While each state enforces different penalties for driving under the influence, there is always a consequence for deciding to drive above the legal limit of alcohol or under the influence of another substance. Receiving a DUI is often a wake-up call for someone who regularly misuses alcohol or other substances, and while penalties vary, any infraction will carry a consequence that directly affects your ability to live or drive freely. If you are a Florida resident, it is important to learn the DUI laws of the Sunshine State.
What is a DUI?
A DUI is a legal infraction given to someone who is caught driving under the influence of either addictive or illegal substances. This includes someone who is driving above the legal limit of alcohol, has used more than the intended amount of a legal substance, or has participated in the use of illegal drugs. Penalties are enforced depending on the amount of the substance in your system and the number of infractions a person has had previously. There may be additional consequences if the result of you driving under the influence causes harm to another person.
Florida DUI Laws
If you are caught driving under the influence in the state of Florida, the penalties increase based on the number of infractions you have committed and the severity of the incident. If convicted for a DUI in Florida, the penalties can be legal, financial, or both. Consequences for a DUI conviction include:
- Fines paid to the state
- Serving time in prison
- Suspension or revocation of driver’s license
- Probationary periods
- Community service
- Felony charges
In addition to the above penalties, the courts may also require a person to enter treatment for substance use disorders. This requirement by the state often comes after severe or multiple infractions.
Substance Use Treatment for a DUI
Violating DUI laws I is often a wake-up call for someone who is regularly drinking or using other substances that influence their ability to safely drive a vehicle. Even though the state of Florida requires substance use treatment at a certain level of conviction, many people choose to seek treatment regardless. Often, a person who has been convicted for a DUI will begin to see a pattern emerge in their substance use that indicates a greater problem.
There can also be a level of emotional trauma surrounding a DUI depending on the circumstances. For example, if other people are injured or killed as a result of your driving under the influence, guilt often follows. You might replay the event in your mind and exhibit signs of trauma, such as anxiety about getting behind the wheel of a car again. Anxiety is our body’s natural way of signaling something is wrong or alarming, but too much of this feeling can be debilitating.
There is Hope at Augustine Recovery
If you’re concerned about the consequences of your drinking and substance use, Augustine Recovery can help. Our team can help you navigate the complexities of a substance use disorder, and get you the help you need before it becomes a legal issue. Treatment for a substance use disorder saves lives and reduces the lifelong financial burden of future criminal charges and lack of employment options due to a criminal record.
If you’ve recently received a DUI or are struggling with excessive substance use and would like to discuss treatment options, contact us today.