In most cases, a DUI in Georgia is charged as a misdemeanor. However, depending on the situation, a DUI charge in Georgia may be elevated to a felony. Below is an overview of how a DUI becomes a felony in Georgia. If you are facing a DUI charge in Georgia, please contact a Georgia DUI attorney for assistance.
The Ways in Which a DUI Becomes a Felony
In Georgia, a DUI charge can result in a felony when:
The driver causes serious injury or death – If a driver who is under the influence of alcohol causes a crash that results in death or serious injury, he or she will likely be charged with a felony. In Georgia, the penalties for seriously injuring or killing someone while behind the wheel are severe. In fact, anyone who commits homicide by vehicle faces a minimum of two years in prison if convicted.
The driver is a high-risk operator – Certain people who drive for a living are held to a higher standard of safety than other drivers due to the nature of their jobs. For example, school bus drivers are held to a high safety standard because they transport students on a regular basis. In Georgia, a school bus driver who is convicted of DUI faces up to five years in prison.
The driver has multiple offenses – In Georgia, the penalties associated with a DUI charge increase when a driver has previous DUI convictions. A third DUI in 10 years is charged as an aggravated misdemeanor, and a fourth DUI in the same period is charged as a felony if each offense occurred after July 1, 2008.
What are the Penalties for a Felony DUI in Georgia?
A felony DUI conviction in Georgia has serious consequences, including years in prison, hefty fines, license revocation, the installation of an ignition interlock system on one’s vehicle, community service, and mandatory alcohol treatment classes. In addition, a criminal record can seriously affect a person’s ability to find work, obtain suitable housing, and even secure certain loans. In other words, a felony DUI conviction can be a life-changing event. Therefore, if you are facing a felony DUI charge in Georgia, you should contact a Georgia DUI attorney as soon as possible for assistance.
Contact a Georgia DUI Attorney
As you can see, a DUI charge in Georgia is no laughing matter. Therefore, if you are facing a DUI charge in Georgia, you need the assistance of an experienced Georgia DUI attorney. At Carter Pilgrim Stroud, our talented DUI attorneys have a long track record of DUI defense success. We’ve built a strong reputation for courtroom success and the ability to obtain favorable plea bargains and dismissals. Therefore, if you’ve been charged with DUI in Georgia, please contact us for a consultation as soon as possible.