Receiving a DUI charge already presents a challenge for individuals who are not familiar with criminal justice and court processes. An out-of-state DUI presents a more complex ordeal for DUI offenders depending on the distance between charging state and their home state as well as the unique laws of that state. Individuals who receive an out-of-state DUI charge have a number of things to consider including making in-court appearances in that jurisdiction, ensuring an understanding of the license suspension rules and whether suspension carries over into their home state, and how penalties will affect them in the place of offense and in their home state.
Suspension of Driver's License
Let us use the state of Mississippi as an example for the purposes of explaining what offenders have to consider with an out-of-state DUI charge. If you are convicted of DUI, you risk the penalty of having your driver's license suspended. If you are an out-of-state resident convicted of DUI in the state of Mississippi, the conviction is normally reported to your home state. Any license suspension that follows will apply in both your home state and in the state of Mississippi. The length of time your license will be suspended will coincide with the amount of time Mississippi requires that your license be suspended. When the license of an individual is suspended, it is reported to a nationwide agency overseeing the issuance of driver's licenses. As a result, the relevant state or local jurisdiction will be informed of all past and current suspensions no matter the jurisdiction.
Court appearances are a struggle for most out-of-state offenders. This is especially the case when the distance between the individual's home state and the state of the offense is far. For example, if an offender lives in Vermont, but has a pending DUI charge in California, the offender will have to plan ahead to ensure compliance with court dates and other appearances. Unfortunately, if an offender is unable to make those required appearances, there is a likelihood a court can issue a bench warrant for his or her arrest. In some instances, the warrant will follow the individual on nationwide policing systems. Having an out-of-state case can present more risk given a higher possibility of missed court appearances andnoncompliance with other state-specific requirements.
Penalties and Other Consequences
Other penalties associated with an out-of-state DUI are similar to those in Mississippi. These can include payment of court fines and costs, registration in an alcohol education course, and the installation of an interlock Breathalyzer system in the convicted person's vehicle. All of these processes are complicated no matter the state. Adding the distance can make it quite complex for the individual who wishes to comply. In certain cases, the court will register the penalty with the offender's local jurisdiction. That way, he or she can comply with the penalty in his or her own home state without having to travel.
Your DUI Attorney
James Robert Ferguson is a skilled DUI attorney with years of experience defending DUI cases. Driving Under the Influence is a serious crime. If you have been charged with DUI, you need an experienced attorney on your side. Attorney Ferguson understands the importance of putting this charge behind you. Call us now for a consultation.
See related blog posts:
Expect These Penalties for a First-Time DUI Conviction
DUI Penalties in Mississippi