DUI Defense Lawyer in Richmond, VA

Experience Defending Against DUI Charges in Richmond County

Have you been arrested and charged with drunk driving in Richmond, VA? Your liberty, your livelihood, and your future are all on the line. Whatever the circumstances of your arrest, a skilled Richmond DUI attorney can fight to get your charges reduced or dismissed or win acquittal at trial. However, not all attorneys have the same criminal defense experience. Let The Law Office of Paul C. Galanides, P.C. show you the difference.

    Are you facing a DUI charge? Call The Law Office of Paul C. Galanides, P.C. today at (804) 977-0110 or contact us online to schedule a meeting with our drunk driving attorney in Richmond, VA.

    What Can a DUI Lawyer Do For You?

    A DUI lawyer specializes in handling cases related to drunk driving offenses. They can provide several services and support throughout the legal process. Here are some of the benefits a DUI lawyer can provide for you:

    1. Legal Advice: They can explain the laws related to drunk driving in Virginia and advise you on the best course of action based on your specific situation. They can help you understand the possible consequences and advise you through the legal process.
    2. Case Evaluation: They can review the details of your case, which includes police reports, witness statements, and any other available evidence. They will assess the strength of the prosecution's case that is being held against you and identify any potential weaknesses or errors that could be challenged.
    3. Defense Strategy: Based on their evaluation, they will help develop a defense strategy tailored to your case. They could challenge the legality of the traffic stop, the field sobriety tests accuracy or breathalyzer results, or other procedural issues that could possibly weaken the prosecution's case.
    4. Plea Bargaining: In some cases, they can negotiate with the prosecution to acquire a plea bargain that reduces the charges or penalties.
    5. Court Representation: If your case goes to trial, they can represent you in court. They will present your defense, cross-examine witnesses, challenge evidence, and make compelling arguments to support your case.
    6. Administrative Proceedings: DUI charges often involve administrative proceedings, including the revocation or suspension of your driver's license. They can help you navigate these proceedings, represent you in administrative hearings, and possibly work towards a license reinstatement or receiving a restricted license.
    7. Knowledge and Experience: DUI lawyers specialize in this area of law and have extensive knowledge and experience dealing with these types of cases. They stay updated on the latest laws, regulations, and legal strategies related to DUI offenses, which can be invaluable in building a strong defense.

    Why Choose Us?

    • Attorney Paul C. Galanides at the Law Office of Paul C. Galanides, P.C. is one of the most experienced and well-equipped DUI lawyers in Richmond.
    • For 27 years, his clients have relied on his zealousness for the truth, his unmatched research and investigative skills, and his unwillingness to let his clients fail.
    • As a prosecutor, Attorney Galanides attended a weeklong intensive Advanced DUI Training for Prosecutors and Police, with a select group of law-enforcement officers and fellow prosecutors.
    • Mr. Galanides has experience on 'both' sides of the courtroom, allowing him to craft defenses that challenge the state's case and get his clients the results they need.

    What is the Legal Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) Limit for Driving in Virginia?

    In Virginia, the legal blood alcohol content (BAC) limit for driving is 0.08%. This means that if a driver's BAC is 0.08% or higher, they can be charged with driving under the influence (DUI).

    • It's important to note that for drivers under the age of 21, Virginia has a zero-tolerance policy for drinking and driving. This means that if a driver under the age of 21 has any measurable amount of alcohol in their system while operating a motor vehicle, they can be charged with DUI.
    • Additionally, for commercial drivers, the legal BAC limit is 0.04%. This means that if a commercial driver's BAC is 0.04% or higher, they can be charged with DUI.

    It's essential to understand that driving under the influence of drugs, including prescription medication and illegal substances, is also illegal in Virginia and can result in DUI charges.

    What are the Penalties for a DUI in Virginia?

    Driving with a beer bottle in hand

    DUI penalties in Richmond are steep and they only get steeper if you become a repeat offender. Fighting every charge could help get your charges dismissed, either by attacking the prosecutor's case or proving that your rights were violated during the arrest.

    Presenting a strong case could at the very least help reduce your charges, keeping you from paying heavy fines and serving time.

    The penalties for a DUI in Virginia include:

    • Up to 12 months in jail for first offense
    • Mandatory jail time for second or subsequent offenses
    • Mandatory jail time for an Elevated BAC
    • Up to $2,500 in fines
    • License revocation

    Is a DUI a Felony in Virginia?

    In Virginia, a DUI can be classified as a felony under certain circumstances. Virginia has different levels of DUI offenses based on factors such as the driver's blood alcohol concentration, prior convictions, and the presence of aggravating factors. Here's a general breakdown:

    1. First and second DUI offenses: In general, a first or second DUI offense within a 10-year period is considered a misdemeanor in Virginia.
    2. Third or subsequent DUI offenses: If an individual is convicted of a third DUI offense within a 10-year period, it is generally considered a Class 6 felony in Virginia.
    3. DUI offenses with additional aggravating factors: Certain circumstances can heighten a DUI offense to a felony, even for first or second offenses. A prior felony DUI conviction or causing injury or death while driving under the influence are examples of aggravating factors.

    How Do You Get a DUI Dismissed in Virginia?

    To get a DUI dismissed in Virginia, you can challenge the following aspects of your arrest:

    • Challenge the Reason for the Stop: If the officer did not see you commit any violations nor any crime, produce any evidence the case will be dismissed.
    • Operation of the Car: If there was an accident, and you weren’t in the vehicle when they got there, they have to prove you were the driver. It doesn’t matter if you were drunk if they can’t prove you were driving the car. There must be a witness to you operating the vehicle.
    • Challenge Police Procedures: Did the officer properly give you your Miranda rights? This usually won’t get a case dismissed, but we may be able to get certain admissions or other incriminating statements excluded from evidence depending on if and when the police arrested and Mirandized you.
    • Challenge Prosecutor Procedures: Ifthey did not properly notify the defense of all evidence they intended to present at trial it must be excluded.
    • Challenge the Breath Test Machine or Other Devices: Breathalyzers and other machines can create false positives based on radio frequency interference, a person’s diet, medical conditions (acid reflux), and other failed testing procedures.

    How Long Does a DUI Affect Your Insurance in Virginia?

    A DUI may even affect your insurance for a decade before car insurance companies may offer a regular insurance rate or “safe driver” discount. Drivers may need a certificate of financial responsibility (FR-44) for three to four years after a DUI, depending on the license reinstatement.

    The Virginia DMVs will show a DUI going back for a period of eleven years. Any insurance provider may issue higher rate quotes because of a prior DUI, even if it occurred years ago.

    FR44 Insurance Requirements in VA

    You might still need FR-44 insurance even if you do not own a vehicle. FR-44 coverage is generally required after a DUI if you have a Virginia driver's license. Even if you don't have a car, your license may be suspended because of a DUI or DWI. In order to get your driving privileges back, you will have to get a “non-owner FR-44 certificate.”

      How The Law Office of Paul C. Galanides, P.C. Can Help

      Given the consequences you might be facing, this is no time to go hunting for a “bargain” lawyer. Quality representation is always worth the price. The Law Office of Paul C. Galanides, P.C. builds cases by partnering with our clients to develop their most effective defenses.

      As a former public defender and seasoned prosecutor, Attorney Paul C. Galanides is equipped to anticipate the state's case against you, crafting a defense that is tailored to your specific situation.

      Contact the Law Office of Paul C. Galanides, P.C. today for a free initial consultation with our experienced Richmond, VA DUI lawyer!


      “I'm inspired to fight for the rights our constitution guarantees us, and to attempt to truly make a difference.”

      - Paul C. Galanides
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