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Waukesha County criminal defense lawyerEvery state in the country has an implied consent law. Basically, this law means that by accepting the privilege drive a vehicle, a licensed driver automatically consents to chemical or blood testing if a police officer has probable cause to believe that driver is under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Wisconsin’s implied consent law goes a step further. The state’s implied consent law contains a provision that stipulates that an incapacitated driver is “presumed not to have withdrawn” their consent of testing, even if they are not conscious.

This provision meant that police could conduct blood testing on a driver who was totally unconscious and unaware of what the police were doing. However, this will no longer be the case as the Wisconsin Supreme Court recently ruled that that provision is unconstitutional and violates the incapacitated driver’s Fourth Amendment protecting against unconstitutional search and seizure.

The Case

The unanimous decision was made by the justices in the case of State v. Prado. In December 2014, the defendant was severely injured in a car crash that killed the other driver. At the hospital, a police officer read the defendant, who was unconscious and intubated, the informing the accused script contained in the state’s implied consent law. Since she was unconscious, she did not answer the officer, however, because he thought he was within his rights under the law, he had a nurse obtain a blood sample without obtaining a warrant to do so first.

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Waukesha County Attorneys for underage OWI

We can all remember the times when we were teenagers. Finally being able to drive meant finally being able to have more independence from your parents, but it also meant taking on more responsibility than ever before. Operating a vehicle while you are under the influence (OWI) of drugs or alcohol is not only highly irresponsible, but it is also highly illegal. In Wisconsin, underage offenders who are caught driving while they are intoxicated face a variety of penalties that could potentially become serious. Being charged with a crime does not necessarily mean you will be convicted of one, but a Wisconsin criminal defense lawyer can help make sure you are not.

Wisconsin’s “Not a Drop” Law

One of the most important pieces of evidence in any OWI case is the driver’s BAC or blood-alcohol concentration. For drivers who are over the age of 21, the legal BAC limit is 0.08. In most states, the legal BAC limit for drivers under the age of 21 is set at a much lower threshold and Wisconsin is no exception. Wisconsin’s underage OWI law, also known as their “Not a Drop” law, states that the legal BAC limit for those under the age of 21 is 0.00, or no amount of alcohol. 

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Waukesha County criminal defense attorney OWI

In most states, driving or operating a vehicle while under the influence of drugs or alcohol is strictly forbidden and results in a criminal charge. Wisconsin, however, is unique in the fact that it is the only state to still classify a first-offense OWI as a driving offense, rather than a criminal offense. Instead of jail time as a punishment, a first-time OWI offender typically only faces around $735 in fines, a six- to nine-month driver’s license revocation, and a potential requirement for an ignition interlock device (IID) on their vehicles. However, charges can escalate quickly in OWI cases. Under certain circumstances, operating a vehicle while intoxicated (OWI) can result in felony charges.

Fourth or Greater OWI Offense

If the OWI offense is your fourth or greater OWI offense, it will automatically be charged as a felony offense. A fourth OWI is charged as a Class H felony, which carries a possible jail sentence of 60 days to six years, a two- to three-year driver’s license revocation, and an IID requirement for vehicles. Charges for further offenses can range from Class G felonies to Class E felonies, for 10th or greater offenses.

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Muskego drivers license reinstatement attorney

Like every other state in the country, there are multiple ways that you can be stripped of your driving privileges in Wisconsin. Major driving offenses that endanger the lives of others such as excessive speeding or reckless driving can end up costing you your driving privileges in some situations. However, the most common driving offense that leads to driver’s license suspensions and revocations is operating a vehicle while under the influence of alcohol or drugs. If your driver’s license has been suspended or revoked, you will have to take certain steps to reinstate it. A Wisconsin driver’s license reinstatement lawyer can help you make sure you are taking the proper steps to get yourself back on the road.

Checking Your Eligibility for Reinstatement

Checking your eligibility for reinstatement is the first step in the reinstatement process. The length of time between your revocation or suspension and when you become eligible to have your license reinstated largely depends on the offense you were charged with that triggered the suspension or revocation. The number of times you have committed that offense or similar offenses will also affect how long it will take for you to become eligible for reinstatement.

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Oconomowoc criminal defense attorney OWI

With temperatures dropping and snow beginning to fall, people across the country are getting their families and homes ready for the upcoming winter holidays. For many people, celebrating holidays often means going to social events where alcohol is present, but this can spell trouble for some. Drinking and driving is extremely dangerous and can even cause harm or death to others if you do not drink responsibly. This is why the state of Wisconsin, as well as all of the other 49 states,  have laws against consuming alcohol and then operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated (OWI). The holiday season is the most stressful time of year to be dealing with a drunk driving charge, so it is important that you avoid an arrest and criminal charge if you have been pulled over for OWI. 

Tips to Avoid an OWI Conviction in Wisconsin

Many people travel by car to visit family and friends over the Christmas holiday season and combined with increased alcohol use, this can (and has been shown to) produce a deadly situation. According to the National Safety Council (NSC), only about 29 percent of all traffic deaths typically involve alcohol, but during the Christmas Day period, approximately 37 percent of all traffic deaths can be attributed to alcohol involvement. When a death is involved in an OWI charge, consequences can become extremely serious, so avoiding an arrest is the best strategy to use. Here are a few tips if you are faced with this type of situation: 

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