Throndset Michenfelder Law Office LLC
Serving the best interests of Minnesotans in their time of need

Just Because You Were Arrested Doesn't Mean You Were Driving Drunk

If your driving is erratic or a police officer suspects you may be intoxicated, that officer has reason to pull you over. And because Minnesota is an implied consent state, that officer is also allowed to ask you to submit to a breath test to confirm his or her suspicions.

Just because you've been arrested for driving under the influence doesn't necessarily mean you are guilty of the crime. There may be multiple defenses to your case of which you are not aware that would prove your innocence. While an officer only needs probable cause to arrest you, a prosecutor must prove a case beyond a reasonable doubt to convict you.

At Throndset Michenfelder Law Office LLC, we look at the facts and surrounding circumstances of any criminal charge to determine the strengths and weaknesses of your case, and we will aggressively fight to protect your rights.

DUI Criminal Penalties In Minnesota

If you've been accused of driving under the influence (DUI), you are most likely facing criminal penalties and administrative penalties with the Minnesota Department of Public Safety (DPS) and the Office of Traffic Safety (OTS). DUI applies to all vehicles including cars, trucks, motorcycles, snowmobiles, ATVs, riding lawn mowers and golf carts.

The legal limit for DUI is 0.08 percent. In Minnesota, it is a misdemeanor if a person's alcohol concentration is .16 or less and/or a gross misdemeanor if a person's alcohol concentration is .16 or more. The penalties will always be harsher the higher your BAC if you have a child in the car, and/or if anyone was hurt.

If you refuse to take a BAC test, you may be charged with a gross misdemeanor and face up to one year in jail and/or a $1,000 fine.

Administrative Penalties

The Minnesota DPS administrative penalties you may face for a first offense will depend on your BAC and the circumstances of a violation. These penalties can be imposed regardless of the outcome of any criminal or court findings.

For a BAC of under 0.16 percent, you may face one year of driver's license suspension or one year of restricted driving with an ignition interlock system.

For a BAC of 0.16 percent or more, you may face a driver's license suspension of up to two years or an ignition interlock requirement for up to two years.

Petition For License Reinstatement

Under certain circumstances after your license has been suspended or revoked, you may be able to petition the court to have your driver's license reinstated. Within 15 days of receiving notice of your petition, the district court for the county in which you filed your petition must schedule a hearing. At this hearing, you may submit evidence, such as Alco Sensor readings, that supports your request to get your driving privileges back.

The Importance Of Legal Counsel

Laws are subject to change in Minnesota, which only makes their already complicated state even more intimidating. Following a police stop or a DUI arrest, your first step should be to retain the services of a qualified defense attorney. With their help, you will be able to better understand the laws at work in your case and any pending legislation that could affect it down the road.

Contact Our Firm

To schedule a free initial consultation with a lawyer from Throndset Michenfelder Law Office LLC, contact either our St. Michael office or our office in Maple Grove. Call 763-515-4148 or send us an email to set up an appointment. Weekend appointments are available.

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