Defending Persons Charged with DWI/DUI

A DWI charge does not mean you will automatically lose your driver’s license. You have the right to a hearing to determine if your license should be suspended. If you do nothing your license will be suspended.

Your license may not have to be suspended!

Connecticut DUI arrests trigger two separate cases! You must defend yourself in two separate forums:

  • First, there is the court case, where the prosecutor seeks the full array of DWI consequences following a drunk driving arrest.
  • Second, there is also a Connecticut DMV Hearing, where an action is taken against the driver’s license of the person accused of the Connecticut DUI.


laws for Connecticut DUI, Connecticut drunk driving, or Connecticut DWI, please contact a Connecticut DUI defense attorney at once to protect your driving privileges. Failure to do so will result in the automatic suspension of your driver’s license.

Once you receive the DMV notice, you have only SEVEN DAYS to request a hearing.
Connecticut drunk driving cases are referred to as Connecticut DUI, DWI, or drunk driving. The terms are interchangeable. They all relate to the same type of case: driving under the influence of alcohol and/or other drugs.

Connecticut DUI law allows for prosecution on two different theories:

  • First, it is illegal to drive under the influence of alcohol, drugs, or a combination of alcohol and drugs. It is not necessary to have any particular blood alcohol level under this theory of drunk driving prosecution. This type of DWI is proven if the driver is impaired by intoxicants. Impairment may be shown through driving pattern, field sobriety test performance, or chemical test results. However, chemical test results are not necessary for this theory of drunk driving prosecution for Connecticut DUI. The only required showing is the driver’s impairment.
  • Connecticut DWI law also allows prosecution for violating the state’s laws. This makes it a crime to drive with a blood alcohol level of .08% or higher. Under this theory of Connecticut DUI, the impairment of the driver does not matter. This Connecticut drunk driving prosecution is based only on body chemistry. Mental or physical impairment from alcohol is irrelevant to this type of Connecticut DUI.

Connecticut DUI law requires anyone arrested for Connecticut drunk driving to submit to a test of his or her blood or breath to determine alcohol content. Failure to do so will result in a DMV suspension for a minimum of six months.
Connecticut DUI law has a 10-year look-back period. This means that if you have a drunk driving conviction that is more than 10 years old, a new Connecticut DWI arrest will be treated as a first-offense. However, if you have one or more drunk driving convictions that are less than 10 years old, the new arrest will be treated as a second or third offense, depending upon the number of prior DUI convictions.

Criminal Penalties Through Court – Under Connecticut’s criminal law, the driver arrested for DUI will receive both a summons and a court date. If the court proceedings result in a conviction, the following penalties must be imposed:

  • First Offense – Test results of .08% or higher: Fine – $500 to $1,000, Jail: 6 months; 48 hours minimum mandatory up to 6 months, suspended with 100 hours community service, Suspension: One Year.
  • Second Offense (within 10 years) – Test results of .08% or higher: Fine: $1,000 to $4,000, Jail: 2 years; 120 days minimum mandatory and 100 hours of community service, three years (or until you are 21 years of age, whichever is longer)
  • Third Offense (within 10 years of last conviction) – Test results of .08% or higher: Fine: $2,000 to $8,000, Jail: 3 years; 1 year minimum mandatory and 100 hours of community service, Suspension: Permanent revocation.

Administrative Per Se Through DMV – The driver’s license sanctions (license suspension periods) outlined below have been revised recently and will be imposed in addition to criminal penalties. In most cases, the driver’s license sanctions will be imposed much earlier. In all cases, they will be imposed in additional to criminal penalties and will appear on your driving record.

Refusal to submit to a blood, breathe or urine test:

First offense: 6 months, Second offense: one year, Third offense: 3 years.

  • Test results of .02% or higher and you are under 21 years of age 90 days.
  • Test results of .08% or higher; up to, but not including, .16%: 90 days for a first offense, 9 months for the second offense and 2 years a third offense.
  • Test results of .16% or higher: 120 days for a first offense, 10 months for a second offense and 2 ½ years for a third offense.

If you have been arrested for operating under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs and either failed a chemical alcohol analysis of your blood, breath or urine or refused to submit to such analysis, your operator’s license or privilege is suspended effective 12:01 a.m. on the 31st day following the date of the arrest. A Notice of Suspension will be mailed to your address of record allowing seven days to request a hearing.

If you or someone you care about has been arrested for drunk driving, DUI, or DWI in Connecticut, please contact me immediately to protect your rights. Remember, you have only SEVEN DAYS to request a DMV hearing, so it is critical to act right away if you’ve been arrest for a Connecticut DUI.

Mark T. Stern

2452 Black Rock Turnpike Fairfield, CT 06825


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