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Bucher Law Group, LLC
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Waukesha County OWI defense lawyer boating under the influence

With summer comes the welcome of warm weather, and people typically like to spend more time outside. For many Wisconsin residents, boating is a fun outdoor pastime. What some people may not know is that many of the same restrictions that are placed on drivers regarding drugs or alcohol are also true for boat operators. Thus, who are boating while under the influence can be charged with Operating While Intoxicated (OWI). Even though relaxing on the water with a drink in hand may seem like a perfect summer day, it can pose serious consequences for those who are not responsible about it.

Wisconsin OWI Laws

Laws are very similar when it comes to the legal operation of motor vehicles and watercraft in Wisconsin. You are not permitted to have a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .08 or more when you are operating a motor vehicle or a boat. For the first offense, you could be fined up to $500. A second offense carries up to $1,000 in fines, in addition to possible jail time. A third offense results in up to $2,000 in fines and 30 days to one year in jail. You will also be required to complete a boating safety course and obtain a certificate of completion.

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Waukesha, WI DUI lawyers

Wisconsin police law enforcement and the courts do not take OWI charges lightly. In the state of Wisconsin, even a first offense of operating a vehicle while intoxicated can result in a fine of up to $300, a $435 OWI surcharge, a six- to nine-month driver’s license revocation, and a significant mark on your criminal record.

In recent years, Wisconsin lawmakers have pushed to make consequences for first-time OWI offenses more strict, although lawmakers typically punish OWI charges to the fullest extent of the law. However, there are certain elements a strong DUI defense can focus on to help mitigate the consequences.

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Delafield OWI defense attorneyWhen you are behind the wheel of a car, you have a duty to other people on the road, and that duty is simple: behave in a way that does not put yourself or others into danger. Unfortunately, according to the Wisconsin Department of Transportation, around 28,790 people were arrested for operating a vehicle while intoxicated (OWI) in 2015, and 23,931 were actually convicted. Drunk driving can be deadly, and even when it is not, it can cause a great deal of harm, which is why a DUI/OWI charge in Wisconsin is taken very seriously.

First Offense OWI

Consequences for a first-time DUI conviction in Wisconsin are mainly aimed at educating the offender and changing their habits or behaviors. There is typically no jail time, but there is a possible fine of $100 to $300, plus a $435 OWI surcharge. First-time offenders will also face a driver’s license revocation of six to nine months, and if their blood alcohol content (BAC) was over .15, an ignition interlock device or 24/7 sobriety program will be required for one year.

Second Offense OWI

If you have no prior OWIs in the past 10 years, and you never committed any bodily harm or homicide in an accident, sentencing will generally be more lenient than if you had. A second DUI offense will mean that you will face a possible fine of $100 to $300, plus a $435 OWI surcharge, along with a six to nine month license revocation, with the stipulation that you will be required to use an ignition interlock device or 24/7 sobriety program for at least one year.

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5 Common Misconceptions About DUI Charges

Milwaukee County DUI/OWI defense attorneyA DUI charge can be frightening. If you have been arrested for DUI/OWI, you may be unsure of your rights and how to proceed. By educating yourself on some of the most common misconceptions about DUI charges, you can gain a better understanding of how drunk driving charges work and what your legal options may be. Here is a brief list of five of the most common misconceptions about DUI charges: 

1. If I Am Charged With a DUI, I Am Automatically Guilty. 

Fortunately, a DUI charge and a DUI conviction are not the same. By seeking experienced legal representation for your DUI charge, you may be able to get your charges reduced or have your case dismissed. A lawyer can search for flaws in the prosecutor’s case which may improve your situation. 

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5 Mistakes to Avoid When Arrested for DUI

Waukesha, WI DUI/OWI defense lawyerAfter a DUI/OWI arrest, you will likely feel overwhelmed and unsure of what to do. In order to ensure that your rights are protected and increase the chances of a favorable outcome for your case, it is important to clear your mind and avoid making some common mistakes. Here is a list of five mistakes you should be aware of:

1. Ignoring Your Charge

Believe it or not, some people believe that ignoring a DUI charge is a good idea. You should know that taking no action after you have been arrested for a DUI will not cause your charge to disappear. In fact, failing to appear in court for your DUI can lead to additional charges that may result in fines and jail time.

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