There are many different factors that can lead to a DUI charge being dismissed. Understanding the factors that can result in a dismissal will make you better prepared to handle your case in court and may ultimately help you avoid the consequences of being convicted with a DUI conviction on your record.
Here, we’ll take an in-depth look at how many DUI cases are dismissed in Ontario each year and what could result in your case being dismissed if it goes to trial or if it’s settled out of court.
What is A DUI?
In Ontario, a DUI is short for driving under the influence. This means that a person has been caught driving while impaired by drugs or alcohol. A first-offense DUI is a misdemeanor in Ontario, and it can come with some serious penalties.
However, many DUI cases are dismissed each year. The success rate of DUI cases in Canada is quite high- around 50%. Many people get their charges dropped because they were able to prove they weren’t impaired at the time of the arrest.
Others might have had an unfair arrest- such as an unreasonable police stop or questioning- and therefore don’t need to plead guilty on those grounds. It’s also possible to get your case dismissed if you were arrested outside of Canada because Canadian laws only apply within Canada’s borders.
If someone was falsely accused of a DUI because their car broke down, or they needed assistance after being involved in an accident, they may be able to have the charge dropped. Often times DUIs are not justified which would lead to dismissal even if there was evidence against them.
Also, since officers typically rely on testimony from one witness (rather than two) when deciding whether someone is too intoxicated to drive, these witnesses could easily lie about how much alcohol was consumed and/or how long ago it occurred.
One of the most common reasons for a DUI case to be dismissed is that the officer made an error during the investigation, such as getting bad blood test results or giving incorrect information about who was operating the vehicle. Lastly, sometimes witnesses forget what happened and forget to tell their side of the story leading to no conviction on either side.
Without this eyewitness testimony, there is nothing left to make the decision easy. On occasion, people take plea deals instead of going through trial just to avoid all of the stress and unknowns.
There are so many factors that can lead to a case being thrown out even without any evidence found against them, and that’s why you’ll want to hire a lawyer to help you through your case.
How Can I Get My DUI Charges Dropped?
In order to have your DUI charges dropped in Ontario, you must prove that the police officer had no grounds to pull you over, that you were not impaired while driving, or that the breathalyzer test was not accurate.
If you can prove any of these things, then your charges will likely be dropped. For example, if you showed up for court and your lawyer argued and was able to prove that there was no evidence proving that you were drunk at the time of your arrest, then the case would most likely be thrown out.
Your DUI attorney should argue that you did not violate the drinking and driving laws. To win a DUI trial, an attorney has to disprove all three conditions stated above.
The first two conditions are fairly easy to disprove because they require minimal proof, but the third condition is a little more difficult to argue against because it requires someone with expertise on alcohol levels in different body types. A lot of people think that they might be able to get their charges dropped by paying off their lawyer or finding some other way around paying their legal fees- this is not always true.
You should make sure that you hire a competent lawyer who will take on your case and represent you as best they can! It is worth noting that even if you have hired a good lawyer, they cannot guarantee anything. Anything could happen in court so it’s important to prepare yourself accordingly and research what your options are before going into the courtroom.
If you’re looking for a DUI lawyer to help you through your case, you’ll want to make sure they have a strong success rate of helping people through their cases. The right lawyer will tremendously increase your chances of winning.
Also, don’t forget to check the criminal defense lawyer’s qualifications! Remember: DUI cases vary depending on where you live so if you’re unsure about your rights in Ontario, talk to an experienced defense attorney near me.
How Long Will I Lose My License After A DUI In Ontario?
Losing your license is one of the many possible penalties for driving under the influence (DUI). Depending on the severity of your offense and whether it’s your first offense, you could lose your license for a set period of time. In Ontario, the consequences for DUI are governed by the Criminal Code and the Highway Traffic Act. If you’re convicted of DUI, you’ll face a mandatory minimum penalty of a $1,000 fine and a one-year license suspension.
You may also be required to install an ignition interlock device in your vehicle, which prevents you from driving if you have been drinking. If this is your second offense, you’ll face a mandatory minimum penalty of a $2,000 fine and a two-year license suspension.
Your license will remain suspended until you install an ignition interlock device, which prevents you from driving if you’ve been drinking. A third conviction will result in a mandatory minimum penalty of a $3,000 fine and a three-year license suspension.
The length of the suspension depends on how severe your offence was; more severe offences come with harsher penalties. For example, a fourth DUI conviction will result in a lifetime suspension of your driver’s licence.
However, there are ways to get back behind the wheel sooner than expected. For instance, if you enroll in an alcohol rehabilitation program before your court date and participate for at least 30 days, then your court can reduce the punishment that corresponds with each level of violation: fines would be reduced by up to 50% and the length of suspension would decrease by half as well.
You can find out more about these types of programs at the Ministry of Transportation website.
Drinking And Driving Statistics
In Ontario, there were 8,991 impaired driving incidents reported by police in 2016. This includes all types of impairment, such as alcohol, drugs, and medical conditions. Of these incidents, 4,669 resulted in charges being laid against the driver.
In 2017, there were 9,419 impaired driving incidents reported by police. This represents a 5% increase from the previous year. 4,764 of these incidents resulted in charges being laid against the driver.
This is a 3% increase from 2016. Drivers who are charged with impaired driving can face heavy fines and demerit points, not to mention possible jail time if convicted. For example, drivers who have been convicted of a second offence for drinking and driving may be sentenced to six months in jail.
As mentioned previously, for the first offence, drivers can be fined up to $1000 or sentenced to up to 6 months in jail if they refuse a breathalyzer test when pulled over by police. If found guilty of an alcohol-related offence for refusing a breathalyzer test when pulled over by police, this fine can be increased up to $5000 or imprisonment for up to 12 months.
A conviction for a refusal charge also carries 4 demerit points on your license and it will result in having your license suspended unless you apply for an ignition interlock device. If you’re lucky enough to get off without any consequences, then consider yourself one of the luckiest people alive.
Will Hiring A DUI Lawyer Help Me Avoid Consequences?
The main reason people hire an attorney is to help them avoid fines, penalties, and jail time. If you hire a DUI lawyer, he or she will take care of all of the paperwork for you and make sure that your case goes as smoothly as possible.
DUI lawyers are also able to help you get the best possible outcome for your case. This can include an acquittal or reduced charges. In some cases, they will be able to get the charges dropped entirely.
A good DUI lawyer will fight hard to protect your rights and keep you out of jail if at all possible. They have years of experience dealing with these types of cases, so they know what works best in courtrooms across the country
If you do choose to represent yourself against a DUI charge, it’s important that you know what legal options are available to you. If you’re not familiar with the field of DUI law, you’ll want to hire a reputable DUI lawyer.