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NYC DUI Lawyers | NYC DWI Lawyers

March 21, 2024

Those charged with a driving under the influence (DUI) offense in New York should take it seriously. Even if this is an individual’s first criminal offense, he or she is still at risk of facing serious consequences that include costly fines, a suspended driver’s license, and possibly a prison sentence. The best way to ensure that your rights are protected is to contact a New York criminal defense attorney who has experience with DUI cases.

Factors That Can Increase a DUI Sentence
Even if an individual has a clean criminal record prior to the DUI arrest, there are many factors that can aggravate the situation. When these factors are seen at an arrest, it can result in higher fines, incarceration, and harsher penalties.

What Factors are Considered to be Aggravated in a DUI Arrest?
There are many factors that can lead to increased consequences, such as if an individual was speeding, driving while his or her license was suspended, drives recklessly, or fails to stop the vehicle when signaled by a police officer.

In addition, when there are minors in the vehicle with the driver whom was intoxicated, or when there is an open container of alcohol found in the vehicle at the time of the arrest, it will further enhance the charges and the consequences will be increased.

Those With Higher Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) Will Face Higher Penalties
In New York, an individual who is arrested for a DUI or DWI offense will probably have their blood alcohol level measured during the arrest. Those with a high BAC will receive harsher charges that those with a lower (but still illegal) BAC. New York law states that when an individual operates a motor vehicle with a BAC of .18 or higher, he or she will be charged with Aggravated Driving While Intoxicated, which is known as an Aggravated DWI.

What are the Penalties for Aggravated DWI Charges?
Those arrested for an Aggravated DWI may face a fine that can range from $1,000 to $2,000. In addition, these individuals may also lose their driving privileges for up to one year. Depending on the circumstances surrounding the arrest, an individual could also receive a maximum prison sentence of one year. If an individual who is charged with an Aggravated DWI is also facing other charges, the offense could be upgraded from a misdemeanor to a felony charge.

Can Law Enforcement Officials Stop Motorists at Random?
In New York, the law states that police officers must adhere to strict rules when they interact with drivers. Although some individuals believe a police officer can stop drivers at random, this is not the case.

What is the New York Law in Regards to Random Traffic Stops?
In New York, drivers are protected from random traffic stops by police officials under the law. This is applicable to every county in the state. According to the Supreme Court, random traffic stops are a direct violation of an individual’s rights under the Fourth Amendment. In order for a law enforcement official to make a legal stop, he or she must have probable cause.

Laws About Probable Cause and Traffic Stops
If a police officer has probable cause, he or she has justification to pull a driver over. This means a law enforcement official has observed something about the driver that suggests he or may be participating in illegal activity, such as driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. However, a police officer can also make a stop when there is a problem with the vehicle, such as when a taillight is broken or the vehicle’s tags have expired. One of the most common reasons that an offer justifies probable cause to make a vehicle stop is excessive speeding.

It is important to note that a law enforcement official must be able to prove probable cause in court, and when probable cause isn’t able to be established by the arresting police officer and the prosecution, the evidence that was collected during the arrest will no longer be admissible in court.

Roadblocks and sobriety stops are an exception to the random stop rule. In New York, a police officer can randomly stop a driver if he or she enters a sobriety checkpoint or a roadblock. In addition, it is also important to note that a police officer is not allowed to pull a driver over and reach into the vehicle to search for illegal substances. There are only a few instances when a law enforcement official is allowed to search a vehicle, such as if the driver gives consent, a warrant is presented, or the officer arrests the driver.

If you are facing a DUI or DWI conviction, it is vital to seek legal guidance as soon as possible. A criminal defense attorney can help an individual build a strong defensive case that will boost the chances of a positive outcome.

NYC DUI or Sobriety Checkpoint Lawyers

The purpose of a DUI or sobriety checkpoint is so law enforcement officials can stop vehicles on the road to see if drivers are impaired by drugs or alcohol. If an driver is stopped at a DUI checkpoint, a law enforcement officer will observe the driver for any signs of impairment. This may include the smell of alcohol on the driver’s breath or slowed and slurred speech. When a police officer observes suspicion that the driver is under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol, he or she will conduct a field sobriety test or a breathalyzer that can lead to an arrest.

In court, there have been many challenge to sobriety checkpoints. Many allege that sobriety checkpoints are a violation of the Forth Amendment that states it is prohibited for law enforcement officials to perform unreasonable search and seizures. However, the United States Supreme Court ruled that DUI and sobriety checkpoints do not meet the requisites of an unreasonable search, but the United States Supreme Court also ruled that it is up to each state to decide how to handle sobriety checkpoints. In most states, they are enforced.

However, it is important to note that sobriety checkpoints have to meet numerous requirements. For example, there must be visible notifications of the checkpoint, which may include signs or lights, and it is also required that the amount of time a vehicle is detained should be kept to a minimum. In addition, the police department is also required to to give advance notice of a DUI checkpoint, which can reduce the amount of individuals who drink and drive, and it is also a way for the sobriety checkpoints to be less intrusive to motorists.

When conducting a DUI checkpoint screening, a police office must use a specific formula to help him or her determine which vehicles will be stopped, so they are not allowed to stop vehicles at random at a sobriety checkpoint. If a driver is stopped at random by a police officer during a sobriety checkpoint, it could be a sign the police officer was profiling.

Police offers may choose to stop each car that comes through the sobriety checkpoint, or they may only stop every fourth vehicle. However, it is extremely rare for law enforcement officials to stop every vehicle because it would take an excessive amount of time, and it would also be an inconvenience for motorists.

Most of the time, DUI checkpoints will take place in the late evening or early morning hours. In addition, they are also commonly seen on holidays that may include New Year’s Eve, Labor Day weekend, or Memorial Day. The police department attempts to set up DUI checkpoints at times when there is an increase in drinking and driving. The idea of DUI checkpoints is two-fold, which is to reduce the numerous of drunk drivers and arrest those who are intoxicated while driving. In addition, this approach also reduces the chances of collisions due to drunk drivers.

However, you should take note that you are entitled to constitutional protection during a sobriety checkpoint. It is not required for drivers to answer any questions from law enforcement officials, and they are not required to consent to a search. Although some individuals refuse to give a police officer their driver’s license and registration because DUI points can be seen as legally questionable, it is best to present these items to a police officer when asked. There are some individual who choose to put their driver’s license and registration in a clear plastic bag and hang it out the window for a police officer, and these individuals may include a note that explains the reason they refuse to lower their window. As drivers are not under obligation to lower the window for a law enforcement officials during at a sobriety checkpoint, it is completely legal to hand your license to an officer in the manner that was previously explained.

Although some drivers attempt to make a U-turn or evade sobriety checkpoint by changing their route, it is notable that law enforcement official closely watch vehicles as they near a roadblock. If you choose not to drive through a sobriety checkpoint by going another way, you are not in violation of the law, and a police officer is not able to use this as a valid reason to pull someone over. However, any traffic laws that were violated by a driver, such as illegal U-turns, would give a police officer a valid reason to make the stop.

Christine Twomey
Christine Twomey
2024-03-21
Just had my Divorce case settled 2 months ago after having a horrible experience with another firm. I couldn’t be happier with Claire Banks and Elizabeth Garvey with their outstanding professionalism in doing so with Spodek Law Group. Any time I needed questions answered they were always prompt in doing so with all my uncertainties after 30 yrs of marriage.I feel from the bottom of my heart you will NOT be disappointed with either one. Thanks a million.
Brendan huisman
Brendan huisman
2024-03-18
Alex Zhik contacted me almost immediately when I reached out to Spodek for a consultation and was able to effectively communicate the path forward/consequences of my legal issue. I immediately agreed to hire Alex for his services and did not regret my choice. He was able to cover my case in court (with 1 day notice) and not only was he able to push my case down, he carefully negotiated a dismissal of the charge altogether. I highly recommend Spodek, and more specifically, Alex Zhik for all of your legal issues. Thanks guys!
Guerline Menard
Guerline Menard
2024-03-18
Thanks again Spodek law firm, particularly Esq Claire Banks who stood right there with us up to the finish line. Attached photos taken right outside of the court building and the smile on our faces represented victory, a breath of fresh air and satisfaction. We are very happy that this is over and we can move on with our lives. Thanks Spodek law 🙏🏼🙏🏼🙏🏼🙏🏼🙌🏼❤️
Keisha Parris
Keisha Parris
2024-03-15
Believe every single review here about Alex Z!! From our initial consultation, it was evident that Alex possessed a profound understanding of criminal law and a fierce dedication to his clients rights. Throughout the entirety of my case, Alex exhibited unparalleled professionalism and unwavering commitment. What sets Alex apart is not only his legal expertise but also his genuine compassion for his clients. He took the time to thoroughly explain my case, alleviating any concerns I had along the way. His exact words were “I’m not worried about it”. His unwavering support and guidance were invaluable throughout the entire process. I am immensely grateful for Alex's exceptional legal representation and wholeheartedly recommend his services to anyone in need of a skilled criminal defense attorney. Alex Z is not just a lawyer; he is a beacon of hope for those navigating the complexities of the legal system. If you find yourself in need of a dedicated and competent legal advocate, look no further than Alex Z.
Taïko Beauty
Taïko Beauty
2024-03-15
I don’t know where to start, I can write a novel about this firm, but one thing I will say is that having my best interest was their main priority since the beginning of my case which was back in Winter 2019. Miss Claire Banks, one of the best Attorneys in the firm represented me very well and was very professional, respectful, and truthful. Not once did she leave me in the dark, in fact she presented all options and routes that could possibly be considered for my case and she reinsured me that no matter what I decided to do, her and the team will have my back and that’s exactly what happened. Not only will I be liberated from this case, also, I will enjoy my freedom and continue to be a mother to my first born son and will have no restrictions with accomplishing my goals in life. Now that’s what I call victory!! I thank the Lord, My mother, Claire, and the Spodek team for standing by me and fighting with me. Words can’t describe how grateful I am to have the opportunity to work with this team. I’m very satisfied, very pleased with their performance, their hard work, and their diligence. Thank you team!
Anthony Williams
Anthony Williams
2024-03-12
Hey, how you guys doing? Good afternoon my name is Anthony Williams I just want to give a great shout out to the team of. Spodek law group. It is such a honor to use them and to use their assistance through this whole case from start to finish. They did everything that they said they was gonna do and if it ever comes down to it, if I ever have to use them again, hands-down they will be the first law office at the top of my list, thank you guys so much. It was a pleasure having you guys by my side so if you guys ever need them, do not hesitate to pick up the phone and give them a call.
Loveth Okpedo
Loveth Okpedo
2024-03-12
Very professional, very transparent, over all a great experience
Bee L
Bee L
2024-02-28
Amazing experience with Spodek! Very professional lawyers who take your case seriously. They treated me with respect, were always available, and answered any and all questions. They were able to help me very successfully and removed a huge stress. Highly recommend.
divesh patel
divesh patel
2024-02-24
I can't recommend Alex Zhik and Spodek Law Firm highly enough for their exceptional legal representation and personal mentorship. From the moment I engaged their services in October 2022, Alex took the time to understand my case thoroughly and provided guidance every step of the way. Alex's dedication to my case went above and beyond my expectations. His expertise, attention to detail, and commitment to achieving the best possible outcome were evident throughout the entire process. He took the time to mentor me, ensuring I understood the legal complexities involved to make informed decisions. Alex is the kind of guy you would want to have a beer with and has made a meaningful impact on me. I also want to acknowledge Todd Spodek, the leader of the firm, who played a crucial role in my case. His leadership and support bolstered the efforts of Alex, and his involvement highlighted the firm's commitment to excellence. Thanks to Alex Zhik and Todd Spodek, I achieved the outcome I desired, and I am incredibly grateful for their professionalism, expertise, and genuine care. If you're in need of legal representation, look no further than this outstanding team.

If you have been arrested at a sobriety checkpoint, it is vital to contact a criminal defense attorney immediately. There are many instances where the police did not have probable cause to detain individuals arrested at a sobriety checkpoint. A skilled attorney can ensure all your rights are protected.

 

Introduction to New Drunk Driving Law

On August 2, Governor Cuomo will sign a tough new drunk driving law. The law makes it a felony to drive drunk with children under the age of 15 in the car. The law also requires all convicted drunk drivers to install an ignition interlock in their cars or trucks.

Changes Under the New Law

Under a current law known as “Leandra’s Law”, convicted drunk drivers have been able to avoid installing ignition interlocks in the cars, which are Breathalyzer-type devices, by saying they don’t own a car. Under the new law, convicted drunk drivers will have to take an oath in court saying they no longer own a vehicle in order to avoid installing the device. If they are caught lying, they could face perjury charges as well as other criminal charges.

Increased Penalties

The bill also increases the period of time that a driver’s license is suspended for drivers who don’t install ignition interlocks – from six months currently to one year under the bill. Any motorists who drive drunk under a conditional license also face increased penalties. Conditional licenses are licenses that the court issues to convicted drunk drivers who need to drive in order to get to and from work. Finally, the bill also makes anyone convicted of a DUI/DWI in New York who is under the age of 18 subject to the installation of interlock systems.

Importance of Avoiding DUI/DWI Convictions

DUI and DWI penalties are greatly increasing under the bill, and most likely will continue to do so. Therefore, if you are facing DUI or DWI charges in New York., it’s critical that you avoid a conviction. A drunk driving conviction on your record can seriously harm your ability in the future to obtain a job or a professional license, as well as can harm your life in other ways.

Considerations for Hiring a DUI Attorney

When charged with a DUI, especially if it’s the first one you’ve ever gotten, it might seem like a good idea to not hire a DUI attorney. When a price tag of thousands of dollars is tacked on to having one, turning down a Los Angeles DUI attorney sounds even better. Before you decide not to get a DUI attorney, though, the truth is hiring one can be incredibly beneficial to you and your future.

DUI Charges Are Very Serious

When being charged with a DUI, it’s important to know that the consequences very serious, even for the first DUI. Most people might think that they just have to pay a fine and they’re done. While a fine is possible, you may also be forced to do community service hours, have your driver’s license suspended, or even spend time in jail for the first DUI charge. In the aftermath, the price of your car insurance may increase and, if you drive a company vehicle, you might not be able to get car insurance at all. A DUI attorney is going to be able to lessen the consequences of the DUI charge even before you have to go to trial. They’ll also be able to tell you if you should plead innocent or guilty and what that plea will mean for you in the future.

Attorneys Know The System

If you’re being charged with your first DUI and you’ve never been charged with a crime before, the court process can be incredibly overwhelming. Luckily, if you hire a DUI attorney, they’ve been trained in law. They’re going to know the system very well. Plus, they’ve gone through this process with other individuals before. They’re going to know how to handle you, your case, and the other people involved in the trial. This means that they’re going to be able to speak for you in ways that you wouldn’t be able to do on your own.

It’s Cheaper In The Long Run

Thousands of dollars to hire one man to help you might sound like a lot, but if you don’t have that legal help, there’s going to be a lot more money and time spent on your own. Because DUI attorneys know the system and can speak for you, they’re going to be better equipped to handle the pressures of court and, in turn, lessen fines, time spent in jail and community service, and even prevent your driver’s license from being revoked. Just on having your driver’s license in tact, you’re going to be able to drive places on your own, saving money on taxis, buses, and other services that would cost more than driving your car alone. On deducted fines and lesser time spent in jail and doing community service, it’s not long before hiring that attorney pays for itself.

Penalties for DWI in New York City

New Year’s Eve is here, and that brings extra DWI checkpoints and arrests of drunk drivers who were celebrating a little too much. Many people think that having a couple of drinks won’t affect their driving ability, or they may think that drinking and driving really isn’t that big of a problem.

Unfortunately, drinking and driving is a huge problem in New York. About a third of the traffic fatalities in New York State involve intoxicated or impaired pedestrians or drivers. And studies have shown that any amount of drinking will affect a driver’s coordination and judgment. How much a person becomes impaired depends on the amount of alcohol that person drinks, whether food is eaten before or while drinking, a person’s weight, and the length of time spent drinking.

If you do choose to drink and drive, the chances of being caught are better than ever. New York State has a program called STOP-DWI that returns drunk driving fines to counties if they use the money to operate programs for drunk driving enforcement, prosecution, adjudication, and education. Every New York county has a STOP-DWI program.

The penalties for a DWI in New York are steep. If you are under 21, your driver’s license will be revoked for a year if you are convicted of a DWI in New York, or if you refuse to take a chemical test. If you commit a second offense while you’re under 21, your license is revoked for a year or until you turn 21, whichever’s longer. People over 21 receive either a three month or six month license suspension or revocation. In addition to the loss of your driver’s license, people caught drinking and driving face a jail sentence and a fine, as well as increased insurance premiums in the future and other negative consequences.

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Todd Spodek

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CLAIRE BANKS

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RAJESH BARUA

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CHAD LEWIN

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