Can you give me an overview of the NY DWI Law?
by Seth Azria on 12/31/2015
New York DWI Law: Overview
The “DWI Law” in New York is contained in Vehicle and Traffic section 1192 and is titled “Operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol or drugs”. The law includes 6 separate offenses; here we will cover 3 of the most frequently charged offenses; misdemeanor Driving While Intoxicated (DWI), misdemeanor Aggravated Driving While Intoxicated (Agg. DWI), and the non-criminal charge of Driving While Ability Impaired (DWAI).
Each DWI charge is a separate offense and a driver may be facing compounding penalties and conviction history. This underscores the importance of hiring a competent and experienced attorney to represent you. At Azria & Bruffett our attorneys concentrate on mastering the DWI laws in order to best serve you.
Driving While Intoxicated (DWI)
VTL 1192.3 “Common Law”
As explained earlier, a DWI results from a reasonable cause to believe that someone has operated a motor vehicle while in an intoxicated condition on a public roadway. Under the common law charge the arresting officer has likely drawn the decision to arrest based upon his observations. For example, how the vehicle was being operated, the appearance of the driver, whether any admissions were made, and the results of the standardized field sobriety tests. The blood alcohol content of the driver is not an element of this offense and need not be proven.
Driving While Intoxicated, Per Se (DWI Per Se)
VTL 1192.2, BAC greater than.08%
DWI Per Se consists of reasonable cause to believe that someone was operating a motor vehicle upon a public roadway while having a blood alcohol content equal to or greater than .08%. It is not an element that the driver actually be intoxicated or that their driving was affected by alcohol consumption.
Aggravated Driving While Intoxicated, Per Se (Agg DWI Per Se)
VTL 1192.2a; BAC greater than .18%
Aggravated DWI Per Se consists of the same elements of “DWI Per Se”, however the operator’s blood alcohol content is equal to or greater than .18%.
Driving While Ability Impaired (DWAI)
DWAI is a non-criminal violation. In many cases, a DWI charge being reduced to a DWAI plea can result in lower fines, shorter license suspensions, reduced exposure to incarceration or probation, and avoid the ignition interlock device and criminal record.
Azria & Bruffett continually works to ensure favorable outcomes for our clients. We invite you to contact us now so that we can begin to assist you.