In Massachusetts, your first two OUI charges are misdemeanors, provided that there are not enhancements such as having a child in the vehicle. If someone is injured as a result of your operating a motor vehicle under the influence of alcohol or other drugs, then your charges will likely be increased to a felony, and the potential penalties will immediately become much more severe. This includes other drivers, passengers to your car or other cars, pedestrians, bike riders, or anyone else involved in the accident. There are opportunities to have your charges considered as a misdemeanor, which is an important step in your defense. In addition to criminal charges, you may find that you are facing a series of civil charges that you may need to repay significant damages for.
Contact an OUI attorney in Massachusetts as soon as possible to discuss your options and how we can begin to work on your defense, towards a reasonable and fair outcome for your case. These charges are very serious and have major impacts on the way you live your life, meaning that it is absolutely essential that your case is handled the way it should be, and your charges are handled by a professional. Contact us today for a free consultation, where you will have the opportunity to speak with an experienced attorney about your overall situation, your criminal history, current charges, possible impacts to your life, and learn more about how we have handled past cases like your own, as well as how we would handle your case specifically.
It is important that you begin your relationship with your attorney with trust, and these initial calls are very important tools to ensure that you have chosen the right OUI lawyer for your case. We look forward to working with you, as we are confident that our experience will be a tremendous asset to your situation. Read more below about OUIs that cause injuries in Massachusetts.
What Happens If Someone Is Injured While a Driver Is Operating Under the Influence?
In the event that a person who is driving a vehicle under the influence of alcohol or other drugs and is found to have acted recklessly, the possibility of a misdemeanor OUI charge goes out the window. As soon as an injury is sustained, the charges are increased to felony charges, and the associated penalties increase with them. However, not all accidents are caused by the individual who is operating under the influence, although the blame is most-often placed on that individual because of their intoxication.
If you have been in an accident that someone else caused, which resulted in you being charged with felony OUI, it is absolutely essential that you partner with the right attorney for your case. There will be a variety of different issues that we will need to pull apart in order to present a clear case to the judge and jury and to ensure that the outcome of your case accurately represents the reality of the situation. This does not necessarily mean that your charges will be cleared if it is determined that the other driver caused the accident, but it can be a major victory, and a step towards getting your charges or penalties down to a reasonable and fair level. Our experience with OUI law in Massachusetts, as well as our years of experience representing clients for a variety of OUI-related charges, will prove to be indispensable for your defense and your likelihood of a favorable outcome.
Penalties For Injuries Involving OUI
The specific penalties for your case may vary since no two accidents are the same, but when someone is injured in an OUI-related accident, the penalties are a lot more serious than an OUI arrest for a traffic stop, or a situation where there are no injuries sustained. Here are some basic penalties:
Felony OUI Causing Serious Bodily Injury
- Fines of up to $5,000
- License suspension of two years
- Mandatory 6-month minimum and up to 10 years in state prison
Misdemeanor OUI Causing Bodily Injury
- Fines of up to $300
- License suspension of two years
- No mandatory minimum, but up to 30 months in jail
Difference Between Misdemeanor and Felony OUI Causing Injury
It is extremely important that you and your attorney immediately begin working towards misdemeanor charges, which will be considered if we prove that you were not acting with negligence or recklessness. As you can see by the difference in possible penalties, it is extremely important that we lay out the details of your accident and the circumstances that caused it clearly and compellingly to the judge and jury to ensure that your case is treated properly. Contact us today to get started.