Do you have a driving under the influence conviction on your record? Did a recent traffic stop result in you facing another DUI charge? If so, the state of Maryland may consider you a repeat offender, which means the consequences if prosecuting attorneys achieve a conviction this time around can be far more severe than what you experienced last time.
According to state law, anyone who has more than one DUI put on his or her record in a 5-year period is by definition a repeat offender. The consequences for this type of offense include an automatic one-year license suspension followed by the required installation of an ignition interlock device. This device has to remain in one's vehicle for at least a full year.
After receiving a license suspension notice
If you receive a license suspension notice in the mail, you must surrender your license to a local Motor Vehicle Administration office. If, for some reason, you cannot find or are not in possession of your license, you still have to go to an MVA office and submit a written statement about what happened to it for the state to have on record. You only have 15 days to do this. Failing to do this on time may extend the length of time your license remains suspended.
When your suspension is almost up
Near the end of your license suspension period, the state will send you information about the ignition interlock device program. The state will require you to pay an approved vendor to have one installed in your vehicle and any other vehicles you may drive over the next year. You are also responsible for maintaining the device. You will also have to pay the following fees:
- Device use fee
- Fee to place the restriction on your driver's license
- Fee to remove the restriction from your driver's license
If you cannot afford to pay for the device and all the necessary fees, you can always see if you qualify for financial hardship in order to receive assistance with the cost of installing and maintaining the ignition interlock device. It is necessary to provide proof that the expense will be a burden to you and your family.
Is it possible to fight a repeat DUI charge?
Yes, anything is possible. The success of doing so really depends on a number of factors and the facts of your case. With the assistance of legal counsel, you can work to fight repeat DUI charges or at least seek to minimize the consequences associated with a conviction.