tampa, you will know what to expect and when to expect it. Hiring the right attorney makes all the difference. You should fully understand the possible penalties, which your attorney will explain to you completely.

Facing a Drunk Driving Conviction With a Tampa DUI Attorney

The state of Florida takes offenses involving alcohol very seriously and the penalties won’t include just a slap on the wrist. Accidents resulting from a DUI often come with serious injuries and even deaths. Due to the dangers associated with drinking and driving, the consequences are very still. With the right Tampa DUI attorney, you may face lesser charges.

Your First Tampa DUI

  • First Steps For a DUI in Tampa

The first DUI in Tampa, Florida comes with many consequences including community service, probation, large fines and possible jail time. Assuming you didn’t cause an accident, any injuries or damage to property, the charges may include:

  • A fine of $500 to $1,000
  • Potentially one-year probation
  • Community services up to 50 hours (Serving the actual time can be avoided by paying an additional fine of $10 per hour assigned.)
  • Jail time ranging from eight-hours to six months
  • Driver’s license revocation from 6 to 12 months
  • Mandatory DUI school with a Level I twelve hour class
  • Your vehicle will be impounded and potentially immobilized

If a minor is in the car with you or your blood alcohol level is .15 or higher, you can face up to nine months in jail, a fine ranging from $1,000 to $2,000 and longer community service. Those receiving their first DUI offense may be able to receive a hardship driver’s license for business or work purposes. DUI school must be completed first and FR-44 insurance is required with a $115 administrative free and a $60 reinstatement fee.

Multiple offenses come with stronger penalties. If you’ve been convicted of a DUI in the past and become arrested again, your need for a DUI attorney in Tampa for your case is vital. The protection a defense attorney can provide can lessen the blow of the consequences you face.

Your Second DUI

The consequences of a second DUI in Tampa can vary, depending on how long it’s been since your first conviction. If the second conviction happens within five years of your first DUI offense, you may face the following:

  • Jail time – minimum of 10 days and up to nine months (If a minor was in the vehicle or your BAL is .15 or higher, you can face up to a one-year in jail.)
  • Fines ranging from $1,000 up to $2,000 (Fines are doubled if your BAL is .15 or higher or you have a minor in the vehicle.)
  • One-year of probation
  • A minimum of 50 hours community service or an additional fine of $10 per hour of community service
  • A minimum license revocation period of five years with no possibility of a hardship reinstatement for the first year
  • Vehicle impoundment of at least 30 days

After the first year, you may apply for a hardship reinstatement upon completion of DUI School. You must also remain in a supervised DUI program throughout the rest of the revocation period. Any missed treatment will result in the cancellation of your hardship driver’s license. You must also show that you haven’t consumed any alcohol in the past year and an ignition interlock device must be installed on your vehicle.

If your second DUI conviction happens five years after your first conviction, it’s usually treated like a first offense. However, you may face larger fines, more jail time and a mandatory ignition interlock device for one year. Even though the minimum penalties may be the same as your first offense, the prosecutor could ask for more jail time and larger penalties. Make sure you hire one of the best Tampa DUI lawyers if you’re facing your second DUI charge.

Your Third DUI

In Tampa, if you find yourself facing a potential third DUI, the penalties can be very severe. You will need the help of top Tampa DUI attorneys if you expect to avoid the maximum penalties.

Prosecutors often seek the harshest punishment, especially if your prior convictions were in the past ten years. If your last DUI conviction happened more than ten years ago, you may face the following:

  • Required jail time up to 12 months and at least 30 days
  • Up to one-year probation
  • Fines ranging from $2,000 to $5,000
  • Minimum driver’s license revocation of 180 days and a maximum of one-year
  • Mandatory ignition interlock device
  • Court ordered DUI School with Level II classes
  • Vehicle impoundment up to 90-days after incarceration

If your third conviction happens within ten-years of your last conviction, you face severe felony DUI penalties including:

  • Mandatory jail time of 30 days
  • Fines up to $5,000
  • Vehicle impoundment of 90 days
  • Up to ten-year driver’s license revocation with no chance of a hardship reinstatement for the first two years
  • Mandatory ignition interlock device
  • Completion of DUI School

When Facing a Charge, Get a Tampa DUI Law Firm

The state of Florida has a zero tolerance policy for drivers under 21 years of age. If you’re under 21 and driving with a blood alcohol level of .02 or higher, you automatically lose your driver’s license for six-months. It only takes one drink to reach a .02 BAL. If you find yourself in this situation, you will need to hire one of the DUI attorneys in Tampa to handle your case.

Keep in mind, these penalties are considered the minimum requirements used in a Tampa DUI conviction. If you cause an accident, injure someone, cause property damage or cause a death, you will face multiple charges including more jail time and stiffer penalties. Anytime you face a DUI charge, a Tampa DUI lawyer can make sure you have the best defense possible.

Facing this charge alone and pleading “guilty” will often lead to harsh penalties including more jail time. DUI cases are taken very serious in Florida and you won’t just walk out of the courtroom with a small fine. If you’ve been arrested and you face potential conviction of a DUI, you need a skilled Tampa DUI attorney for your defense.

Tampa Drunk Driving Accident Lawyer

Drunk driving accidents are all too common in Florida. Roughly one in three traffic fatalities involves a substance-impaired driver. Ranked third in nation for highest number of drunk driving accidents (superseded by only Texas and California), Florida law enforcement is extremely strict in its enforcement of DUI laws and drunk driving accidents are prosecuted vigorously by the department of justice.

The fact is, if you have been involved in a traffic accident and an officer suspects you are under the influence, you may be arrested and the prosecution will take the possibility of a DUI into consideration when determining charges. The penalties for a DUI conviction involving an accident in which someone is injured are substantial. In addition to the statutory penalties relating to a DUI conviction, you may also be facing additional fines and jail time, and possible felony charges. If convicted, it will remain on your criminal record indefinitely.

Do I Need a Tampa Drunk Driving Accident Attorney?

At difficult times like these, it is imperative that you retain a qualified attorney dedicated to DUI accident defense like those at the law firm of Katz & Phillips, P.A.

Penalties relating to accidents with injuries or property damage:

  • First-Degree Misdemeanor (involving property damage or personal injury): not more than $1,000 fine, and not more than 1-year imprisonment (in addition to statutory DUI penalties)
  • Third-Degree Felony (causes serious bodily injury while driving under the influence): not more than $5,000 fine, and not more than 5 years imprisonment (in addition to statutory DUI penalties)
  • DUI Manslaughter and Vehicular Homicide (second-degree felony): not more than $10,000 fine, and 15 years imprisonment (in addition to statutory DUI penalties)
  • DUI Manslaughter and Vehicular Homicide-Leaving the Scene (first-degree felony): not more than $10,000 fine, and 30 years imprisonment (in addition to statutory DUI penalties)

Felony convictions in particular bring devastating permanent sanctions. For example, in the state of Florida you would be prohibited from owning a firearm, prohibited from obtaining an occupational license (including physicians, lawyers, massage therapists, florists, and others), and loss of the right to vote and stand on a public jury.

Fighting Your DUI Accident Charges in Tampa

It is, however, difficult for the prosecution to meet the burden of evidence required to prove that you were in fact involved in a drunk driving accident in Tampa. A competent Tampa DUI attorney can help your DUI defense by:

  • Challenging the results of chemical blood alcohol level tests
  • Challenging the validity of a field sobriety test
  • Challenging the conditions during which you were taken into custody
  • Challenging police or prosecutorial negligence

Call Our Tampa Drunk Driving Accidents Law Firm

At the law firm of Katz & Phillips, P.A., some of our attorneys have past experience in criminal prosecution and are intimately familiar with a district attorney’s strategy. We use this knowledge to our clients’ advantage, putting together a specialized and aggressive defense on our clients’ behalf.

We have decades of collective experience assisting clients in the Tampa area. If you have been arrested for a drunk driving accident in Tampa, call our offices today for a free consultation with one of our DUI attorneys. We will evaluate your case with you and discuss your options. There is no obligation, call today: .

Sanford, Longwood and Tavares Penalties for DUI

Confronting DUI charges in Florida, especially with previous convictions, is an undeniably difficult matter. However, our expertise at Katz & Phillips, P.A., could be your advantage. Our firm has a robust track record of defending clients with multiple DUI offenses across Sanford, Tavares, Longwood, and other Florida locales. Our legal team, deeply versed in DUI defense, includes founding partner David Katz, whose background as a former prosecutor and DUI/Intoxilyzer Specialist enriches our strategic approach.

Differences in Penalties Based on Circumstances:

In Florida, DUI penalties can significantly vary based on several aggravating factors, including the driver’s Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) level, involvement in accidents, and the presence of minors in the vehicle. A higher BAC level typically results in harsher penalties. For instance, a BAC level of 0.15% or higher, substantially above the legal limit of 0.08%, often leads to increased fines, longer jail sentences, and extended periods for mandatory ignition interlock devices.

In cases where a DUI results in an accident, especially if it causes injury or death, the consequences become more severe. These scenarios can elevate a DUI charge to a felony with substantial prison time, larger fines, and longer license suspension periods. Furthermore, the involvement of minors in the vehicle during a DUI incident is another critical factor. If convicted of DUI with a minor passenger, a driver faces heightened penalties, reflecting the increased risk and irresponsibility of such an act. These can include extended jail time and increased fines.

Penalties for First DUI

The penalties for a first DUI offense in Florida are as follows:

  1. Fines The fine for a first DUI can range from $500 to $1,000. If the Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) is 0.15% or higher, or if a minor is in the vehicle, the fine ranges from $1,000 to $2,000.
  2. Community Service Mandatory 50 hours of community service or an additional fine of $10 for each required hour of community service.
  3. Probation The total period of probation and incarceration may not exceed one year.
  4. Imprisonment For a first DUI, the imprisonment term can be up to 6 months. If the BAC is 0.15% or higher, or a minor is in the vehicle, imprisonment can be for up to 9 months.
  5. License Revocation A minimum of 180 days and up to one year for a first offense.
  6. DUI School Mandatory attendance at a DUI Substance Abuse Course.
  7. Evaluation If recommended, the offender must undergo a substance abuse evaluation and treatment.
  8. Vehicle Impoundment The vehicle may be impounded for 10 days, which cannot occur concurrently with the incarceration.

It’s important to note that these penalties can be influenced by the specific circumstances of each case and the discretion of the court. Legal representation may also impact the final outcome of sentencing.

Understanding the Penalties for Multiple DUI Offenses

Specific penalties for DUI (Driving Under the Influence) in Florida may vary, depending upon your particular case. A first conviction can be costly enough, in terms of both time and money. However, being convicted of a subsequent DUI can almost guarantee a stiffening of those penalties. Following is a basic outline of penalties a driver may face for a second or third DUI conviction:

Second DUI Conviction (within five years)

  • Five-year license suspension
  • 10 days to nine months in jail
  • $1,000 to $2,000 in fines and court fees
  • 12 months probation
  • 30-day vehicle impoundment

Third DUI Conviction (within 10 years)

  • 10 year license suspension
  • 90 days to five years in prison
  • $2,000 to $3,000 in fines and court fees
  • 90-day vehicle impoundment
  • Ignition interlock device for a minimum of two years

Role of Legal Representation in DUI Cases

A criminal defense attorney plays a crucial role in mitigating penalties or challenging evidence in DUI cases. One common strategy is questioning the accuracy and calibration of breathalyzer tests. Attorneys often scrutinize the maintenance records of these devices, as any irregularity can lead to inaccurate BAC readings. Moreover, the method and timing of the test are critical; improper administration can invalidate results.

Another key defense strategy involves examining the legality of the traffic stop and arrest procedure. Attorneys assess whether the police had a valid reason (reasonable suspicion) to stop the vehicle and if they followed proper protocol during the arrest, including the administration of field sobriety tests. Any procedural errors or violations of constitutional rights can lead to evidence being dismissed.

Additionally, lawyers might investigate the possibility of medical conditions or external factors that could falsely elevate BAC readings. By leveraging these strategies, a skilled attorney can significantly influence the outcome of a DUI case, potentially reducing charges or achieving a dismissal.

Defending Drivers in Lake County and Seminole County, Florida

Facing Florida DUI charges when you already have one or more such convictions on your record is, to be blunt, a very serious situation. We may be able to help. At Katz & Phillips, P.A., we have represented hundreds of clients facing multiple DUI offenses throughout Sanford, Tavares, Longwood, and surrounding areas in Florida. Our attorneys are highly experienced in defending DUI charges, and founding partner David Katz is a former prosecutor and DUI/Intoxilyzer Specialist.

We begin the defense process by offering a free initial consultation with a skilled DUI attorney to discuss your case and how our firm can assist. When a client is facing a subsequent DUI conviction, we can work not only to challenge the current charges you are facing but also to question or disprove previous convictions. We fight to assert and defend your legal rights every step of the way through both the criminal court proceedings and your DMV hearing.

If you are facing a second, third, or even your first DUI conviction, don’t hesitate to contact a DUI lawyer at Katz & Phillips, P.A. today for a free consultation regarding your case.

Sanford, Longwood and Tavares DUI With Injury Lawyer

DUI with injury, recognized as one of the gravest drunk driving offenses, carries significant legal, personal, and ethical implications. This charge stands out due to the direct harm it causes to others, elevating its seriousness beyond standard DUI offenses.

In jurisdictions like Florida, DUI with injury often leads to felony charges, resulting in more stringent penalties such as extended jail time, substantial fines, and longer probation periods. The prosecution of these cases is notably aggressive, reflecting societal emphasis on preventing drunk driving and its potential for causing harm.

The repercussions for those convicted extend beyond legal penalties; they face profound impacts on their careers, particularly in sectors demanding clean driving records or security clearances. The social stigma attached to causing injury while intoxicated adds another layer of consequence. Additionally, individuals face civil liabilities, with injured parties possibly seeking compensation for damages like medical expenses and lost wages, imposing a lasting financial burden. The ethical dimension of DUI with injury charges is also significant, often bringing about a deeper sense of remorse and understanding of the consequences of drunk driving compared to standard DUIs.

Defending these charges is complex, involving aspects like accident reconstruction and medical testimony to challenge the link between the driver’s impairment and the accident. Overall, DUI with injury is a stark reminder of the heightened responsibility drivers bear to avoid operating vehicles under the influence, highlighting the severe consequences when this responsibility is neglected. At Katz & Phillips, P.A., we represent clients facing DUI charges–including DUI with injury– throughout Sanford, Tavares, Longwood, and surrounding areas in Florida.

Fight Your Charge With a Sanford, Longwood and Tavares DUI With Injury Attorney

DUI charges of any kind are serious, but those involving injury to another person are especially so. It is critical to seek immediate representation to protect your freedom and driving privileges.

Katz & Phillips works to defend your rights from the very outset of the case by offering a free case evaluation with one of our experienced DUI defense attorneys. You can ask any questions and express any concerns, and have them addressed in an honest, straightforward manner, taking care to keep your best interests at heart.

DUI With Injury – Hard-Hitting Defense Throughout Florida

DUI with injury occurs when a driver under the influence of alcohol or drugs causes a traffic accident that results in injury to another person, whether a pedestrian, cyclist, driver or passenger from another vehicle. A DUI accident involving property damage or minor injury is a misdemeanor offense, punishable by up to a year in jail and/or a fine of up to $1,000. However, a DUI accident causing serious bodily injury is a felony offense, punishable by up to five years in Florida state prison.

The outcome of a DUI with injury case is heavily dependent on establishing the actual cause of the accident and the resultant injuries. In these situations, law enforcement officers often operate under the presumption that a driver who has consumed alcohol, even minimally, is responsible for the accident. This assumption, however, isn’t always accurate, and overcoming this bias is a critical aspect of the defense strategy.

To counter this presumption and avoid a wrongful conviction, a defense lawyer must meticulously dismantle the prosecution’s narrative. This is primarily done through two key methods: accident reconstruction and the utilization of expert witness testimony.

Accident Reconstruction

This is a scientific process where specialists analyze the accident scene, vehicle damage, skid marks, and other physical evidence to piece together how the accident occurred. The goal is to objectively determine the sequence of events leading up to the accident. This analysis can reveal crucial details, such as the speed of the vehicles, the point of impact, and whether other factors (like road conditions or actions of other drivers) may have contributed to the accident. Such findings are instrumental in challenging the assertion that the defendant’s alleged intoxication was the sole or primary cause of the accident.

Expert Witness Testimony

Expert witnesses, including accident reconstructionists, medical professionals, and toxicologists, play a pivotal role in interpreting technical data and presenting it in a comprehensible manner to the court. For instance, a toxicologist can provide insights into how the defendant’s blood alcohol content (BAC) level might have affected their driving abilities, or whether it was even a significant factor in the accident. Medical experts can assess the extent and cause of injuries, possibly demonstrating that they were not as severe as claimed or were not directly caused by the accident.

By combining these approaches, a defense attorney aims to create reasonable doubt about the defendant’s culpability. They strive to show that factors other than the defendant’s alleged impairment could have led to the accident, thus challenging the direct causation link essential for a DUI with injury conviction. This approach is not about evading responsibility but ensuring a fair and just evaluation of the incident based on objective evidence and expert analyses.

Contact Katz & Phillips, P.A. as Your Sanford, Longwood and Tavares DUI With Injury Law Firm

If you find yourself facing DUI with Injury charges, it’s crucial to act swiftly and decisively. Contact a knowledgeable DUI lawyer at Katz & Phillips, P.A. immediately to initiate a strong, effective defense strategy. Our team of experienced attorneys is dedicated to protecting your rights and guiding you through this challenging time.

We understand the complexities of DUI cases and are prepared to offer the comprehensive legal support you need. Don’t let uncertainty dictate your future – get your defense into gear today. Call Katz & Phillips, P.A. for a detailed consultation and take the first step towards safeguarding your freedom and your future.

Sanford, Langwood, and Tavares Out of State DUI Lawyer

What should you do if you are arrested for a DUI in Florida but reside in another state? If you or someone you know is an out-of-state driver but is facing drunken driving charges in Florida, you probably have a lot of questions.

We at Katz & Phillips, P.A. would like to help answer those questions, so we have provided some basic information on out-of-state DUI cases below.

If you have more questions or would like to discuss your case in more depth, we invite you to contact one of our experienced DUI lawyers for a free case evaluation.

Legal Differences in Dui Cases, Explained by a Sanford, Langwood, and Tavares Out-Of-State Dui Attorney

When an out-of-state resident faces a DUI charge in Florida, unique legal challenges and nuances arise. Florida’s DUI laws, while having some commonalities with other states, have distinct features that can significantly impact non-residents differently. One of the main challenges is jurisdictional: defending a DUI case in Florida while residing in another state complicates the ability to participate in the legal process and requires strategic planning.

Florida’s DUI penalties, including fines, jail time, and mandatory DUI school, can vary from those in other states. For out-of-state residents, this might mean navigating unfamiliar legal terrain and potentially harsher penalties. Additionally, Florida’s approach to driver’s license suspension is a critical aspect. While the state cannot directly suspend an out-of-state driver’s license, it can revoke their privilege to drive within Florida. Under the Interstate Driver’s License Compact, Florida will report the conviction to the driver’s home state, possibly leading to license suspension there as well.

Representing an out-of-state DUI defendant requires specialized legal knowledge. A Florida-based DUI attorney can be invaluable in such cases, providing representation in local courts and understanding Florida’s specific DUI laws. These attorneys can often handle certain aspects of the case without the client’s presence, easing the burden on those who cannot travel back and forth.

Finally, a DUI conviction in Florida can affect future travel to the state. It’s important for out-of-state residents to understand how a conviction might impact their ability to drive in Florida in the future, especially if they are frequent visitors.

Understanding these legal differences and preparing accordingly is crucial for any out-of-state resident facing DUI charges in Florida.

What Is the Interstate Drivers License Compact?

The limitation of Florida’s jurisdiction over an out-of-state driver’s license is a significant aspect to consider in DUI cases. While Florida law enforcement cannot directly suspend a driver’s license issued by another state, this does not imply that there are no repercussions in the driver’s home state following a DUI arrest in Florida.

This is primarily due to the Interstate Driver’s License Compact (IDLC), an agreement between most states in the U.S. to share information about traffic violations of non-residents with their home states. The Compact serves as a means of ensuring that drivers cannot avoid the consequences of driving offenses committed outside their home state.

When a driver is arrested and convicted of a DUI in Florida, this information is typically reported to their home state under the provisions of the IDLC. The home state, upon receiving this report, may then take action based on its own laws regarding DUI offenses. This often includes measures like suspending the driver’s license, even though the offense occurred in Florida.

The impact of this can be significant for out-of-state drivers. The DUI conviction in Florida can lead to the same, if not more severe, penalties as if the offense had occurred in their home state. This includes not only license suspension but also potential increases in insurance rates, fines, and the requirement to attend DUI programs or community service according to their state’s regulations.

Moreover, the record of a DUI conviction in Florida will be reflected in the driver’s history, potentially affecting future background checks, employment opportunities, and insurance premiums. This emphasizes the importance for out-of-state drivers to take DUI charges in Florida seriously and consider the broader implications on their driving privileges and legal standing in their home state.

Challenge Your Charge With Katz & Phillips: Your Sanford, Langwood, and Tavares Out-Of-State Dui Law Firm

Facing out-of-state DUI charges can present a particularly difficult situation for any driver. What do you do if you need to leave Florida to go back home? Do the charges mean you are prevented from leaving the state? Fortunately, the answer is “no.” When you work with Katz & Phillips, your DUI attorney can represent you at both your DMV hearing and in criminal court without your presence being necessary.

So, if you are a non-Florida resident, but find yourself facing DUI charges in Lake or Seminole County, don’t hesitate another moment. Call the DUI legal team at Katz & Phillips, P.A. today to learn more about how we can help you–no matter where you live or work.

If you’re facing out-of-state DUI charges in Florida, navigating the legal system can be daunting and complex. That’s where Katz & Phillips can assist. We specialize in managing DUI cases for non-residents and understand the intricacies of Florida’s DUI laws and how they intersect with other states’ regulations. By contacting our office, you can schedule a complimentary consultation with one of our experienced DUI attorneys. During this consultation, we will provide you with a clear understanding of your legal options and how we can support you in addressing your charges. Let us help you through this challenging time with our expertise and dedicated legal support. Reach out to Katz & Phillips today to take the first step towards resolving your out-of-state DUI charges effectively.

Sanford, Longwood and Tavares Underage DUI Lawyer

Sanford, Longwood, and Tavares Underage DUI Attorneys Ready to Fight for You

DUI laws are slightly different regarding drivers under the age of 21. As a Florida resident must be at least 21 years of age to lawfully consume alcohol, the State authorizes law enforcement personnel to detain any driver under the age of 21 if the officer has probable cause to believe that he or she has any level of alcohol in his or her system. The officer also has the authority to request the driver to submit to a breath or blood test to determine the presence and/or level of blood alcohol, and a driver found to have virtually any blood alcohol may have his or her driver’s license suspended.

Any driver under the age of 21 who operates a motor vehicle while shown to have a blood alcohol content of 0.02% or greater may face a six-month license suspension by the Florida DHSMV. A second or subsequent underage DUI offense may result in a year-long license suspension. Any driver under the age of 21 who refuses to submit to a breath or blood test faces increased penalties. A first refusal will result in driver’s license suspension for one year. A second or subsequent refusal may result in an 18-month suspension.

Underage DUI Defense Attorneys With Experience Serving Sanford, Longwood, and Tavares

Katz & Phillips, P.A. has a wealth of experience defending many types of drunk driving charges, and this has equipped us with a set of strategies that will work for your underage DUI case.

In underage DUI cases, defense strategies are pivotal in challenging the charges and protecting the rights of the accused. A common defense approach is contesting the legality of the initial traffic stop. This involves scrutinizing whether law enforcement had a valid reason or probable cause to make the stop. If it’s determined that the stop was without legal justification, evidence obtained thereafter, such as breathalyzer results, may be deemed inadmissible in court.

Another critical defense tactic focuses on the accuracy and administration of breathalyzer tests. Defense attorneys often question the calibration and maintenance of the testing device, as well as the protocol followed during the test. Any procedural errors or lapses in maintaining the equipment can cast doubt on the reliability of the BAC results.

Procedural defenses play a significant role as well. This includes examining the arrest process, ensuring that the accused’s rights were not violated and that proper legal procedures were followed. For instance, if the arresting officer failed to read the Miranda rights to the underage individual, this could impact the case’s outcome.

These defensive strategies aim not just to challenge the evidence, but also to uphold the legal rights of the underage individual, ensuring a fair and just process in the complex landscape of DUI litigation.

Understanding Florida’s Zero Tolerance Laws

Florida’s approach to underage drinking and driving is encapsulated in its “Zero Tolerance” laws, which are markedly stricter than DUI laws for those over 21. These laws underscore the state’s firm stance against underage drinking and driving, recognizing the heightened risks involved. While the standard legal limit for blood alcohol content (BAC) in drivers over 21 is 0.08%, for those under 21, this threshold is significantly lower at 0.02%. This difference is crucial as it reflects the state’s intent to discourage any level of alcohol consumption by underage drivers.

The rationale behind the stringent 0.02% limit is multifaceted. Firstly, it acknowledges the physiological effects of alcohol on younger individuals, who may be more impaired by smaller amounts of alcohol compared to adults. Additionally, it serves as a preventive measure, aiming to deter underage drinking entirely, considering the legal drinking age in Florida is 21. Furthermore, these laws are intended to instill responsible behaviors in young drivers, promoting safety for both themselves and others on the road.

The Zero Tolerance policy thus plays a dual role: it acts as a legal deterrent against underage drinking and driving, and it also serves an educational purpose, emphasizing the serious repercussions of such actions. This approach shows Florida’s commitment to reducing DUI-related incidents among underage drivers and ensuring safer roadways for all.

Role of Parents in Underage DUI Cases

In underage DUI cases, parents play a crucial role. It’s vital to engage a skilled DUI attorney who specializes in underage cases for legal guidance. Emotionally, parents should provide support and understanding, recognizing the stress and fear their child may be experiencing. Open, non-judgmental communication is key, as is educating themselves about the legal process. Parents can also help by discussing the consequences of DUI and reinforcing responsible behavior. This approach not only aids in navigating the legal challenges but also supports the child’s emotional well-being, fostering a constructive environment for facing and learning from the situation.

Get an Experienced Sanford, Longwood, and Tavares Underage DUI Law Firm

If you or your under-21 child are facing underage DUI charges in Sanford, Longwood or Tavares, Fla., a DUI lawyer at Katz & Phillips, P.A. may be able to help. Our attorneys have a great deal of experience in defending all types of drunk driving charges, and we will apply our extensive knowledge of underage DUI law to defend you or your child against license suspension or possible criminal charges, depending upon the nature of your case.

Don’t hesitate. If you or your child are charged with under-21 DUI in Seminole or Lake County, contact a DUI attorney at Katz & Phillips today for more information and/or to arrange a defense.

Sanford, Longwood and Tavares DMV Hearing Lawyer

Following a DUI arrest, you have only 10 days to request a formal review hearing regarding the suspension of your driver’s license. Most commonly referred to as a DMV hearing or DHSMV hearing, this is your chance to contest your license suspension and have your driver’s license reinstated. If you do not request your DMV hearing within 10 days of your arrest or receiving your notice of suspension, your driver’s license will be suspended – regardless of whether you are found guilty in criminal court.

An experienced DUI attorney, such as one the attorneys at Katz & Phillips, P.A., can help defend and preserve your rights during your DMV hearing. By scheduling and preparing for your hearing as a criminal court case, your attorney gathers important information and evidence to support your defense. This process is valuable in all phases of your defense, as the information gathered during this early preparation may be used to support your criminal defense as well as during your administrative license suspension hearing.

Working With a Sanford, Longwood, and Tavares DMV Hearing Attorney

Attorneys play a crucial role in DMV hearings, particularly in cases involving DUI-related license suspensions. Their expertise and strategies are pivotal in navigating the complexities of these hearings. Here’s how they assist:

  • Evaluating Evidence: Attorneys meticulously review all the evidence presented in the DUI case, including police reports, breathalyzer results, and witness statements. They look for inconsistencies or procedural errors that could be used to challenge the suspension.
  • Challenging Test Results: If the suspension is based on breath or blood test results, attorneys may question the accuracy and calibration of the testing equipment, the qualifications of the person who administered the test, and the procedure followed during testing.
  • Probable Cause Examination: They scrutinize the officer’s probable cause for initiating the DUI stop. Any indication of an unlawful stop or lack of reasonable suspicion can be grounds to contest the license suspension.
  • Presenting Alternative Explanations: In some cases, attorneys may present alternative explanations for the behavior or symptoms that led to the DUI charge, such as medical conditions or environmental factors.

What is a DMV Hearing?

A DMV hearing is held in the event of a DUI arrest in which the defendant took a breath or blood test and failed, or refused the testing altogether. A formal review hearing concerning a failed breath test will be set to determine:

  • Whether the officer had probable cause to suspect you of driving under the influence
  • Whether you had a blood alcohol concentration above the legal limit
    A formal review hearing concerning a refused breath test will be held to determine:
  • Whether the officer had probable cause to believe you were driving under the influence
  • Whether you actually refused breath or blood testing
  • Whether you were informed of the consequences of refusing to undergo breath or blood testing

Immediate Steps Post-DUI Arrest

Preparing for a DMV hearing after a DUI arrest is critical for protecting one’s driving privileges. Here’s a comprehensive guide on how individuals can prepare for their DMV hearing:

  • Request the Hearing: Remember, in many states, including Florida, there’s a limited time frame (often 10 days) post-arrest to request a DMV hearing. Failing to do so can result in an automatic license suspension.
  • Document the Incident: Write down everything about the DUI stop and arrest while it’s fresh in your memory. Include details like the time of the stop, what you were doing prior, the officer’s behavior, and any statements made.
  • Gather Evidence: Collect any evidence that could be relevant, such as receipts, photographs, or witness contact information that can support your account of the events.

Common Defense Tactics in DMV Hearings

In DMV hearings, particularly for DUI cases, several defense tactics are employed by attorneys to influence the outcome favorably. Challenging the legality of the initial traffic stop is a common strategy, arguing that the stop lacked probable cause, which can lead to the dismissal of evidence obtained during the stop. Defense lawyers may also question the accuracy and administration of field sobriety and breathalyzer tests, highlighting issues such as improper calibration, operator qualifications, and testing procedures. Medical conditions that might mimic DUI symptoms or affect test results are often presented to challenge the basis of the charge. Additionally, attorneys scrutinize the arrest process, focusing on any procedural missteps or failure to follow proper Miranda rights, which could result in the suppression of evidence. The chain of custody for chemical tests is another area of contention, as any errors can cast doubt on the sample’s integrity. Defense tactics also include contesting the officer’s subjective observations, addressing inaccuracies in representing prior offenses, and highlighting the defendant’s reliable driving history. When combined, these strategies can significantly weaken the prosecution’s case and lead to more favorable outcomes in DMV hearings for DUI charges.

We Are the Right Sanford, Longwood and Tavares DMV Hearing Law Firm for Your Case

A Katz & Phillips DUI lawyer can work to challenge all aspects of your DMV hearing in order to help you keep your driver’s license. We recognize the importance of these hearings and know that handling it properly and professionally provides a sturdy foundation for both the hearing and the criminal case. Whether you are in Lake County, Seminole County, Orange County, or Osceola County, we have committed staff ready to serve you.

If you would like to learn more about how we at Katz & Phillips can help defend your rights during both the civil and criminal procedures of a DUI case, we encourage you to contact us as soon as possible. We are ready to defend you!

Contact Katz & Phillips, P.A today for a consultation regarding your DMV hearing.

Plant City DUI Lawyer

Accomplished Plant City DUI Attorneys

Most people mistakenly believe that it’s impossible to fight a DUI. That idea may be true without the help of an attorney skilled in the complex field of DUI defense. Only such an attorney will know what to look for in the facts and circumstances surrounding the arrest, from the initial police stop to the forensic evidence of chemical tests. At Katz & Phillips, P.A. you will find an attorney team that has focused on Florida DUI for many years. Our firm is led by former DUI prosecutors who know how the other side will create its case against you and by a Board Certified DUI Defender, one of only three such attorneys in the state. That advanced training and former prosecutor experience combined with our defense record and relentless approach to legal excellence means your case will be in reliable hands. Whatever can be done will be done to minimize the consequences of your DUI arrest in Plant City.

Drunk Driving Laws in Florida

Florida takes a hard approach to drunk and / or drugged driving due to the risk this behavior causes to public safety. According to MADD (Mothers Against Drunk Driving), 29 percent of all traffic fatalities in the state in 2012 were alcohol-related. Because of such statistics, Florida legislators and law enforcement have cracked down on DUI violations.

Drunk driving involves a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .08 percent or more. Like other states, Florida imposes many penalties on those who are convicted of any type of DUI, from first offenders to repeat offenders to those involved in DUI accidents, injuries, and fatalities. No matter what type of DUI or BUI (boating under the influence) you are facing, the consequences can range from jail terms to hefty fines, a license suspension, ignition interlock device, DUI school, probation, and an increase in your auto insurance.

For example, a first-offense DUI conviction in Plant City can result in:

  • 180 days up to one year loss of your driver’s license
  • No mandatory minimum but a possible jail time of up to six months (nine months in the case of a blood alcohol concentration of .15 percent or more)
  • Fines ranging from $500 up to $1,000 with increased fines for those with a BAC of .15 percent or higher
  • Community service requirements of up to 50 hours
  • DUI school and/or substance abuse treatment

How Katz & Phillips, P.A. Can Serve as Your Plant City DUI Law Firm

Our experienced legal team handles all aspects of any DUI case, from challenging the administrative license suspension to building your defense case through an exhaustive investigation and examination of all possible defense tactics. We represent first offenders, repeat offenders, underage offenders, commercial license offenders, those who have refused to submit to a chemical test and those who have been involved in an accident with injuries, property damage, and fatalities. No matter how complex or difficult your case may seem to be, we can help. Your situation will be addressed with the utmost care and attention to detail from our highly knowledgeable and proven defense team.

Contact us for a free, no-obligation consultation about your DUI or BUI immediately following an arrest in Plant City. Prompt assistance is available any time of the night or day to get started.

Florida Multiple DUI Charges Lawyer

Aggressive Defense With a Florida Multiple DUI Charges Attorney

Consuming a few drinks at a bar with friends may sound like a great idea but it can lead to some severe consequences if you are not careful.  One DUI conviction may not sound like a big deal, but having multiple DUI convictions on your record can be very detrimental to your future.  Prosecutors and judges will see to it that multiple DUI convicts are charged to the highest degree possible because they have a public reputation to uphold.  Consequences for a second, third or fourth-time conviction will be severe for everyone.

How a Florida Multiple DUI Charges Law Firm Can Help

Katz & Phillips, P.A. is a law firm based in Orlando, Florida, focussed on DUI defense.  Our team of lawyers are experienced and trained to aggressively fight your charges so you have a better future.  We take the time to investigate every detail of the case in order to prepare a solid and effective defense strategy to use against the prosecution.  By hiring one of our trained attorneys, we can assure you that we will try to negotiate a plea deal to get your charges reduced, try and appeal a previous DUI conviction, or take your case to trial and defend you against the prosecution’s accusations.

We May Be Able to Help You Avoid Such Penalties As:

  • Up to 5 years in prison
  • Up to $5,000 in fines
  • Driver’s license suspension or revocation
  • Mandatory DUI classes
  • Probation
  • Habitual traffic offender status (automatic 5 year license suspension)
  • Many hours of community service
  • Ignition interlock device installation
  • Increased insurance premiums

We dedicate our time and efforts to our clients throughout every process of the case so that you receive the best possible outcome.

To learn more about our aggressive DUI defense services, please don’t hesitate to contact an Orlando DUI attorney at Katz & Phillips, P.A. today!

Orlando Felony DUI Charges Lawyer

While driving under the influence is typically classified as a misdemeanor offense, certain circumstances can escalate it to a felony DUI. These circumstances might include having multiple DUI offenses, causing an accident resulting in injury or death, or driving with a minor in the vehicle. Regardless of whether you’re facing a misdemeanor or a felony DUI charge, the seriousness of the situation cannot be overstated. Your driving privileges, personal reputation, employment prospects, and even freedom are potentially at risk.

How Will an Orlando Defense Against Felony DUI Charges Attorney Help Me?

Confronted with felony DUI charges, your immediate action should be to consult an aggressive and experienced Orlando DUI lawyer. A trusted legal expert in this field is not just an asset but a necessity. You need a lawyer who understands the complexities of DUI law and is prepared to mount a vigorous defense on your behalf. They can explore every legal avenue, from examining the validity of the DUI stop to challenging the evidence presented against you. The goal is not just to avoid a felony conviction and the ensuing legal penalties but also to safeguard your future prospects and reputation. Remember, the right legal advice and representation can make a significant difference in the outcome of your case.

Florida Felony DUI Laws and Penalties

An individual may be charged with felony DUI if any of the following are true:

  • He or she was found driving with a blood alcohol concentration above .20%.
  • He or she caused a fatal accident.
  • He or she caused an accident that resulted in serious injury.
  • He or she has multiple DUI offenses on his or her driving record.
  • He or she was driving with a minor in the car.

The penalties for any felony DUI are severe.  If you are convicted of the charges, you could be sentenced to imprisonment, pay large fines, serve probation or community service, have your license suspended or revoked, or have an ignition interlock device installed on your vehicle.

In addition, you could also face criminal charges, like vehicular homicide, if you caused a fatal car accident due to driving under the influence.

Potential Defenses Against Felony DUI Charges

In defending against felony DUI charges in Orlando, several strategies can be employed, depending on the specifics of each case. These defenses are often crucial in either reducing the severity of the charges or, in some cases, leading to an acquittal:

  • Challenging the Accuracy of Sobriety Tests: Your defense can question the reliability of field sobriety tests and breathalyzers. Factors like improper calibration of equipment or the officer’s lack of training in administering the tests can be crucial points.
  • Illegal Traffic Stop Defense: If the initial traffic stop was not conducted lawfully, any evidence gathered during that stop may be inadmissible. Your attorney can argue that there was no probable cause for the stop, which can significantly impact the case.
  • Procedural Defenses: This involves scrutinizing the arrest process and handling of evidence. Any procedural errors, such as failing to read Miranda rights or mishandling blood alcohol content (BAC) samples, can be grounds for defense.
  • Medical and Health-Related Defenses: Certain medical conditions can affect the results of a BAC test. For example, conditions like diabetes or diets like the keto diet can sometimes produce false positives in breathalyzer tests.

Impact of Felony DUI on Your Life

A felony DUI conviction in Orlando carries consequences that extend far beyond legal penalties:

  • Employment Challenges: A felony conviction can hinder job prospects. Employers often conduct background checks and may be hesitant to hire someone with a felony DUI on their record.
  • Social and Personal Implications: Beyond legal ramifications, a felony DUI can affect personal relationships and social standing. The stigma associated with such a conviction can lead to strained family dynamics and social isolation.
  • Mitigating the Impact: To mitigate these impacts, consider engaging in rehabilitation programs and community service. Demonstrating a commitment to change and responsibility can help in both legal proceedings and personal rehabilitation.

The Role of Expert Witnesses in Felony DUI Cases

Expert witnesses play a crucial role in the defense against felony DUI charges:

  • Forensic Toxicologists: They can provide critical insights into the accuracy of BAC tests. Their expertise can help in challenging the prosecution’s evidence regarding your intoxication level.
  • Accident Reconstruction Specialists: If the DUI charge involves an accident, these experts can help in reconstructing the incident to provide a clearer picture of what happened and possibly counter the argument that your alleged intoxication was the primary cause.
  • Medical Experts: They can testify about any medical conditions you may have that could have influenced the DUI test results or your driving ability at the time of the incident.

Employing expert witnesses can strengthen your defense by providing specialized knowledge and challenging the prosecution’s narrative.

Our Orlando Defense Against Felony DUI Charges Law Firm Is Here to Help

The legal team at Katz & Phillips, P.A. understands the seriousness of the charges you are facing and we are dedicated to resolving your case successfully.  Our attorneys have years of experience in criminal law and are more than capable of providing you with the aggressive, unrelenting defense that you deserve.  Let us use our knowledge, skills, and resources to work on getting your charges reduced or dismissed!

Your future is too important – do not head to court unprotected and without the guidance of a skilled attorney. If you are facing felony DUI charges, contact an Orlando DUI attorney at Katz & Phillips, P.A. today!