Tampa DUI Lawyers
Arrested for drunk driving in Tampa, Florida?
If you have been criminally charged with driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, it is extremely important that you do not hesitate to get the involvement of an experienced lawyer who you can trust to protect your legal rights. At Thomas & Paulk, we have more than two decades of combined legal experience and are prepared to go the distance in helping to create a comprehensive defense crafted with the protection of your freedom in mind.
You can be confident knowing that, should you choose to work with our Tampa DUI attorneys, you will be protected by a firm who has the experience, dedication and expertise necessary to helping you fight against the charges you are facing. From helping with alcohol related arrests after a Tampa Bay Bucs game to arrests during the holidays, you can trust that we will go above and beyond as we work to protect your rights and avoid conviction.
Experience Makes all the Difference
When you are dealing with a DUI arrest, you need to be confident that you have an experienced Tampa DUI lawyer on your side – someone who has successfully handled these cases before, not just talked about them. This is exactly what you will receive should you choose to work with our legal team at Thomas & Paulk. Over the years, we have successfully been able to help countless clients who had been charged for allegedly drinking and driving. Take, for example, a case we handled involving a resident of Brandon, FL. He had been leaving the Green Iguana Bar & Grill when he was pulled over during a routine traffic stop. According to the testimony of the arresting officer, our client supposedly failed all administered field sobriety stops and blew a 0.123 and 0.125 during the breath test.
Despite this daunting evidence, our firm was not afraid to take on the case. Instead we began to meticulously review all maintenance records on the Intoxilyzer 8000 used to administer the breath test – something we routinely do for all of the cases that we take on. During this, we discovered that the last inspection of the machine had not complied with Florida Department of Law Enforcement Alcohol Testing Program.
By using this as a cornerstone of our argument, we were able to get the enhanced charges of a DUI reduced to reckless driving, allowing our client to walk away with significantly reduced penalties. This is the kind of high-quality and thorough work you can expect when working with our firm. Instead of making empty promises, we buckle down and invest the necessary time and energy into providing our clients with effective defense strategies. It is this kind of representation that has resulted in clients stating that our firm is "worth every penny." Still not convinced? To learn more about the previous cases handled by our firm and the people we have helped, just visit our case results today.
Understanding Florida DUI Laws
According to §316.193 of the Florida Statutes, it is considered a criminal offense to drive a vehicle while under the influence of alcohol, chemical substances or controlled substances. This level of impairment can be determined through several methods, but most often is proven through breath tests and blood tests; if the subject test results show a blood alcohol level (BAL) over the legal limit of 0.08 percent, they can be legally considered impaired and arrested for a driving under the influence.
Per the law, a first drunk driving conviction can bring penalties such as:
- Fine Schedule – Between $500 and $1000. If the BAL was over 0.15, between $1000 and $2000.
- Community Service – Mandatory 50 hours of community service or $10 fine per hour.
- Probation – Term of up to one year.
- Imprisonment – Up to six months of incarceration. If BAL was over 0.15, up to nine months.
- Vehicle Impoundment – 10 days, unless defendant has no other source of transportation.
- Driver License Revocation – Between 180 days and a year.
Upon an arrest for drunken or impaired driving, you will likely be taken and held in jail until you meet certain conditions for your release. Per 316.183(9), if you have been arrested for drunk driving and placed in jail, to be released it will need to be proven that you are no longer impaired by drugs and / or alcohol, that you have a BAL under 0.05 percent and that it has been over eight hours since the moment you were arrested.
Challenging the Evidence of BAC Testing
After an arrest, it is vitally important that you get in contact with an attorney as soon as you can. Being arrested does not mean that you will be convicted and our firm can help fight against this possibility with detail-oriented, tireless work ethic. We know the best ways in which to defend your legal rights and will be able to go over your case with a fine tooth comb in an effort to protect your future. For example, if you were pulled over in a traffic stop under the suspicion of drunk driving, it is likely that you will be asked to submit to certain types of blood alcohol content testing, such as the breath test, blood test and field sobriety tests.
We can help to challenge the evidence presented by the results of these tests, looking for any and all faults, so that we can better build a case to defend you. We recognize that while these tests can be difficult to combat, they are not impossible. We know the common faults with blood testing and are able to challenge the breath test. Beyond this, when building any defense, we will take a comprehensive approach and look at every angle. We know the correct questions to ask and will be able to look for things such as whether you experienced a search / seizure violation or if you were pulled over without probable cause. We know your rights and will go above and beyond to ensure that these are protected to the full extent of the law.
About Field Sobriety Tests
Established by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), field sobriety tests include three separate tests that are used in conjunction to determine the level of impairment of any given subject. These tests, including the Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus (HGN), the Walk and Turn (WAT) and One Leg Stand (OLS), have been found to be accurate in 91 percent of all cases when used together. This, however, does not mean that they cannot be combated. For example, extenuating medical conditions can make even a sober person appear to have "failed" these subjective tests. Therefore, with the proper assistance of an experienced attorney, you may be able to fight to prove your innocence.
DUI Lawyers Focusing on Effective Defense
At Thomas & Paulk, we know the consequences of driving under the influence, and we are prepared to help you fight to protect your freedom. No matter whether you have been arrested for boating under the influence on the many waterways of the Sunshine State or if you are concerned about an upcoming DHSMV hearing addressing a driver's license revocation, you can trust in our ability to step up and fight for you. We know the importance of DUI defense and can help you learn why you really need an attorney.
Your freedom is far too important to leave up to the whims of chance – you need an aggressive advocate in your corner. This is exactly what you will receive should you choose to work with our firm. As one of the premier criminal defense firms in the area, we have experience in handling cases that range from driving while impaired by drugs to felony cases, multiple offenses and even underage arrests. No matter the extenuating factors of your case, you can trust that we have the experience necessary to investigate your case and come up with a strategy best suited for you.
Contact an Experienced DUI Attorney in Tampa Today
Our legal team has successfully gained a local and national reputation for our knowledge of this area of the law and our work in protecting the rights of the accused. In fact, we have even been featured on media outlets, such as Fox 13 and ABC News in regards to the No Refusal Program. When your future is on the line, you simply cannot afford to work with an inexperienced lawyer. We know the penalties that you could potentially face, such as mandatory attendance at DUI school, large fines and court fees, as well as increased insurance costs, and will do everything that we can to help you avoid this possibility. You can trust knowing that should you choose to work with our firm that we will be completely committed to helping you prove your innocence and provide comprehensive defense against the case presented by the prosecutor. So don't waste a moment. With this much at stake, you don't have a moment to lose – call us today.
To learn more, do not hesitate to contact a Tampa DUI attorney by calling us at 813-321-7323.