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Boulder Colorado Law Advice Blogs

<p>Read the Boulder Colorado Law Advice blog archives of The Clark Law Firm to find out noteworthy legal news and stories in Colorado and how they affect you.</p>

Avoid a DUI with Designated Driving Services

Avoid a DUI with Designated Driving Services

By on Jan 15, 2016 in Blog, Boulder Colorado Law Advice Blogs, DUI Blogs | 0 comments

Anytime you are going out drinking, you need to plan ahead and figure out a designated driver that is sober to bring you home. The best options are to designate a friend to pick you up or choose someone going out with you to not drink, so your car isn’t left stranded. For many of us, we don’t plan ahead for a safe ride. If you find yourself with no way home at the end of the night, there are several designated driving services you can choose from. Most of these are paid and a few may be free, dependent on location and timing. Advantages of Designated Driving Services When the night is over and you find yourself drunk with no way home, do not get behind the wheel and drive. There are many services to choose from that will bring you home safely. The majority of driving services cost money, but it will cost a lot less than getting charged with a DUI. Do some research to figure out what the best option is for you based off a few factors. There are a lot of year-round companies that offer this kind of service. Each works a different way, such as them picking you up in their car and driving you home. In this case, you will need to leave the car you drove behind and pick it up another day. Some services bring your car home for you and some may even drop someone off to drive your vehicle and follow you both home. There can be several rules, dependent on where you’re located, what time of day it is, and what time of year it is. Lots of states have services specific to that state and rides may even be free if it is a holiday. Free Driving Services and Limitations Most driving services cost money, but there are a few that will offer free rides on holidays like New Year’s Eve. Companies do this to reduce the amount of drunk drivers on the road since most people are out drinking on holiday nights. There are even some non-profit businesses that offer free designated driving services all the time depending on the state. One company that...

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Driving While Under the Influence of Drugs and Marijuana

Driving While Under the Influence of Drugs and Marijuana

By on Dec 21, 2015 in Blog, Boulder Colorado Law Advice Blogs, DUI Blogs | 0 comments

  Understanding what a DUID is and everything it includes can be confusing. Driving under the influence of drugs is different than driving under the influence of alcohol. However, make sure you know what can happen to you legally once you are suspected of driving after taking drugs. The consequences for a DUID are the same as a DUI and can be just as harsh. In the state of Colorado, using marijuana and getting behind the wheel has the same serious penalties. How to Tell if You’re Under the Influence of Drugs In Colorado, police officers are trained to detect if someone is under the influence of drugs, just as they are with alcohol. Several law enforcement officers have been specifically trained as Drug Recognition Experts. If you are swerving, not stopping properly, speeding, or even driving too slowly, these are reasons for a cop to pull you over. Once the officer has stopped you, there are ways for them to reasonably assume you are under the influence of the marijuana drug. They are trained to identify psychological and behavioral signs that you may present. A few indicators include the size of your pupils and eye movements, your muscle responses, and how you speak when questioned. Marijuana can affect your hand-eye coordination, ability to concentrate, and distance perception changing your reaction time while driving. Being Pulled Over for a DUID After being pulled over and suspected of being under the influence of drugs from consuming marijuana, you will be tested for biological proof. Determining if you are actually on drugs can be trickier than figuring out if you are drunk. In many situations, you will be brought in for testing in a controlled environment. You will be given a chemical test of your blood or a urine test for the presence of drugs. Just as alcohol has a blood alcohol limit, drugs have an impairment level limit of five nanograms of active THC per milliliter of whole blood in the state of Colorado. These are the specifications for driving after you have ingested marijuana in particular, but driving under the influence of any drug is illegal. Penalties of a DUID Once you have been arrested for driving while under...

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What to Do After You Get a DUI

What to Do After You Get a DUI

By on Dec 14, 2015 in Blog, Boulder Colorado Law Advice Blogs, DUI Blogs | 0 comments

  There are several parts to getting a DUI charge after driving drunk. Depending on the situation and circumstances, the DUI conviction can be minimal or it may become more severe. You need to know what to expect before your DUI hearing, once you are brought to trial, and after your final sentencing to protect yourself. Before a DUI Hearing Getting a DUI starts when you get behind the wheel after you’ve been drinking. If a police officer has reason to pull you over and suspect you have been drinking, they can give you a roadside Breathalyzer Test. If that test comes back with a Blood Alcohol Content Level of a 0.08 percent or above, you will be arrested. Other test options are either a chemical test of your blood after arrest or a urine test. At the time of arrest, your license will be taken away by an officer. Now is time to request a Motor Vehicle Hearing, which needs to be done within 7 days of arrest in the state of Colorado. The hearing will be scheduled within 60 days and you may be granted a temporary license until then depending on the situation. Court and Trial Process If required, a court date will then be scheduled. First is an arraignment, that you may or may not be required to attend depending on the circumstances and if you have an attorney. The arraignment court date will be on your ticket. Next will be a pre-trial conference where your attorney will discuss your case with a District Attorney. This will happen around 6 weeks later and they will bargain a plea for you. This will lead to a trial in court, which will usually include a jury. The trial will be held within 6 months after a plea bargain is done. While in court, the sentencing will be decided on with several factors taken into consideration. This could result in either a misdemeanor or a felony as the worst case scenario. You may also receive a sentencing after your plea bargain, without needing a trial. Consequences after a DUI Convicted Now that a DUI conviction has been decided on from your sentencing, there are several penalties that follow....

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Multiple DUI Arrests & Its Consequences

Multiple DUI Arrests & Its Consequences

By on Nov 19, 2015 in Blog, Boulder Colorado Law Advice Blogs, DUI Blogs | 0 comments

  If you do find yourself in the situation of a first DUI or multiple DUI convictions, you need to know the consequences ahead of time so you can protect yourself. Being aware of the punishment for each DUI may help you stop Driving Under the Influence of alcohol all together because of their severity. Every time you get an additional DUI charge, the penalties get harsher, ultimately leading to a felony. Consequences After Your First DUI Having only one DUI offense on your record has the lowest level of consequences. You are considered a first time offender and the DUI is classified as a misdemeanor on your record. In most cases, your license will be revoked by the Colorado Department of Revenue. The amount of time your driver’s license could be taken away depends on the situation. Once you are arrested with your first DUI, you need to request a hearing in writing with the DMV within seven days or you will automatically lose your license for nine months to a year depending on the outcome. Other penalties you may face include two years of probation, jail time for up to one year, fines up to $1,500, and community service up to 120 hours, which are all criminal penalties. The lowest level punishment you could receive are administrative penalties with license suspension and 12 points taken off your license. What to Expect with a Second DUI On a second conviction for a DUI, the penalties will begin to get worse. After a first DUI, Colorado law has a 5 year look back period, so the judge has the option to consider you for a felony charge if your second charge happens within that 5 year period, but in most cases, you will receive a misdemeanor charge. There is also no expungement of convictions, so prior DUIs can be seen by the courts, no matter what, even if it has been sealed, it will never be taken off your record. At the second conviction, your license will be revoked for no less than one year, but this can increase dependent on how much time it’s been since your first DUI. Even though every new verdict is treated differently, in...

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What’s The Difference Between a DUI and DWAI?

What’s The Difference Between a DUI and DWAI?

By on May 26, 2015 in Blog, Boulder Colorado Law Advice Blogs, DUI Blogs | 0 comments

The Difference Between A DUI and DWAI  In the State of Colorado, there are two charges you may face if you are caught drunk driving. The first is Driving Under the Influence (DUI), and the other is Driving While Intoxicated (DWAI). So, what’s the difference? When you get pulled over under the suspicion of drunk driving, you may blow into a breathalyzer that tests the percentage of alcohol that’s inside of your bloodstream. The blood alcohol content (BAC) level result is the main criteria that differentiate a DUI from a DWAI. What Your BAC Levels Dictates For drivers over the age of 21, if you are pulled over and your BAC is between .05% and .08%, then you will be charged with a DWAI. However, if the breathalyzer shows that your BAC is .08% or higher, then you will be charged with a DUI. If you are under the drinking age, then anything above a .02% will mean a charge of either a DWAI or DUI. Compared to the rest of the country, Colorado has very unique drunk driving laws. The legal BAC limit in Colorado is .05%, which means that you can technically drink and drive as long as you’re under .05%. However, Colorado is also a no tolerance state, which means that even if you get pulled over and blow a BAC level that is lower than .05% it is up to the officer whether or not they give you a DWAI. How Much Trouble Are You In? Let’s say you get CONVICTED of a DUI or DWAI, then what are the penalties? On a first offense, a DUI can land you up to a year in jail while a DWAI can put you in jail for up to 180 days. You will be fined up to $1000 for a DUI and up to $500 for a DWAI. Further, a DUI charge will get your license suspended for 9 months but a DWAI will not receive a suspension at all. What do you do? The reality is that if you are convicted of either a DUI or a DWAI, then your life can get messy at the very least. Once charged with a DUI, you have seven...

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Burglary? Robbery? Theft? What’s The Difference?

Burglary? Robbery? Theft? What’s The Difference?

By on Oct 25, 2013 in Blog, Boulder Colorado Law Advice Blogs | 0 comments

It’s not uncommon to use these words interchangeably. How often do you hear someone talking about how his or her car was burglarized or a jewelry store was robbed in the middle of the night? While we may understand the main point of these stories, it is important to understand the differences between all three, and the difference consequences of each. Burglary A burglar can be best understood as a home or building intruder with the intent of committing a crime or felony. Note that this does not necessarily mean the suspect stole anything from you, although it is the common motive. A burglar can also break in expecting to commit murder or destroy your property. The sentences provided for a burglary case vary, depending on the state and intensity of the crime. If the offender committed a third-degree burglary, he or she can generally expect a much lower sentence than those who commit first degree. Other considerations, such as criminal history and testimonials of the offender’s character, can also affect the outcome of the case. Robbery You come home from vacation to a window opened; your heart sinks. You unlock the back door and it looks like a bomb had been dropped in your home — lamps shattered, 55” Samsung television is no where to be found, cabinets left open all over the kitchen, and the front door is wide open. Welcome to a scene of a burglary, not a robbery. Why is this not a robbery? While your things may have been stolen, no one was hurt or threatened in the act. This doesn’t mean the crime is any less severe, but the legal term for the crime committed is burglary. Robbery means you were intentionally or accidentally injured or threatened by the robber while theft was being committed. This can happen on the street or in your very home. If injury does occur, the crime will often be elevated from robbery to “aggrevated robbery.” Robbery charges are sentenced based on a number of factors, including: Presence of a deadly weapon Whether there was a murder involved or attempted Premises robbed The most serious type of robbery is a bank robbery. While most robbery cases fall under...

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