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Dover, NH DWI Attorney

Aggressively Defending Dover Residents Against DUI Charges

Driving while intoxicated (DWI) and driving under the influence (DUI) are serious charges with serious penalties. For many, a single DWI conviction comes with immense disruptions and penalties that impact one’s finances, driving privileges, and ability to work and earn a living. For some, a DWI with certain aggravating factors puts life-altering penalties and imprisonment on the table.

If you or a loved one were arrested and charged with a DWI anywhere in Dover, Strafford County, or the surrounding areas in New Hampshire, the time to speak with a qualified defense attorney is now.

Shaheen & Gordon, P.A. is a nationally recognized trial practice known for having one of the state’s most experienced and trusted DWI defense teams. Comprised of award-winning defense attorneys and former prosecutors, our firm has the resources and insight to help clients charged with DWI offenses protect their rights, driving privileges, and freedom.

If you have questions about a recent arrest and how our Dover DWI defense lawyers can help you, call (888) 801-9916 or contact us onlinefor a confidential consultation.

What Is a DWI vs. DUI?

Driving while intoxicated and driving under the influence (DUI) are simply two different ways to describe the same offense: drunk and impaired driving. Another common synonym is operating under the influence (OUI).

In Dover and the rest of New Hampshire, the official charge tends to be noted down as a DWI.

By any name, DWI charges are serious crimes. They may be prosecuted as misdemeanors or felonies, depending on the circumstances, and they can carry far-reaching penalties that threaten your financial health, your ability to drive, and your freedom.

DWI charges may also be brought against drivers of a range of "vehicles," including automobiles, motorcycles, boats, and recreational/off-road vehicles.

At Shaheen & Gordon, our Dover DWI attorneys have decades of collective experience fighting for clients in DWI cases involving all types of charges, aggravating circumstances, and penalties. We know the local courts, the laws, and the strategies capable of producing favorable outcomes. Most importantly, we’re able to leverage our insight to provide the guidance and information clients need to navigate the system and protect their rights.

DWI Penalties in Dover, NH

Whatever you call a DWI charge, facing one is no laughing matter. If convicted, you may face expensive fines, jail time, probation, and/or license suspension. The exact penalties depend on whether you have been previously convicted of a DWI, as well as whether there are any aggravating factors.

First DWI Offense

If you are arrested on DWI charges for the first time in Dover, NH, you can expect a costly fine. Normally, the New Hampshire courts will issue a minimum $500 fine to any first-time offenders, but that fine may be increased if there are aggravating factors (i.e. higher BAC). Other penalties include a driver’s license suspension of anywhere between 9 months to 2 years (though these suspensions may be reduced to six months based on successful completion of the Impaired Driver Care Management Program (IDCMP).

Second DWI Offense

Subsequent DWI Offenses in New Hampshire are upgraded to Class A misdemeanors, which include a mandatory minimum jail sentence. Potential penalties include increased fines between $750 to $2,000, a 3-year license suspension, a jail sentence of up to 12 months, and completion of the Impaired Driver Care Management Program (IDCMP). The length of a jail sentence depends on the facts of a case. When a second DWI charge occurs within 2 years of a prior DWI conviction, the minimum mandatory jail sentence is 60 nights. However, 30 nights of this required sentence may be suspended, leaving 30 nights to serve in jail. Individuals convicted of a second offense where a prior conviction is between 2 and 10 years old face a minimum sentence of 17 nights in jail of which 5 nights must be served in jail with the remaining 12 suspended.

Third DWI Offense

Three DWI convictions within 10 years raise the stakes considerably.Third DWI Offenses are punishable by up to $2,000 in fines, indefinite license revocation (restoration is not possible for 5 years), and a minimum 180-day jail sentence, 150 days of which may be suspended, leaving a minimum of 30 days to be served in a county jail. Completion of the Impaired Driver Care Management Program (IDCMP) is also required.

Aggravated DWI

In New Hampshire, a person can be charged with aggravated DWI on their first, second, third, or subsequent DWI when at least one of the following factors are present:

  • Excessive speed (over 30mph above the speed limit)
  • A BAC of .16 or higher
  • Evading police / fleeing the scene
  • Carrying a child passenger (under 16)
  • Accidents resulting in serious bodily injury

Aggravated DWI penalties create the potential for enhanced penalties. First-time aggravated DWI convictions include fines up to $2,000, an 18-to 24-month license suspension (which may be reduced by 6 months based on completion of the Impaired Driver Care Management Program (IDCMP), and a minimum jail sentence of 17 days of which 12 days may be suspended, leaving a minimum of 5 days to serve in jail.

Restoring your privilege to drive after any DWI conviction requires an SR-22 insurance policy, proof of IDCMP program completion, and a reinstatement fee. Installation of an ignition interlock device is also required following any subsequent offense or aggravated offense DWI conviction.

Minimizing DWI Penalties

At Shaheen & Gordon, P.A., we help clients protect their rights, challenge their charges, and minimize penalties as much as possible by leveraging our experience and providing comprehensive representation. Some of the ways we fight for clients include:

  • Challenging license suspensions and seeking early reinstatement of driving privileges at administrative hearings. This includes helping clients promptly enroll in the Impaired Driver Care Management Program (IDCMP) or agreeing to the installation of ignition interlock devices (IIDs) in their vehicles, which can substantially reduce suspension terms.
  • Gathering and evaluating all evidence to aid in the construction of potential defense strategies, which may include challenging an arresting officer's cause to make a stop or arrest, challenging the results of breath or blood tests, and identifying any errors or inconsistencies that could weaken the prosecution’s case.
  • Negotiating with prosecutors to reduce charges and/or penalties. This may be achieved by effectively challenging the government's evidence in the case or entering into good-faith negotiations for alternative sentencing options.
  • Protecting your rights throughout the entirety of the process. Our attorneys know DWI charges are often and understand that a drunk driving allegation may be the first time folks are forced to deal with the criminal justice system, which is why we provide personalized, supportive counsel every step of the way.

Protect Your Rights & License. Call Our Dover DWI/DUI Lawyers Today.

DWI charges carry significant penalties that can affect you and your family for years to come, which is why it is critically important that you seek the support of an experienced defense attorney.

With more than 40 years of experience, our DWI defense attorneys in Dover, NH can help you confidently navigate both the administrative and criminal proceedings of your DWI case, all while working to build the strongest possible defense on your behalf. Because there are timely issues inherent to these cases – especially in terms of protecting your driving privileges – we encourage anyone who has been charged to speak with our team as soon as possible.

Call (603) 871-4144 to learn more about how our Dover, NH DWI attorneys can help.

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