Should I Accept a Plea Bargain After a DUI Arrest?

If you were recently arrested for drunk driving in South Carolina, you may be wondering what steps you can take to maximize your chances of a successful outcome. While accepting a plea bargain is one way to ensure that you can minimize the legal ramifications of a DUI conviction, it is important to understand that not all deals are as good as they may seem. In many cases, the prosecution will offer you the chance to plead guilty to the "lesser offense" of driving with an unlawful alcohol concentration (DUAC) in exchange for the dismissal of your driving under the influence (DUI) charges. They will tell you that this offense won't show up on your criminal record, which can be true, but what they will neglect to tell you is that the penalties for DUAC are virtually the same as DUI. In fact, it is true that:

  • Both DUAC and DUI are ineligible for expungement
  • The jail time imposed on DUAC and DUI offenders is the same
  • DUAC and DUI will have the same impact on your criminal record
  • You will be required to carry SR-22 insurance for DUAC and DUI
  • The fines for DUAC and DUI are the same

Despite the fact that these charges are virtually the same, South Carolina prosecutors have continued to mislead unsuspecting defendants by offering them a "good deal." That being said, it is highly recommended that you discuss your case with the Lexington criminal defense attorney at the Law Office of James R. Snell, Jr., LLC before you accept any sort of plea agreement—especially if you are unsure of what it entails. In some cases, you may be better off fighting the DUI charge at trial, as you may ultimately be able to avoid any sort of legal ramifications if you win. In other cases, your Lexington DUI lawyer may advise you to plead guilty to a lesser offense. It all depends on the unique circumstances of your case, so we encourage you to speak with a member of our legal team today.

As members of the South Carolina Association for Justice and the American Association for Justice, our experienced criminal defense lawyers will work tirelessly to defend your rights. For this reason, you should not hesitate to find out how we can assist you in fighting your DUI charges. When you contact our office today at (888) 301-6004, your initial consultation is free. We have live operators standing by, waiting for your call, so you would have nothing to lose by taking the first step today. If you would prefer to reach us online, you can also fill out a free case evaluation form with some basic information about your charges.

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