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Springdale DWI Attorneys

Fighting Driving While Intoxicated Charges

Being charged with driving while intoxicated (DWI) in Springdale can lead to several immediate and long-term consequences. Even after merely being arrested for the offense, you can be subject to a driver's license suspension. If you are convicted, you can face jail or prison time and/or fines – whether this is your first offense or you have previous violations on your record. These sanctions can negatively impact your life. For instance, if you lose your driving privileges, you may not be able to take care of daily tasks or get to work or school. Additionally, if you are found guilty of DWI, you will have a mark on your criminal record that is accessible to the public and can hurt your chances of qualifying for certain opportunities, such as a coveted job.

If you are facing driving while intoxicated charges, reach out to Norwood & Norwood, P.A. as soon as possible. Simply being accused of the offense does not mean you are guilty, and it is important to have one of our experienced and knowledgeable Springdale DWI/DUI lawyers on your side to aggressively fight your charge. Collectively, our team has handled more than 10,000 DWI cases and knows what it takes to seek favorable results. We also have unique insight into how the opposition works, as members of the firm have served as former prosecutors. We are well-equipped to take on your case.

Schedule a free visit by calling us at (479) 235-4600 or contacting us online today.

What Constitutes a DWI in Arkansas?

In Arkansas, it is illegal to operate or be in physical control of a vehicle while intoxicated (A.C.A. § 5-65-103). There are two circumstances in which a person can face this charge. One way is if they have a blood or breath alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08 or higher.

The other way to face a DWI charge is to be intoxicated while driving. That means that a person's normal faculties are affected by alcohol, an intoxicant, and/or a controlled substance. In other words, if any of these substances impairs someone's ability to drive safely and they put themselves or others at risk of harm, they may be considered intoxicated.

Driving while intoxicated cases typically hinge on the arresting officer's observations and/or the driver's BAC as measured by a chemical test. However, these types of evidence are not 100% reliable all the time. Factors such as health conditions, clothing, environment, and fatigue can affect someone's driving behavior, and improper procedures can distort the results of a chemical analysis.

At Norwood & Norwood, P.A., our DWI attorneys in Springdale are familiar with the science and laws behind these matters. We know that many issues can lead to an innocent person being accused of a violation. That is why we fully investigate and review these cases to uncover the truth. Contact us today to discuss the events leading up to your arrest and learn about options we can explore to attack the allegations against you.

Arkansas DWI Penalties

In Arkansas, first, second, and third DWI violations are misdemeanors, whereas fourth or following offenses are felonies. The length of jail or prison time and amount of fine vary depending on the driver's criminal history.

Below are the charges and conviction penalties imposed in an Arkansas DWI case:

  • First offense:
    • Unclassified misdemeanor
    • 24 hours to 1 year in jail and/or
    • $150 to $1,000 in fines
  • Second offense (within 10 years of the first):
    • Unclassified misdemeanor
    • 7 days to 1 year in jail and/or
    • $400 to $3,000 in fines
  • Third offense (within 10 years of the first):
    • Unclassified misdemeanor
    • 90 days to 1 year in jail and/or
    • $900 to $5,000 in fines
  • Fourth offense (within 10 years of the first):
    • Unclassified felony
    • 1 to 6 years in prison and/or
    • $900 to $5,000 in fines
  • Fifth or subsequent offense (within 10 years of the first):
    • Unclassified felony
    • 2 to 10 years in prison and/or
    • $900 to $5,000 in fines
  • Sixth or subsequent offense (within 20 years of the first):
    • Class B felony
    • 5 to 20 years in prison and/or
    • Up to $15,000 in fines

It can be frightening and overwhelming to be charged with driving while intoxicated, especially when facing serious consequences as those listed above. But do not lose hope in your case. You can seek to minimize or avoid penalties by aggressively challenging the accusations. Our Springdale DWI lawyers are ready to work toward obtaining a favorable outcome on your behalf.

Can I Lose My Driver's License in an Arkansas DWI Case?

If you are arrested for driving while intoxicated, you could lose your driver's license. Note that this loss of driving privileges does not occur only if you have been convicted. It is a sanction that can be imposed even before your case concludes and can happen in two ways.

First, you could lose your driver's license if you are arrested for operating or being in physical control of a vehicle while intoxicated or with a BAC of 0.08 or more. You are required to surrender your license to the officer upon arrest, and they will issue a temporary one valid for 30 days.

In this first situation, your driver's license may be suspended or revoked for the following periods:

  • First offense: 6-month suspension
  • Second offense (within 5 years of the first): 24-month suspension
  • Third offense (within 5 years of the first): 30-month suspension
  • Fourth or subsequent offense (within 5 years of the first): Lifetime revocation

The second way you could lose your driving privileges is if you refuse a chemical test. Under A.C.A. § 5-65-205, anyone lawfully arrested for DWI must submit to a chemical test to determine the presence or level of drugs and/or alcohol in their system. Technically, you can refuse to be subject to the chemical test but doing so is not without consequence.

Chemical test refusal can result in driver's license suspension or revocation as follows:

  • First offense: 180-day suspension
  • Second offense (within 5 years of the first): 2-year suspension
  • Third offense (within 5 years of the first): 3-year revocation
  • Fourth offense (within 5 years of the first): Lifetime revocation

If you are facing an administrative suspension or revocation of your driver's license, you have seven days to request a hearing. At the hearing, you can challenge this action and seek to keep your driving privileges. Contact our DWI attorneys in Springdale about fighting to protect your driver's license.

Arkansas Underage DUI

Although any person, regardless of age, can be charged with a DWI when they are intoxicated or have a BAC of 0.08 or higher, those younger than 21 years of age can face charges even if they had a lower BAC or were not intoxicated. Referred to as driving under the influence while underage, an offense occurs when someone below the legal drinking age operates a vehicle with essentially any amount of alcohol in their system.

One of the key differences between a DWI and an underage DUI is the level of impairment. Whereas a driver is considered intoxicated when their normal faculties are substantially altered, an underage person is considered under the influence when their motor skills and judgment are affected even slightly.

The other distinction between a DWI and an underage DUI is the BAC level that constitutes an offense. A driver can face a DWI charge when their BAC is at 0.08 or higher. For an underage person, that number is much lower. An underage DUI charge can be levied when the driver's BAC is 0.02 or higher but less than 0.08.

An underage person may face different charges for driving under the influence, but they must still go through a court process to challenge the allegations. If you or your child has been accused of an underage DUI in Springdale, reach out to Norwood & Norwood, P.A. for your defense.

Arkansas Underage DUI Conviction Penalties

The punishments an underage person can face for driving under the influence are harsh and can greatly affect their future. An underage DUI is an unclassified misdemeanor, and while a conviction may not result in a jail term, it can lead to other penalties.

Possible punishments include:

  • First offense:
    • $100 to $500 in fines
  • Second offense:
    • $200 to $1,000 in fines
    • 30 days of public service work
  • Third or subsequent offense:
    • $500 to $2,000 in fines
    • 60 days of public service work

Fines and completion of public service work are not the only penalties an underage person can face for a DUI. They may also be subject to an administrative driver's license suspension. As with a regular DWI, this loss of driving privileges can happen in two ways (although the suspension/revocation period lengths differ).

If the driver was under the influence or had a BAC of 0.02 or higher, they can lose their driver's license as follows:

  • First offense: 90-day suspension
  • Second offense: 1-year suspension
  • Third or subsequent offense: 3-year revocation or revocation until the driver reaches 21 years of age (whichever is later)

Underage persons are also subject to implied consent laws. Meaning if they are lawfully arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence, they have agreed to take a chemical test. They can refuse the test, but they will face sanctions for doing so.

If the driver refused a chemical test, they might be subject to the following suspension or revocation periods:

  • First offense: 90-day suspension
  • Second offense: 1-year suspension
  • Third or subsequent offense: 3-year revocation or revocation until the driver reaches 21 years of age (whichever is later)

If the driver did not have a driver's license at the time of the offense, their eligibility to obtain a permit or license will be suspended.

Their application will be denied for the following periods:

  • First offense: 6 months
  • Second offense: 1 year

The penalties for an underage DUI conviction in Springdale can affect many parts of your life. For the legal representation you need to fight your charge, reach out to our DWI lawyers today!

Can a DWI Conviction Be Expunged?

Expungement is the process of removing conviction information from your criminal record. It provides relief from challenges you can face for being found guilty of a drunk driving offense.

If you were convicted of anything other than a Class B felony DWI offense, you might be able to have it expunged. You can seek relief 5 years after you have completed your sentence, including paying all fines and finishing probationary terms.

At Norwood & Norwood, P.A., our Springdale DWI lawyers want to help you seek to have your record cleared. Please call us to discuss your legal options.

Accused of DWI in Springdale? We Can Help.

The DWI court process is complex and requires a thorough understanding of the law. Fortunately, you do not have to go through the justice system alone. You can have a skilled attorney on your side, and our team is ready to stand by you throughout your case.

To discuss your case with an experienced Springdale DWI attorney, call us at (479) 235-4600 or contact us online today.

We Can Help You! 

6 Reasons to Choose Us
  • Nearly 100 Years of Combined Experience
  • More than 25,000 Charges Won or Dismissed
  • Highly Respected by Peers, Judges and Clients
  • Former Prosecutors Who Understand Both Sides of the Law
  • Affordable Payment Plans
  • Your First Visit is Absolutely Free
Meet Attorney Doug Norwood

Attorney Doug Norwood has over 30 years of experience helping clients throughout Northwest Arkansas. He and his team can review your case and determine your available legal options to help you avoid serious criminal penalties.

What Our Clients Have to Say

    Felony Case Dismissed!

    “FELONY CASE DISMISSED! I was charged with Possession of a Firearm, Theft by Receiving and Possession of Drug Paraphernalia....The attorneys were able to prove my case to the Prosecutor and as a result all 3 charges were DISMISSED!!!!”

    - Jack
    CHARGED WITH A DWI AND THEY GOT IT DROPPED!

    “CHARGED WITH A DWI AND THEY GOT IT DROPPED! I was initially charged with a DWI and they got it dropped! Norwood & Norwood was great, they acted with great honesty and integrity.”

    - Mike
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    “I WOULD GIVE 10 STARS IF I COULD!!!! I met with Doug and he Made me feel much better about my drug charge. I am so glad I hired him. Norwood got my DRUG CHARGE DISMISSED and I couldn’t be more grateful.”

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    “Drug Crime DISMISSED! From the moment I walked in I could tell I made the right decision. After picking up a drug charge Norwood helped me with my case allowing the charge to be dropped and expounged! Best Lawyer group in NWA.”

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    “Norwood got my Domestic Battery DISMISSED. I have never been so happy. I was so scared I was shaking because I thought I was going to jail. When I heard my attorneys got my charge dismissed, no money, no court I was overjoyed.”

    - Taylor
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