Understanding Your Iowa DUI Case
Being convicted of DUI (Driving Under the Influence) or other similar charges can dramatically affect an individual’s future. This is why, right after being arrested, it is important to begin preparing your case in order to minimize the impact this type of conviction can have on your personal and financial life. DUI arrests and convictions in Des Moines, Cedar Rapids, Davenport, Sioux City, and anywhere in Iowa carry the same consequences, including jail time, hefty fines, and lengthy license suspensions.
Keeping these penalties in mind, it is easy to see the importance of having your case evaluated by a DUI attorney who is well versed in the DUI laws specific to Iowa. Since plea bargaining is allowed on DUI charges in Iowa, your attorney may wish to collect evidence on the case in order to work that angle and, if he or she cannot have the case dismissed, he or she may be able to arrange a plea bargain. This can result in a lesser charge, such as “wet reckless,” a reckless driving charge where alcohol is indicated.
It is Important to Know Your Rights
The team at DUIRights.com will be able to evaluate a DUI case and let the client know if his or her rights have been violated in any way. What many people do not know is that in many DUI arrests, the individuals rights were violated in some way. Knowing the details of what happened during your DUI traffic stop and arrest is important information for the DUIRights.com team and your attorney so he or she can build a better defense case with the hope of having the case dismissed or charges reduced.
If you are unsure of your DUI rights, you can ask yourself these questions:
- Why did the officer make the traffic stop? Did I violate any driving laws?
- Was I driving the vehicle when the traffic stop occurred?
- How long after my last drink did I receive a Breathalyzer test?
- Were the arresting officer’s observations of my sobriety consistent with other witnesses?
- Did the officer administer any field sobriety tests during the stop? How were they administered?
- Did the officer inform me of the rights? Were the Miranda Rights recited to me?
Reviewing these questions with your attorney will be able to identify if any of your rights were violated, such as not having been read your Miranda Rights when being arrested. These rights violations can help the lawyer to build a strong defense against the prosecutor when the case goes to court.
Across the state of Iowa police have been using stronger tactics to increase OWI arrests. If you are currently facing this unpleasant situation then start by gaining confidence knowing you can beat Iowa DUI charges with the proper steps taken. Road blocks in Des Moines all the way to Iowa City and Cedar Rapids have caused great concern for anyone who simply has had one drink over the Iowa state limit. This sometimes can be an unfair procedure in which you are more than capable of driving but fail to comply with a man made testing process. Because of this judgment you are now faced with a possible permanent strike on your life.
Protect your rights and learn how to get your Iowa OWI charges dismissed. Get Started Now by filling out the Free DUI Arrest Evaluation form to get the answers you need.
DUI Laws in Iowa
In Iowa, a DUI is also called OWI, or operating while intoxicated. First time offenders, if given the minimum penalties and fines, find that these laws are probably a bit more lenient that most parts of the country. However, maximum fines and penalties as well as repeat offenders will see much more expensive fines as well as significantly longer jail sentences and suspensions.
Consequences for Refusing to Take Chemical Tests in Iowa
Iowa is an implied consent state, so there are significant fines and penalties for refusing to take the mandated chemical tests. Unlike most states, Iowa actually revokes your license instead of just suspending it:
- First offense – one-year license revocation
- Second offense – two-year license revocation
- Third offense – two-year license revocation
BAC Levels in Iowa
Iowa BAC levels are consistent with most other levels in the United States.
- Drivers that are 21 years or older, .08 percent
- Drivers under the age of 21, .02 percent
- Commercial drivers, .04 percent
Is There Mandatory Jail Time Required for a DUI or OWI in Iowa?
In Iowa, if you are arrested and charged for a DUI or OWI, you will go to jail:
- First time offenders – sentences ranging from 48 hours to one year
- Second time offenders – sentences ranging from seven days to two years
- Third time offenders – sentences ranging from 30 days to five years
Iowa does have a lookback period of 12 years for the purposes of sentencing. This is at least two years longer than most states in the country (with the obvious exception of states offering no lookback period).
Monetary Fines and Penalties for DUI or OWI in Iowa
Maximum fines for all violations are among the highest in the country:
- First offense – fines ranging from $625 to $1,200
- Second offense – fines ranging from $1,875 to $6,250
- Third offense – fines ranging from $3,125 to$9,375
License Suspension for DUI or OWI in Iowa
In many states, first time offenders face a one-year suspension. This penalty is significantly less in Iowa, but repeat offenders face some very long suspensions:
- First offense – 180 day suspension
- Second offense – mandatory two-year suspension
- Third offense – mandatory six-year suspension
IID installation is mandatory in Iowa for first time offender with a BAC over .10 percent and all repeat offenders.
Finding a DUI or OWI Attorney in Iowa
Today, more than ever before, being arrested for DUI or OWI results in serious consequences. It goes much further than the fines and penalties listed above, as it will end up on your record and could cost you current or future employment. Even if the evidence seems stacked against you, a good attorney may be able to have the charges dismissed or plead the case out to a lesser charge of wet reckless. If you are arrested and charged with a DUI or OWI in Iowa, you can submit your case for a free evaluation and find a sponsoring licensed, local attorney from DUIRights.com.