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How DUI or DWI Will Affect Your Insurance

One scary consideration for many drivers after a DUI/DWI arrest is the question of how it will affect their insurance premiums. If you have just had a DUI/ DWI, you probably haven’t seen any immediate changes to your insurance costs and you are wondering what is going to happen.

A DUI/ DWI conviction will probably have an effect on your premiums eventually. If you were deemed responsible for an accident related to drinking or drugs, your insurance company will be notified immediately. They will then do one of three things:

  • Drop you from their coverage and require you look for another company
  • Substantially raise your rates
  • Place you in a new higher-risk category of coverage, which will either lower your coverage or your raise premiums (or both)

If you were simply stopped at a DUI checkpoint, your insurance company will probably not be notified unless your license is revoked or suspended by the DMV. If you haven’t yet been to your first appearance in court, any sort of temporary suspension (such as a suspension pending prosecution) will not have been reported.

This doesn’t mean you are in the clear, though. Insurance companies can run your driving history at any time and find out about your DUI/DWI and take the same actions they would for an accident. Insurance premiums can increase by hundreds of dollars. Typically, insurance agencies run a driver’s history once every few years, and if you ever change states of residency or insurance companies, they will run a check on your driving history.

Although in New York a DUI/DWI conviction won’t add points to your license, they will accrue what the DMV calls “negative units” on your record. Negative units are notes on your unseen record that will still be reported to insurance companies when they request your driving history.

In New York, the insurance companies get what is called an “abstract” of all the driving violations for which you have ever been charged. This would not only include your DUI/DWI, but also any speeding tickets or other infractions, all of which will affect your insurance premiums for up to three years after the incident.

The good news is that after three years if you have no other points against your name, your insurance company will no longer be able to penalize you for the DUI or DWI. Even if your current company drops your coverage, there are many other companies willing to take you on as a customer.

Contact Us

The best way to avoid this problem is by successfully contesting a DUI/ DWI charge and having it dismissed. Jason Steinberger is a DWI/ DUI Defense Lawyer in Bronx County with years of experience in successfully contesting DUI/ DWI cases. Even if he can’t have your case dismissed outright, he will fight to help you receive the best possible outcome. Jason Steinberger can be reached any time to discuss your case at 646-256-1007. Call now to get more information about your DUI/DWI case and get the support you need.

Is it Illegal to Be Intoxicated Publicly in NY?

Whether or not it is illegal to be publicly intoxicated in New York depends on the particular situation. It is not illegal to be publicly intoxicated from alcohol usage, but it is illegal to be publicly intoxicated from drug usage. In fact, the latter could lead to a jail sentence of up to 15 days and a fine of $250 if the person is found guilty. However, according to the New York Penal Code, this is only the case if the person intoxicated from drug use is acting in a violent manner or being publicly annoying. In other words, while you cannot be arrested for merely seeming to be under the influence of a drug or narcotic other than alcohol in public, you certainly can be arrested if your behavior is violent or disruptive.

Protective Custody Laws

Additionally, it is important to note that it is legal for a police officer to place someone who is publicly intoxicated into protective custody, but only if the person consents. However, if the intoxicated individual is incapacitated and acting irrationally, the police officer does not need the individual’s consent to take him or her into custody. The police officer can take the intoxicated person either home or to a hospital. If the person is in poor condition, and it seems that he or she cause harm, then the officer must take the person to a hospital and have the person examined. If the doctor determines that the individual is possibly a danger, then it is legal for the individual to be maintained in protective custody for 48 hours maximum.

Stay Away from the Keys Even if You Are Not Driving

Finally, take extreme caution while being around your car while you are intoxicated. Even if you are not planning to drive your car while intoxicated, sitting behind the wheel with the keys in the ignition can cause you to be arrested for a DWI. The law judges this as possible intent and due to the seriousness of DUIs and DWIs, it may not matter if you were planning on driving while intoxicated.

Therefore, while it is not technically illegal to be intoxicated publicly from alcohol usage in New York, keep in mind that there are many subtleties to the laws that could still land you in trouble.

Contact Jason Steinberger

If you have been charged with a DWI, or any crime relating to public intoxication in which you believe you have been unfairly treated or charged, contact me, Jason Steinberger, and I would be happy to provide you with a free legal consultation. My number is 718-585-2833 and I can be reached 24/7. I take great pride in standing up for ordinary citizens and ensuring that they are aggressively and fairly represented in every situation.

Finding the Best DUI Attorney in New York

Upon initially searching for a lawyer to represent you for your DUI charge, it may seem that any attorney will do. However, this is not the case, and a decision should not be made hastily. Due to political pressure and an increasing social stigma, a DUI charge is taken very seriously in New York courts and it could result in possible jail time, along with the suspension of your driver’s license along with heavy fines. This is especially true if you have been previously convicted of a DUI. Additionally, a DUI conviction can make it difficult to acquire security clearance (for a job or otherwise), obtain a professional license, and travel out of the country.

For this reason, it is very important which DUI attorney you choose to represent you. Legal jargon is difficult to interpret and requires an experienced professional to interpret the laws properly, ensuring that every option is understood, and the best one chosen. Additionally, laws frequently change, so it is important to hire an attorney that is up-to-date with the current details of the legal code.

How to Find Your Best Option

Because of the importance of finding a good attorney, you should do some thorough research on your options. If you have not already done so, consider asking your friends or relatives if they have any experience with local DUI attorneys. A personal referral from someone you trust that has first-hand experience can be an invaluable resource.

However, if you do not have such a resource, there is plenty of information available online that could be of service to you. The Internet is a valuable tool, not only because of its depth of information, but also because there are resources that provide clients’ ratings of experiences with lawyers. Be certain that the resource you are using is a valid, legitimate guide. For example, the AVVO database allows people to search for lawyers based on location of practice and specific area of expertise. You can find lawyers that can help in any area of New York, including the Bronx.

Be Specific

It should be noted that it is important to search for attorneys who work specifically with DUI cases, as these attorneys will be much more familiar with the particular, current details of DUI laws. When considering your options for a DUI attorney, make sure to note not only client reviews but how many years of service the lawyer has, and if his or her service has mostly been in the state in which you have been charged. Additionally, it is worthwhile to call potential DUI lawyers to assess if you are comfortable working with them.

Contact Us Today

If you have been charged with a DUI in the Bronx, consider calling me, Jason Steinberger, at 718-585-2833 to represent you in your DUI case. You can contact me anytime 24/7, and I will provide a free consultation to help you understand your basic options. I have served as the Bronx Prosecutor, meaning that I am very familiar with the local laws in New York and I have a great deal of experience in understanding and arguing valid interpretations of those laws. I look forward to helping you obtain your best outcome.