You know that drinking and driving is illegal but did you know that it is also illegal to boat while under the influence? We find that many people know that it is frowned upon but don’t realize how serious the consequences can be if they are caught doing it. Keep reading to discover the potential consequences for boating under the influence then contact Chambers Law Firm at 855-397-0210 for a free legal consultation with a criminal defense attorney.
BUIs Are a Wobbler Offense
A wobbler offense is one that can be charged as a felony or misdemeanor. BUI is a wobbler. Generally speaking, a felony charge is much more serious can lead to more significant consequences. Felony charge are generally only brought if the person who was operating while intoxicated did something that resulted in the death or serious injury of another person.
You Could End Up in Jail or Prison
For a conviction of misdemeanor BUI, you could end up spending a year in jail – though it is more common for lesser sentences to be doled out. In fact, it is rare for someone to serve more than 90 days in jail on a misdemeanor BUI charge. On the other hand, a felony conviction could lead to years in prison, depending on the situation.
You Could Pay Up to $25,000 in Fines
Fines for misdemeanor cases do not generally exceed $1,000. Felony cases can result in fines of as much $25,000. Note that these fines can be imposed in addition to jail time and other penalties – not instead of other penalties.
You Could Be Put on Probation
While most people bristle at the sound of “probation” the truth is that it may be the best option if you were caught red-handed. Probation allows you to stay out of jail in exchange for complying with various requirements. This could include alcohol or drug tests, staying out of jail, providing community service, and reporting to a probation officer. A typical probation term is 12 months. If you do not follow through on all requirements, you could end up in jail or prison.
Your Boating Privileges Will Be Suspended
If you are convicted of boating under the influence then you can count on your boating privileges being suspended. At a minimum, you will lose the right to boat for at least 30 days but it is common for the suspension to last 90 days or more.
If you have been accused of or caught boating under the influence then we encourage you to contact Chambers Law Firm at 855-397-0210 for your free legal consultation. We can consider your case and offer our best advice on how you can proceed.