Drink driving lawyers in NSW & the ACT
Drink driving is the most common criminal offence faced by Australians. It is also an offence that is often committed by people who are otherwise of excellent character.
Charged with driving under the influence in NSW or the ACT? Our drink driving lawyers in Canberra and Queanbeyan have been representing clients in court for decades and will help you to determine the best path forward.
We understand that this offence can be overwhelming, especially if it is your first experience of the criminal law system. Aside from the stress of being charged by police and having to attend court, the criminal penalties for drink driving can be very severe and as such, legal representation is usually recommended.
If you wish to discuss your options with a responsive and reliable solicitor, please contact BDN Lawyers today. We are here to guide you through the entire legal process with professional support and genuine advice.
Our experienced drink driving lawyers will:
- Carefully consider the circumstances, facts and evidence surrounding the charge;
- Advise whether you should plead guilty or not guilty;
- Advise you of the potential penalties and likely outcome;
- Assist you in preparing supporting documents and reference material for your court date;
- Prepare a restricted licence application (if applicable); and
- Prepare submissions and present your case to the presiding Magistrate and prosecutors on your behalf.
Yes. Drink driving is classified as a criminal offence and will therefore be included on your police record if you are convicted.
However, in some exceptional cases, the magistrate can elect to make a ‘non-conviction’ order so even if you have pleaded guilty to the crime, a conviction will not be recorded.
Contact one of our experienced lawyers today to discuss your prospects of a non-conviction order.
The penalties for driving under the influence in Australia vary depending on the range of the offence, and on the state or territory in which the offence occurred. Such penalties include fines, licence disqualification, an order for the installation of an alcohol interlock device, and in some extreme cases, imprisonment.
If you are a first time offender, it is likely your penalty will involve a fine and period of licence disqualification. The risk of a term of imprisonment becomes greater if you have a history of DUI offences, caused injury to others or damaged property as a result of driving drunk.
In some cases where there are exceptional mitigating circumstances, an offender can avoid incurring any penalty for drink driving if the magistrate is persuaded to make a non-conviction order.
Our lawyers are highly experienced in making submissions to reduce the harshness of drink driving penalties. Contact us today to receive reliable advice tailored to your unique circumstances.
While you are able to represent yourself in court if you choose, it is are strong recommendation that if you have been charged with a drink driving offence, you should seek the support of an experienced lawyer immediately. The penalties for drink driving charges can be very severe, making it vitally important to obtain legal advice and representation before your court date.
A highly-experienced drink driving lawyer who understands how to navigate the complex legalities of this offence will help you to secure the best outcome possible in your unique circumstances. Not only will our lawyers appear on your behalf at court and make submissions in mitigation of your penalty, we will also guide and support you through the highly stressful experience of being charged with an offence.
Please don’t put your future on the line. Contact our drink driving lawyers today for support with your case.
The cost of a lawyer for a drink driving offence depends on the nature of the plea, the complexity of the case and the duration of the trial.
If you plan to plead guilty to a drink driving charge, BDN Lawyers will provide you with a simple fixed-fee quote. If you wish to defend a charge, then BDN Lawyers will provide a quote considering:
- The number of charges;
- The amount of evidence;
- The number of anticipated court attendances;
- The anticipated duration of the trial; and
- Whether a barrister is to be instructed.
If you have been charged with a drink driving offence in the ACT and you have an ACT licence, it may be possible to apply for a restricted licence that will allow you to continue driving for specific, limited purposes. Examples include transport to and from work.
You can apply for a restricted licence if:
- The drink driving offence occurred in the ACT;
- You live in the ACT;
- It is your first drink driving offence; and
- You hold a full licence and your blood alcohol level was not greater than 0.099g OR you are a special licence holder and your blood alcohol concentration was not greater than 0.049g.
Unfortunately, restricted licences are not available to NSW drivers.
Learn more about restricted licence eligibility in the ACT.
Both the ACT and NSW jurisdictions have provisions to find a person guilty of an offence, but to not record a conviction. In the context of drink driving, this outcome allows you to keep your driver’s licence.
However, this outcome is usually reserved for people who:
- Have been driving for a significant period of time;
- Have a perfect or near perfect driving record; and
- Will suffer an inordinate burden due to a loss of licence, for example on their capacity to work or ability to care for an ill family member etc.
For personalised advice on non-conviction orders for drink driving, please contact our lawyers today.
Both the ACT and NSW have provisions for mandatory interlock programs for offenders deemed to be higher risk. This means that if you are convicted, once you have served a period of licence disqualification, you may also be required to have an interlock system fitted to your vehicle for a period of time to demonstrate safe driving behaviour. Depending on the charge you may also be required to participate in treatment or training programs as ordered by a Magistrate.
Lower risk drink driving offenders in the ACT also have the option of voluntarily participating in the interlock program during their driving disqualification period, which allows them to continue driving despite their disqualification. However, they will also be required to demonstrate a period of clean driving before they can exit the interlock program.
The laws in NSW and the ACT in relation to their respective interlock programs are complex, especially for offenders who hold a driver’s licence issued by a different jurisdiction to where the offence took place.
We recommend that you obtain legal advice in respect to your options and whether you may be subject to a mandatory interlock order prior to your matter being dealt with.
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