Maryland DUI Second Offense
If you are one of the many Maryland residents with a driving under the influence (DUI) charge on his or her criminal record, you may think that being arrested a second time is not that big of a deal—after all, you made it through the last ordeal and know just what to expect, right? Think again. Under state law, a Maryland DUI second offense carries much harsher penalties than a first-time conviction.
To be charged with a subsequent DUI, your prior conviction must have occurred within the past five years. Depending on the nature of both your past and current offenses, the judge may order you to pay a $2,000 fine and/or spend up to two years behind bars. In some cases, your driving privileges could even be permanently revoked.
Additional penalties may also be applied if you were arrested while transporting a minor (a person under 16). Likewise, if you were carrying an underage passenger at the time of your first arrest, the judge is less likely to give you leniency the second time around.
Along with criminal penalties, a second DUI may lead to many consequences that you did not encounter after your first conviction. For example, your history of driving under the influence may threaten countless job opportunities and/or affect your eligibility for certain housing and educational programs in the future.
What’s more, even if your DUI does not affect your personal life, you can expect to pay more for auto, life, and health insurance long after your arrest. In fact, it’s not uncommon for insurers to double or triple a person’s rates once he or she has been found guilty of one DUI—let alone two!
In light of all the penalties a repeat offender faces, it’s easy to see why so many choose to obtain legal help after being arrested for a second DUI. In many cases, a skilled legal representative can create a strong argument for your defense—often resulting in the charges against you being reduced or dismissed in court.
If you are one of the many motorists who have been convicted of a drunk driving charge in the past, you should contact an experienced DUI defense attorney immediately if you are arrested for the offense in the future.