If you’ve been pulled over by the police and suspected of drunk driving, you may be wondering which is worse – DUI or DWI? While some states use these terms interchangeably, others define them differently and assign varying penalties for each. Because of differences in legal limits and the criteria for driving while intoxicated, each state can have different penalties and consequences for both. In addition, police may also ask you to take a breathalyzer test, field sobriety tests, or blood tests.
In the vast majority of cases, a DWI charge is filed after a blood or urine sample is collected. Obtaining the test results is difficult, and it can’t be done during a traffic stop. In addition, drug use makes it difficult to estimate a percentage. However, the penalties for DWI can be worse than those of a DUI, particularly in states that charge both offenses. The difference between a DWI and a DUI charge depends on whether the person was using drugs or alcohol.
If the person’s blood alcohol concentration is 0.08 or more, he or she is charged with a DUI. However, in Missouri, the law doesn’t differentiate between DUI and DWI. DUI is the most serious of the two charges, but DUID can be just as severe. DUID is issued when a police officer believes that a person is under the influence of drugs. While a DWI is a criminal offense, a DUID is a misdemeanor.
For first-time DWI offenses, the consequences are usually milder than for DWAI. While fines are much higher than a DWAI offense, jail time may be less than a day. Even if a person doesn’t receive any jail time, the financial cost of a DWI conviction can be significant. As a result, it’s vital to seek the advice of an experienced defense lawyer to avoid a DWI conviction.
In California, the law says that a person who is under the age of 18 isn’t legally intoxicated. Regardless of age, BAC tests are mandatory for active drivers if the officer suspects impairment. If a driver tests above this legal limit, they’ll be charged with a DUI. In some states, the penalties can double or triple. If drugs are detected, a DWI charge may be issued.
While DUIs are the most serious of all drunk driving charges, DWIs have a lower sentence and less severe penalties. A driver’s blood alcohol content of 0.08 percent or less can still be charged with a DWI. But it’s important to remember that each of these convictions carry a range of punishments. A good defense attorney will fight the charges and protect your freedom. While there are many similarities between DUI and DWI, the penalties can differ significantly.