When you face charges for driving under the influence, you may have more than just a DUI or DWI charge. It is important to understand that there are different areas of law that may apply in your case, and they act completely independently of each other.
The Missouri Department of Revenue explains you will have penalties under criminal and administrative law.
Your criminal charges may be what you think about right away upon a DUI arrest. Criminal charges go through the criminal justice system. They could result in fines and jail or prison time. The court also has the power to restrict your driving privileges and apply points to your driving record. You will go before the court when dealing with criminal charges, and you may also have to stay in jail until you see the judge.
Administrative consequences are separate from the criminal charges. They are found within the laws pertaining to DUIs. An administrative consequence will apply if you refuse to take a breath test to assess your blood alcohol content level. It also applies if your BAC is over a certain level. This occurs automatically and has no relation to your criminal charges. The penalty is a loss of your driver’s license. It will happen even if you win your case or do not have charges against you.
It is important to be aware of the potential issues that can come from a DUI. You want to make sure you understand all criminal and administrative penalties to avoid having further issues, such as driving under a suspended license.