Can you receive a DUI if your BAC is below the legal limit?

On Behalf of | Jun 6, 2019 | DUI

Summer is here and that means that people in Georgia will be going to the beach, going to parties or enjoying a much-deserved vacation. In any of these occasions, a person may have a beer or two. However, it is important to note that doing so could constitute a crime, especially if a person decides to get behind the wheel of a car while impaired.

Most people already know that if a motorist’s blood alcohol content is at 0.08 percent or higher, that motorist could be charged with driving under the influence. This is known as DUI “Per Se” and it means that, in general, no other proof of impairment is needed for prosecutors to prove the motorist was drunk. However, what Georgians may not know is that a person could receive a DUI even if their BAC was below the legal limit.

This is because, in addition to DUI “Per Se,” a person could be charged with DUI if the officer deems that the motorist was under the influence of alcohol and could not safely operate their motor vehicle. However, in this case, to be convicted of DUI the prosecution must show that the motorist had consumed alcohol and that they were driving in an unsafe manner. This is often done through results of police observations and field sobriety tests that indicate the motorist was physically or mentally impaired.

What this means is that a person could still receive a DUI even if they only had a drink or two. This may not seem fair, especially if the motorist’s BAC was below 0.08 percent. However, it is the law in Georgia. Thus, those accused of DUI or DUI “Per Se” will want to make sure they develop a solid defense strategy to avoid the harsh consequences that come with being convicted of either of these crimes.