DUI Lawyer in Florida

At Meltzer & Bell, P.A., we are committed to helping Florida residents accused of DUI prepare the best criminal defense possible and aggressively fight their charges. Our experienced criminal defense lawyers have an enviable track record of delivering exceptional results in DUI and criminal cases across the Treasure Coast region and Maricopa County.

We understand Florida DUI laws better than anyone, and our specialized DUI attorneys have helped hundreds of clients charged with DUI avoid a conviction with acquittals, reduced charges, case dismissals, and many other favorable case outcomes.

Our law firm has the legal knowledge and decades of legal experience you desperately need following your DUI arrest. The criminal defense lawyers at Meltzer & Bell, P.A. will provide the right advice to get the best outcome in your DUI criminal matter.

Get a free case evaluation 24/7 from a qualified DUI defense attorney NOW

 

Your life changes in an instant with DUI

One minute you’re driving along, the next, a police officer is requesting a breath test, and then you’re arrested with court dates looming.

DUI is a nightmare that often comes out of nowhere to change your life forever.

We understand the stress and anxiety that comes with DUI arrests. Our team of DUI attorneys can immediately begin preparing your criminal defense to the prosecution’s case for drunk driving.

A DUI Conviction = Serious Consequences

DUI criminal charges are very serious offenses that can rapidly alter your life if you get convicted.

The consequences of receiving a DUI conviction can affect your life forever when you’re facing:

Potential imprisonment (JAIL time)

Crippling fines

license suspension – including removing your driving privileges

Future challenges IN securing employment

There are just some of the dire consequences that can follow a DUI conviction

Unfortunately, the legal consequences are only the beginning, with a DUI conviction delivering severe financial implications, including higher insurance rates, hefty fees for installing an ignition interlock device (IID) if required, and many more financial burdens that you don’t need.

DUI can stay on your record for decades to come

A DUI conviction can stay on your driving record for decades to come, and you might not be able to purge the DUI charge from your criminal history for a long time. That’s why you need an experienced DUI attorney to aggressively fight the charges and protect your freedom.

We can help with your DUI arrest

When you are facing a DUI charge in Florida, you are welcome to visit us at Meltzer & Bell, P.A. to receive comprehensive advice on your unique circumstances from an experienced attorney.

Our experienced DUI lawyers can help you consider your defense options. We recommend contacting an attorney immediately and avoiding waiting until it is too late. The earlier you get an attorney on your case, the better the outcome that you can expect to receive

Contact us anytime for advice on your drunk driving case so that we can start preparing a criminal defense on your behalf.

Why Meltzer & Bell, P.A. DUI Lawyers

At Meltzer & Bell, P.A. Stuart, our sole focus is to serve clients facing DUI and criminal offenses. We always consider it an honor when a client approaches us to represent them.

In acknowledgment of the faith clients have in us, we leave no stone unturned in delivering the defense our clients deserve. We exploit every available option to serve our clients and aggressively defend their rights against DUI charges.

Our law firm has offices in Stuart and Fort Pierce with an attorney ready to help you win the best possible outcome for your DUI case, even outside of business hours.

The Meltzer & Bell, P.A. Law Firm Difference

Client-Driven Criminal Defense Lawyers

At Meltzer & Bell, P.A., we treasure our attorney client relationship and dedicate ourselves to serving client needs with high-quality legal representation.

Our entire law office team, from intake staff to criminal defense attorneys, know how valuable your freedom is to you.

We understand how stressful facing a criminal charges can be, regardless of the magnitude, and we are committed to providing a compassionate and empathic attorney client relationship.

We’ve walked hundreds of clients facing DUI convictions through the same journey you’re facing right now. We believe your life should come before everything else, which fuels our passion for fighting aggressively on your behalf. Our team understands that every submission we make will become a deciding factor for your future.

No matter how simple or complex your case is, you are in good hands with a DUI attorney from Meltzer & Bell, P.A.

DUI violations to Domestic Violence – we’re waiting for your call.

Approachable DUI Attorneys

Once you hire a DUI attorney from our law office to defend your DUI, you’ll have a personal representative you can talk to freely and openly until the matter is resolved.

We act as your voice with the advantage of significant knowledge and experience in all of the relevant Florida laws.

Years of experience in similar cases has allowed us to develop an empathetic and understanding culture throughout every member of our team.

We ensure that our clients are always comfortable discussing their criminal cases and derive the most benefit from our legal counsel all the way from engaging our services to completion.

Our DUI attorneys are accessible 24/7 for advice when you need it most. Whenever you have an urgent matter that needs our attention, you can get in touch with an attorney day or night. We’re ready to assist you regardless of the time, via email or phone call.

Experienced DUI Defense Lawyers

The truth is that any defense attorney can represent you, and no one can accurately predict the outcome of any trial case – however, experience counts and it regularly results in superior outcomes for our clients.

Choosing an attorney experienced in handling similar DUI cases is essential when your life is placed in their hands.

At Meltzer & Bell, P.A., we are experienced in representing DUI clients across Florida. We have a deep understanding of the specific Florida laws governing DUI offenses. Our team understands the DUI prosecution landscape and public defenders’ requirements.

Although no two cases are identical, our experience in local DUI trials helps us navigate these type of criminal cases with ease.

Proven Track Record

Once an attorney from Meltzer & Bell, P.A. takes on your DUI case, we do not promise to win – that’s impossible!

However, we do promise to give your case our all and exploit every legal option available to secure a favorable outcome for you.

No lawyer should promise to win your case, as anything can happen. However, it is always much safer to choose to work with a law firm that possesses a proven track record. At Meltzer & Bell, P.A., we have over 500 5-star reviews, thanks to the many cases we have represented successfully.


Overview of DUI Defense in Treasure Coast, FL


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Definition of DUI Under Florida Laws

Under Florida laws, a person is guilty of a DUI offense if they drive or are in physical control of a vehicle while under the influence of alcohol, an unlawful chemical substance (illegal drugs) or a controlled substance (prescription drugs) impairing their faculties.
To be charged with DUI, a police officer must establish that your blood-alcohol level is 0.08 grams or more per 100 milliliters of blood or your breath-alcohol level is 0.08 grams or more per 210 liters of breath using an approved test.


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Penalties of DUI Offense in Florida

DUI Lawyer Stuart Florida
Upon conviction for a DUI offense, the penalties can vary depending on the magnitude of the offense and whether it is a first or subsequent offense.
The State of Florida has adopted a strict approach to DUI and drunk driving cases involving motor vehicles and the penalties increase with previous DUI convictions.

For example, second and subsequent offenses carry stiffer penalties than the first DUI conviction as Florida actively penalizes repeat offenders.

However, the fate of a first-time DUI offender can change if they cause an accident resulting in bodily injury or death.

Generally, Florida penalizes DUI arrests with the following:

First Conviction

  • Fine – $500-1,000
  • Imprisonment (Jail time) – Maximum 6 months
  • Community service – 50 hours
  • Impoundment of Motor Vehicle – 10 days
  • Driver’s License suspension – 6 months
  • Probation
  • DUI school

Second Conviction

  • Fine – $1,000-2,000
  • Imprisonment – Maximum 9 months 
  • Ignition interlock device – At least one year
  • Community service – 50 hours
  • Driver’s License suspension – 12 months
  • Probation
  • DUI school
  • Second conviction (within five years after prior conviction)
  • Imprisonment – At least ten days
  • Impoundment of Vehicle – 30 days

Third Conviction (Within ten years after prior conviction) – Third-degree felony

  • Fine – Maximum $5,000
  • Imprisonment – Maximum 5 years
  • Ignition interlock device – At least two years
  • Community service – 50 hours
  • Driver’s License revocation – Up to 10 years
  • Hardship license ineligibility – 2 years
  • Probation
  • DUI school
  • Third or subsequent conviction (within ten years of a prior conviction)
  • Imprisonment – At least 30 days
  • Vehicle impoundment – 90 days

Third Conviction (More than ten years after prior conviction)

  • Fine – $2,000-5,000
  • Imprisonment – Maximum 12 months
  • Ignition interlock device – At least two years
  • Probation
  • DUI school

Fourth or Subsequent Conviction (Third-degree felony)

  • Fine – $2,000-5,000
  • Imprisonment – Maximum 5 years
  • Probation
  • DUI school

Aggravated Penalties

Penalties for DUI with damage to property or person (First-degree misdemeanor)

  • Fine – Maximum $1,000
  • Imprisonment – Maximum one year
  • Probation
  • DUI school

Penalties for DUI with serious bodily injury (Third-degree felony)

  • Fine – Maximum $5,000
  • Imprisonment – Maximum 5 years
  • Probation
  • DUI school

Penalties for DUI with the death of a person or unborn child (DUI manslaughter)

Second-degree felony

  • Fine – Maximum $10,000
  • Imprisonment – Maximum 15 years
  • Probation
  • DUI school

First-degree felony (Knew or should have known the crash occurred and failed to render aid)

  • Fine – Maximum $10,000
  • Imprisonment – Maximum 30 years
  • Probation
  • DUI school

Penalties for DUI with a blood-alcohol level of 0.15 or more and with underage passenger

First Conviction

  • Fine – $1,000-2,000
  • Imprisonment – Maximum 9 months
  • Ignition interlock device – At least six months
  • Probation
  • DUI school

Second Conviction

  • Fine – $2,000-4,000
  • Imprisonment – Maximum 12 months
  • Ignition interlock device – At least two years
  • Probation
  • DUI school

Third or Subsequent Conviction

  • Fine – At least $4,000
  • Probation
  • DUI school

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Implied Consent Laws

According to Florida law, a person who operates a motor vehicle within the state consents to submit to a chemical or physical test to determine whether they are intoxicated while operating the vehicle. Refusing to submit to the test is an offense and attracts the following penalties;
First Refusal

  • Fine – $500
  • License suspension – One year

Repeat Refusal (First-degree misdemeanor)

    • License suspension – 18 months
    • Fine – Maximum $1,000
    • Imprisonment – Maximum one year

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Breathalyzer Testing

If a law enforcement officer stops you or finds you in physical control of a vehicle and has a reasonable suspicion (probable cause) to believe you are driving under the influence of alcoholic beverages, an unlawful chemical substance, or a controlled substance, they may request you to perform a breath test to determine your intoxication level using blood alcohol content.
The legal blood alcohol content must be below 0.08 grams per 210 liters of breath. Otherwise, the law deems any levels above this to be capable of impairing your faculties while driving motor vehicles, making it unlawful to drive.


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How Can Hiring a DUI Lawyer Help?

THE Florida DEPARTMENT of Justice is aggressive in prosecuting DUI charges in all DUI cases

Going to trial without a DUI lawyer puts you at the mercy of prosecutors who leave no stone unturned trying to pin you down for driving under the influence using Florida statutes.

If there are other aggravating factors relating to the charges, such as property damage or bodily injury to another person, you should expect to face the personal injury attorneys representing the other parties. In this case, your chances at obtaining freedom become far slimmer and jail time is a real possibility.

Whenever you are facing criminal charges, it is always essential to hire a criminal defense lawyer to fight for your legal rights. Besides gathering evidence and representing you in court, a local attorney, in this case, a Stuart-based DUI lawyer, can prove beneficial. Since they are well conversant with the local prosecution system, they are better placed to prepare strong defense submissions based on their past experiences. But above all, a DUI lawyer understands the relevant laws, which enables them to prepare possible defenses to counter the accusations.

How A DUI lawyer can help you:

  • Examine your case and conduct investigations to gather necessary information for trial
  • Develop a strong defense strategy to minimize the chances of conviction
  • Prepare eyewitnesses and expert witnesses
  • Take full advantage of the applicable laws
  • Caution you against don’ts that might compromise your criminal case
  • Represent you in court and defend you against the charges
  • Determine the best plea for your case
  • Engage in plea bargaining with the public defender (if necessary)
  • Appeal sentencing (if it happens)
  • Expunge your record (if convicted)

In a nutshell, without a dedicated lawyer working on your DUI case, there is usually so much at stake. Thus, it is always in your best interests to get an experienced attorney to fight your criminal charges, however their magnitude. Even if they do not succeed at getting the charges dismissed or winning an acquittal, they can exploit available legal provisions to get your charges reduced or strike a plea bargain.

Ideally, a defense lawyer works aggressively to mitigate the apparent consequences and better your situation as much as possible.


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DUI Frequently Asked Questions

What are the most common DUI penalties?

DUI penalties vary depending on the severity of the offense and whether it is a first or repeat offense. Generally, a conviction almost always attracts penalties in the form of fines. You may also face jail time, community service, driver’s license suspension and enrollment in a DUI school.

Is DUI a felony offense?

DUI is a criminal offense, but it is not necessarily a felony. Mostly, first-time DUI offenses are charged as misdemeanor violations. But where there are aggravating factors such as an accident resulting in bodily injury or death, the crime is treated as a felony whether it is a first or repeat offense.

How long does a DUI offense stay on my record?

Once convicted of a DUI, it stays on your driving record for several decades. Hence, the importance of hiring experienced DUI defense lawyers to aggressively fight the charges. In Florida, the offense can stay on your driving record for up to 75 years.

Do my insurance rates go up after a DUI conviction in Stuart, FL?

Yes. Following a conviction, you are subject to higher insurance premiums for 3 years. For instance, Florida law requires you to increase your cover to at least $100,000 for bodily injury and up to $300,000 per accident, plus $50,000 for property damage.

What defenses can I use to fight my DUI?

There are several defenses you can leverage to secure a lighter sentence, request for case dismissal or fight for an acquittal in your criminal case. For instance, you could admit you were guilty of the DUI but present arguments to justify your actions or deny you did not commit the crime. Examples of previous defenses presented by an attorney from our law office include;

  • Necessity – It was necessary to drive, and you did not have an option
  • Duress – You were forced by someone to drive while drunk
  • Actual physical control – You were found maybe passed out behind the wheel but had no intention of driving
  • Entrapment – You argue a law enforcement officer/agent trapped you
  • Challenging traffic stop – There was no reason for the officer to stop you
  • Wheel witness – There is no evidence to prove you were the one driving
  • Challenging the tests – You could argue the officer did not follow the right protocols when conducting the breath or blood sample tests

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Fight Your Stuart DUI Charges With the Help of Meltzer & Bell, P.A. Lawyers

Once charged with driving under the influence, your chance at freedom or even a clean driving record depends on how well you can present your defense to counter the charges. It would be misleading to promise that we will win your case, however, hiring us comes with a solid assurance – we commit 100% to providing the best defense possible to secure a favorable outcome for you. We have represented hundreds of clients across Florida on DUI charges from Stuart, Florida to Fort Pierce, Florida to West Palm Beach, Florida, to Port Saint Lucie. So you can trust our experienced DUI lawyers. To learn your legal options for your case, contact us today for a free consultation.


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