Have You Been Arrested for Your 4th Atlanta DUI?
Unfortunately, a 4th DUI in Georgia is a game changer for the worse. It is not treated like any of the previous three DUIs. Effective as of 2008, a fourth DUI within a 10 year period is a felony. A felony is a far more serious crime than a misdemeanor. With a misdemeanor, you may have to deal with a criminal record, but it won't impact your life like a felony will. Felons are not able to even own guns. Felons also have have limited voting rights, and cannot even serve on a jury. Even after serving the required jail time for a fourth DUI, it will be hard to get your life back to normal, and can take half a decade before things go back to the way they were.
Fourth DUI Consequences in Atlanta
If you don't fight a 4th DUI charge, and get convicted, the unfortunate fact is is that there is no way of getting around serving real jail time. Misdemeanors generally carry a maximum of a year in prison, but felonies are not limited by time. A felony conviction for a DUI has a minimum of a 1 year prison sentence, and a maximum of 5 years! The judge can suspend the sentence, but prison cannot be suspended to less than 90 days, almost a quarter of a year.
Other penalties include a minimum of 60 days of community service. Similar to a 3rd DUI, a defendant will have to complete a DUI Alcohol or Drug Use Risk Reduction Program again, and go through a clinical evaluation. If the evaluator determines you need a treatment program, you'll have to complete that as well. You'll also be on probation for up to 5 years.
Loss of your license is another major setback. If you are convicted for a 4th DUI within a ten year period, your license will be revoked by the state. There will be no driving permission for at least two years, even to work or school. Only after 2 years will you be able to try and get a limited driving privileges. This is only after completing DUI school and installing an ignition interlock device. Still, it is up to the court to decide whether to let you have any driving permit for 5 years.
The High Costs of a Felony Conviction
It can be hard for us to calculate just how much is at stake for DUI penalties, unless we put it in a dollar amount. In addition to the obvious fines, by spending time in jail, in DUI school, community service, court, alcohol treatment programs, and getting rides or spending additional time on public transportation, we lose out on time where we could be working and earning money.
The loss of time completing these and other required penalties can really add up to a lot of money. For example, 60 days of community service totals 480 hours. You will not be paid for that time. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average hourly wage in the Atlanta Metro Area is about $23.21 per hour. By requiring 480 hours of community service, you may be effectively losing more than $11,000! And that's just for the community service requirement. In the end, a felony conviction could cost your tens of thousands of dollars, as well as threaten your job, your livelihood, and family life.
Georgia Fourth DUI Lawyer
An arrest does not have to lead to a conviction. There are defenses to DUI charges, even for multiple or felony DUIs. You don't have to plead guilty just because you got arrested after a 4th DUI. A felony isn't anything to mess around with. We are a Georgia DUI Defense Law Firm with years of experience defending clients charged with multiple DUI charges, and we understand how serious it can be. We have successfully represented thousands of drivers charged with a DUI to get their charges dismissed or reduced. We will use put extensive training, courtroom experience, and understanding of how the police and prosecutors to work for you. Call us anytime, day or night, because you need someone on your side to fight for your rights.