Minnesota DWI/DUI Frequently Asked Questions
My family member was stopped for suspicion of DWI or DUI, what do we do?
If you received a late night phone call from a loved one who has been arrested for DWI in Minnesota, contact a DWI lawyer immediately. The DWI lawyers at Olson Defense answer their phones 24 hours a day and will be there to answer your call and assist your family member. When you receive a call from your loved one, make sure you ask where they are calling from, and make sure you get a phone number they can be reached at and finally advise them you are contacting an attorney for them and/or provide them with our contact information. It is very important that they receive proper advice before deciding whether to take or refuse a breath test. The advice they are given and the decision they make could make all the difference in their case. Don't wait until it is too late. Contact the lawyers of Olson Defense, at (952) 835-1088, the moment you or your family member are in need of legal advice.
My family member has been arrested and is in Jail can he or she get out?
Depending on the charge, the police can keep you or your loved one in jail for a number of days. If they have a prior DWI conviction, they refuse to take the breath test, or even if this is their first DWI but the blow over .16 they might be detained and subjected to mandatory bail. A lawyer has the right to visit you in jail and help with your release over the weekend. Olson Defense has the knowledge and experience to help get bail set for you or your loved one and may even be able to have them released early. This means that you may have the opportunity to post bail and have your loved one released from custody. If your loved one is in jail, contact Olson Defense at (952) 835-1088 for assistance with getting them released.
What if the officer did not read me my Miranda rights?
Most people are familiar with Miranda rights as a result of watching television shows like Law & Order. However, many people are unfamiliar with when Miranda warnings are actually required and what happens if an officer fails to provide the appropriate warnings. An officer is required to provide Miranda warnings prior to engaging in custodial interrogation. This means that whether the warnings must be provided depends on whether a suspect is in custody and whether they are being interrogated.
Whether a person is in custody depends on whether law enforcement has limited a person's freedom in a significant way. For example, someone who has been formally arrested, or is being detained at a police station, is clearly in custody. Other situations are not as clear-cut and will be determined on a case-by-case basis, based upon the totality of the circumstances.
Interrogation is defined as express questioning, or its functional equivalent, designed to elicit an incriminating response. For example, “Is this your marijuana” is clearly a question designed to elicit an incriminating response, and as a result is interrogation. However, basic questions about your name and address are usually not considered interrogation because they do not seek an incriminating response.
Now that we have determined that Miranda warnings are only required when someone is in custody and subjected to interrogation, let's examine what happens if an officer does not give the warnings when required. If an officer was supposed to advise you of your Miranda rights, and did not, then the statements you make are not admissible as evidence against you. This means that the government cannot use your unwarned statements to try to convict you of an offense. An officer's failure to advise you of your Miranda rights does not necessarily mean your case will be dismissed. In fact, in most DWI cases, Miranda warnings are not required. Olson Defense has the knowledge and experience to tackle complex legal issues like Miranda warnings. If you have been are being questioned or have been questioned by police, contact Olson Defense at (952) 835-1088 to protect your legal rights.
Do I have to answer the questions the police ask me?
It depends. Generally, if you are asked to identify yourself to an officer by giving your name and birthdate, you should do so. If you do not, the officer may detain you until they are able to positively identify you. However, when police begin to ask about your knowledge or involvement in criminal activity, you are not required to answer their questions. Police will frequently tell suspects that they are only asking questions to clear up a situation or figure out what is going on. In reality, the police are fishing for information to help build a case against you. If the police wish to question you, contact the lawyers of Olson Defense at (952) 835-1088 to protect your legal rights.
Was I stopped legally?
Police are allowed to pull you over when they have reasonable and articulable suspicion that you have violated a traffic law and/or an equipment violation. This is most commonly established through observation of a traffic violation. For example, speeding, driving without headlights, failure to signal a lane change or turn, and swerving all commonly provide police with reasonable suspicion to stop a vehicle. The lawyers at Olson Defense have successfully challenged many traffic stops and obtained dismissal of their client's DWI and Drug charges. If you feel that you may have been illegally stopped, contact Olson Defense at (952) 835-1088 to fight for your rights.
What are Field Sobriety Tests?
Common field sobriety tests include the Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus, the walk and turn, and the one leg stand. The Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus, or HGN test, involves a person following an officer's finger or pen with their eyes. The walk and turn involves walking a series of steps in a straight line, turning around, and walking a straight line back to their starting position. The one leg stand test involves standing on one foot and counting while maintaining balance. You are not legally required to perform field sobriety tests. Officers will frequently tell a suspect that they are only conducting the tests to ensure someone is ok to drive. In reality, the officer is looking for evidence of impairment to strengthen the government's case against you and increase the likelihood of a DWI conviction. If an officer is asking you to perform tests, contact Olson Defense at (952) 835-1088 to protect your rights.
Do I have to do the field sobriety tests?
No, you do not have to do any of the field sobriety tests. Officers commonly suggest that they are going to let you go home, but just want to have you do some tests to ensure you are ok to drive. However, the reality is that they want to watch you perform poorly on these tests so that they can gather evidence of your impairment and arrest you for DWI. They are also trying to gather evidence to increase the state's chances of convicting you of a DWI offense and subjecting you to severe criminal and civil consequences. If an officer has asked you to perform field sobriety tests, call Olson Defense at (952) 835-1088 to protect your legal rights.
What is a preliminary breath test/PBT and do I need to take it?
A preliminary breath test, or PBT, involves blowing into a small handheld device to determine a suspect's approximate blood alcohol content. This test is also sometimes called a breathalyzer. A PBT test is typically given on the side of the road after a person has been pulled over and taken field sobriety tests. You are not legally required to take a preliminary breath test. However, an officer has typically already developed enough evidence to arrest a suspect before asking you to take a preliminary breath test. If law enforcement has requested that you take a preliminary breath test, call Olson Defense at (952) 835-1088 to protect your legal rights.
Why did the officer ask me to do two different breath tests?
The reason you are asked to take two separate tests is because the preliminary breath test (PBT) you were asked to take on the roadside is to determine if they have sufficient evidence to arrest you. This test is not admissible as evidence against you in your criminal trial with the exception of limited sets of circumstances. Once you are arrested, you may be asked to take a second breath test on the Datamaster machine at the police station or jail. The Datamaster is the breath test to determine if you were legally over the limit and can be used by the State in your prosecution. You cannot be charged with a crime for refusing to take a PBT but you can be charged with the crime of Test Refusal, if you refuse to take the breath test on the Datamaster. If you have been asked to perform a chemical breath test, contact the lawyers of Olson Defense at (952) 835-1088 to discuss your legal rights.
What is the Minnesota Implied Consent Advisory?
If you have been arrested for suspicion of DWI in Minnesota the police are required by law to read you an Implied Consent Advisory. This advisory informs you that the officer has reason to believe you were operating your car while under the influence of alcohol, that he or she is going to ask you to take a breath test, and that before making a decision you have the right to contact an attorney. If you elect to speak to an attorney, and you should, the officer must provide you with a reasonable amount of time to contact one before asking you to submit to a test. If you have been asked to take a breath test, or the officer did not read you the implied consent advisory, contact Olson Defense at (952) 835-1088 right away to protect your rights.
Can the police ask for Blood or a Urine test?
Generally, in order to obtain a blood or urine sample, law enforcement must first obtain a search warrant. No warrant is required in order to obtain a breath sample. If an officer asks you to take a breath test, or obtains a search warrant to obtain a blood or urine sample, refusal to do so is a crime, punished similarly to DWI. However, sometimes the consequences of a refusal are more severe than those for a DWI. Conversely, sometimes the consequences for having a test over .16 are more severe than those for refusing to test. If you are arrested and have been asked to take a chemical test, contact the lawyers of Olson Defense for advice on how to protect your legal rights.
Why didn't I get to pick what kind of test I wanted to do?
An officer may request a test of a suspect's breath, blood, or urine. In order to obtain a sample of your blood or urine, an officer must first obtain a search warrant. A warrant is not required in order to obtain a sample of a your breath. An officer is not required to give you a choice of which type of test to take. However, after completing the test offered, you can obtain your own independent test at your own expense. If you find yourself in a situation where you are faced with a chemical test, or the officer did not allow you to obtain your own secondary test, contact the lawyers of Olson Defense to discuss your legal options.
What did I blow, and what does it mean?
Under Minnesota law, it is illegal to operate or be in actual physical control of a motor vehicle with a blood alcohol content, or BAC, of .08 or greater. If you blow between a .08 and .15, and it is your first offense, you will likely be charged with fourth-degree misdemeanor DWI. If your test result is .16 or greater, that will be considered an aggravating factor and the charge will become a third-degree gross misdemeanor DWI. If there are other aggravating present, a charge will become even more severe.
It is important to note that if you are operating a commercial motor vehicle, the legal limit is lowered from .08 to .04. This means that you could be charged with a DWI even with a blood alcohol content of less than .08. The lawyers of Olson Defense have experience defending all types of DWIs based on all manner of test results. If you have been, or believe you will be charged with DWI, contact Olson Defense right away to ensure that all of your legal rights are protected.
What is test refusal and why am I being charged with it?
There a typically three different situations where a person will be charged with test refusal. After being placed under arrest, taken to a jail or police station, read the implied consent advisory, and given the opportunity to speak with an attorney, you will be asked to take a test to determine your blood alcohol content. One way that someone finds themselves charged with refusal is when they simply tell the officer that they will not take the test. Another way to be charged with refusal is to agree to take the test, but then, either in an attempt to fool the machine, or due to inability, the person does not blow enough air into the machine. The third way someone is charged with refusal is through refusal by conduct. Refusal by conduct is when someone simply refuses to answer when questioned whether they will take the test or does not blow any air into the machine when asked to start blowing. Olson Defense has vast experience dealing with all manner of test refusal and testing issues. If you have been charged with test refusal, contact Olson Defense right away, at (952) 835-1088 to protect your legal rights.
Why does my ticket say I have 2 charges?
Your ticket likely says you have been charged with two offenses because you are being charged under two different sections of Minnesota's DWI law, Minn. Stat. 169A.20. One section makes it a crime to operate a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol. Whether you are under the influence is determined by your driving conduct, appearance, whether the officer detected an odor of alcohol, whether you admitted to consuming alcohol, performance on field sobriety tests, and the results of the preliminary breath test. Another section makes it a crime to operate a motor vehicle with a blood alcohol content of .08 or more. If you have been charged with these offenses, contact Olson Defense at (952) 835-1088 to obtain the best possible outcome in your case.
What if I have a prior DWI in Minnesota?
DWIs are enhanceable, meaning if you have a prior DWI conviction, it can make the next one more serious. The lowest level of DWI offense in Minnesota is a fourth-degree misdemeanor level offense. A person is charged with a fourth-degree DWI when there are no aggravating factors present. If there is one aggravating factor present, a person will be charged with third-degree DWI, which is a gross misdemeanor level offense. If two or more aggravating factors are present, a person will be charged with second-degree DWI, which is a gross misdemeanor level offense. Finally, if a person has a four or more DWI offenses in a 10 year period, they will be charged with felony first-degree DWI.
Aggravating factors include having a DWI offense in the 10 years preceding the current offense, having a test result of .16 or greater, and having a child 16 years or younger in the vehicle if the driver is at least 3 years older than the child. Aggravating factors can be combined in any manner to enhance a DWI offense.
What happens if I have a prior DUI in another state and have been arrested for a DWI in Minnesota?
In Minnesota, DWI offenses are enhanceable offenses. This means that previous DUI or DWI offenses can be used to enhance the severity of a new DWI charge. It does not matter in what state the previous offense occurred, it can be used to enhance a new charge in Minnesota. A new charge could carry mandatory jail time, a lengthy revocation of your driver's license, impoundment of your vehicle's license plates, vehicle forfeiture, and expensive fines. If you have a previous DUI or DWI and have been charged with a DWI in Minnesota, contact the lawyers of Olson Defense at (952) 835-1088 for a free consultation.
Can I be charged with DWI or DUI in Minnesota if am not driving?
Under Minnesota law you can be charged with being in actual physical control of a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol. This means that if you go out to your car to sleep it off after an evening of drinking, you can still be charged with a DWI offense. Driving and even turning the vehicle on are not necessary. Olson Defense has years of experience defending against actual physical control charges. Call the lawyers of Olson Defense at (952) 835-1088 if you have been charged with being in actual physical control.
How long will my DWI stay on my record?
Under Minnesota law, DWI offenses are enhanceable. This means that offenses in the past 10 years can be used to make a new charge more severe. For this reason, it is difficult to get a DWI conviction expunged from your record until at least 10 years have passed. A DWI conviction will remain on your record for the rest of your life unless you successfully petition the court for expungement. If you have a DWI conviction you want expunged from your record, contact the lawyers of Olson Defense for a free consultation to discuss your options.
Why was I charged with DWI when I was not drinking?
Minnesota law allows for someone to be charged with a DWI if they are under the influence of a controlled substance. No alcohol is required. This means that someone could be charged with DWI for driving while on prescription or illicit drugs. Those with a prescription from a doctor may have a defense to a DWI charge. Olson Defense has years of experience defending against DWIs where controlled substances were involved. If you have been charged with driving while under the influence of a controlled substance, contact Olson Defense at (952) 835-1088 to fight for you.
What will happen with my driver's license?
If you are charged with a DWI or DUI, you will receive a notice of license revocation and it will inform you that your license will be revoked seven (7) days from the date of the incident. Therefore, you will be able to drive for 7 days after the incident but your driving privileges will then be revoked. Yes, that is right, driving in Minnesota is a privilege and they will take your driver license from you before you can even get into court to challenge your DWI.
The revocation period will vary depending on how high your test is, first time DWIs under .16 will be up to 90 days, if you have a prior DWI offense or a test result over .16, or have children in the car, it can be up to one year or require you to install ignition interlock in your car. When you are arrested for DWI, you only have 60 days to challenge the revocation of your driver's license. Olson Defense has years of experience challenging license revocations. We may even be able to temporarily reinstate your license while your case is pending. If you have received a notice of revocation, contact Olson Defense to protect your driver's license.
What will happen to my driver's license from another state if I got a DWI in Minnesota?
If you are convicted of a DWI in Minnesota or have your license revoked through an implied consent proceeding, that information will be forwarded to the department in charge of driver's licenses in your home state. Your home state will then use that information to decide whether to revoke or suspend your driver's license in your home state. As a result, it is important to make sure that you properly fight the charges with the assistance of an experienced DWI attorney. Contact Olson Defense to help avoid the loss of your driver's license by fighting your new DWI charges.
How do I get a work permit if my license was revoked for a DWI offense?
If your license has been revoked due to an implied consent violation or DWI conviction, you may be eligible for a limited license (A.K.A. Work Permit). A limited license allows someone to drive to and from work, to chemical dependency treatment, to purchase groceries and other household necessities, and to attend school. In order to get a limited license there is a 15-day waiting period, you must pass a test on chapters 7 and 8 of the Driver's Manual, pay a $680 reinstatement fee, and a new license fee. Contact Olson Defense for assistance with obtaining a work permit and fighting your DWI charges.
What is ignition interlock?
Ignition interlock, or simply, interlock, is a device that can be installed in a car that requires the driver to provide a breath sample prior to driving the car. Installation of an ignition interlock device is one option to reinstate a revoked or cancelled driver's license. Depending on the number and nature of previous DWI offenses, installation of an ignition interlock device may be required in order to reinstate your driver's license. Olson Defense has years of experience dealing with the ignition interlock program and can assist you with your ignition interlock and DWI related issues. Call us today at (952) 835-1088 for a free consultation.
What happens if I have a violation while on ignition interlock?
Ignition interlock violations can occur as a result of attempts to circumvent the device, driving a vehicle that does not have an interlock device, violating your limited license, not providing enough breath samples each month, failing to have the device serviced as required, missing tests, or testing positive for alcohol. As a practical matter, a violation means your vehicle will not start. Beyond your car not starting, the sanction for a violation depends on the type of violation. Sanctions can range anywhere from adding an additional 90 days to your interlock requirement, to adding 545 days to your requirement, and even requiring you to re-enroll in the program and start over. The lawyers at Olson Defense have years of experience with the ignition interlock program and are prepared to help you. If you need assistance with a DWI offense and have questions about the ignition interlock program, call Olson Defense at (952) 835-1088.
My car was taken when I got a DWI, where is it?
It depends. Usually, when someone is pulled over and subsequently arrested for DWI, their car is not parked in a place where parking is allowed. As a result, the vehicle must be moved. When this happens, the officer will call a towing company and have the vehicle brought to their impound lot. On a first offense, you can generally pick the vehicle up after paying any towing, impound, and storage fees charged by the towing company.
In the case of someone who has multiple DWI offenses, you may receive a document called a Notice of Seizure and Intent to Forfeit Vehicle. If this is the case, you will not be able to simply pay fees and pick your car up. However, you may still be able to get your car back by challenging the forfeiture in court. In order to challenge your vehicle forfeiture, there is a strict 6- day deadline that must be followed. The lawyers of Olson Defense can help you fight to get your vehicle back. Call us today at (952) 835-1088, before it's too late to fight for the return of your vehicle.
What does it mean if I received a notice of intent to forfeit my car?
A notice of intent to forfeit means that the police are alleging that your vehicle was used to commit a criminal offense and they intend to permanently take it away from you through a process called civil forfeiture. The police are not required to reimburse you for the value of your vehicle. You can fight the forfeiture of your vehicle, however, there is a strict 60 day deadline that must be followed in order to challenge the forfeiture of your vehicle. The lawyers of Olson Defense have the knowledge and experience to fight to keep your vehicle. If you have received a notice of intent to forfeit your vehicle, contact Olson Defense to fight to keep your vehicle.
Why were the license plates taken off my car?
If you have a previous DWI, test refusal, license revocation, a BAC of .16 or more, or a child under the age of 16 who is at least 3 years younger than the driver and are arrested for DWI, your license plates can be impounded. If this happens, you will be issued a Notice and Order of License Plate Impoundment. This is done in an effort to prevent people from being able to drive. If your license plates are taken, you can challenge it and potentially have the order of impoundment rescinded. There is a 60 day deadline to challenge your license plate impoundment. Olson Defense has experience getting license plate impoundments rescinded and may even be able to have your license plates reinstated while your case is pending. If your license plates have been impounded, contact the lawyers of Olson Defense at (952) 835-1088 to fight for you.
I got a DWI and I have a commercial driver's license (CDL), what will happen?
A person convicted of a DWI is subject to license revocation. Under federal law, someone convicted of a DWI offense will also have his or her commercial driver's license suspended following a DWI conviction. For a first offense, a person's commercial driver's license will be suspended for 1 year. Subsequent offenses can result in 3 year, or even lifetime suspensions. It is important to note that if your DWI occurred while operating a commercial motor vehicle, the legal limit is not .08. While operating a commercial motor vehicle, the legal limit is .04. If you have a commercial driver's license and have been charged with a DWI offense, contact Olson Defense to protect your rights.
Will I have to serve jail time?
A first offense, or 4th degree DWI, is a misdemeanor level offense. This means that a first DWI can be punished by a maximum penalty of 90 days in jail and/or a fine of up to $1,000. It is impossible for anyone to know for sure how a particular case will unfold, however our extensive experience allows us to advise you about what is likely to happen in your particular case. There are a variety of factors a judge will consider to determine how someone will be sentenced. For DWIs that are not a first offense, punishment can include mandatory minimum jail time. However, experienced DWI lawyers, like those at Olson Defense know how to help their clients avoid jail time on a first offense DWI and avoid the mandatory minimum jail sentences on subsequent DWIs. Contact Olson Defense at (952) 835-1088 to help you avoid spending time in jail for your DWI offense.
If I have prior DWI offenses, do I have to go to jail?
For a second offense within ten years of a previous DWI offense, you are supposed to be sentenced to a minimum of 30 days of incarceration with at least 48 hours spent in jail. For a third offense within ten years, a person is supposed to be sentenced to a minimum of 90 days of incarceration with at least 30 consecutive days spent in jail. For a fourth offense in a ten-year period, a person can be sentenced to a minimum of 180 days incarceration with at least 30 consecutive days spent in jail. For a fifth offense or more, a person can be sentenced to a minimum of one year of incarceration with at least 60 consecutive days spent in jail.
Despite these mandatory minimum sentences, it is possible to spend less, or even no, time in jail. The lawyers of Olson Defense have the knowledge and experience to help you avoid serving lengthy jail time for your DWI. If you have been charged with a DWI, contact Olson Defense at (952) 835-1088 to protect your freedom.
Is there anything I can do to help my case before I go to court?
Yes! There are several things you can do you help yourself before you go to court. The first and most important is to retain experienced criminal defense counsel to represent you in court. Through over 20 years of experience, Olson Defense has learned how to help you obtain the best possible outcome in your case. If you want to give yourself the best chance in court, contact the lawyers of Olson Defense at (952) 835-1088 for a free consultation.
Can I do some alternative to jail time for my DWI?
Although Minnesota Statutes require certain DWI offenders, particularly those with previous DWIs, to serve mandatory minimum sentences in jail, an experienced DWI lawyer knows how to avoid having to serve those mandatory minimum sentences. Olson Defense has helped their clients to successfully avoid spending time in jail and instead do probation coupled with treatment, counseling, home monitoring, community service, or education programs. Contact Olson Defense at (952) 835-1088 to help avoid having to serve mandatory minimum jail sentences for your DWI.
Can I get probation for my DWI and how long will that be for?
Yes, you can be sentenced to as little as a term of probation or up to a length of time in prison, followed by a term of probation or supervised release for a DWI offense. Every case is different due to a number of factors, but a term of probation will generally be somewhere between one and ten years. There are also two different types of probation, supervised and unsupervised. Supervised probation involves signing up with the probation department, paying a yearly fee, meeting with a probation officer, and complying with any requirements the probation department deems necessary, including random drug and alcohol tests. Unsupervised probation often does not require you to do anything beyond remaining law abiding during the term of probation.
Olson Defense has been able to successfully minimize the probation terms for our clients and get unsupervised probation when possible. If you have been charged with a DWI and have questions about probation, contact the experienced DWI lawyers at Olson Defense at (952) 835-1088.
What happens if I get into an accident while I am impaired and someone is injured or killed?
In Minnesota, if you are operating a motor vehicle and you are impaired or over the limit and you get into an accident and injure or kill someone, you can be charged with a more serious and separate charge of Criminal Vehicular Operation or Criminal Vehicular Homicide. A person convicted of Criminal Vehicular Operation can be sentenced to up to 5 years in prison and/or a fine of up to $10,000. If you are convicted of Criminal Vehicular Homicide, you can be sentenced to 10 years in prison and a fine of up to $20,000. If you are impaired at the time of the accident, you can also face the many consequences associated with DWI offenses. Olson Defense has previously worked with their clients to obtain the best possible outcomes in criminal vehicular operation and DWI-related cases. If you have been involved in an accident after drinking and driving, contact Olson Defense at (952) 835-1088 to protect your rights.
Why did they revoke my license before I even went to court?
Your driver's license and your criminal case are two separate proceedings. Your license can be revoked regardless of the status of your criminal case. In order to challenge the revocation of your driver's license, there are strict deadlines that must be followed. If you wait to contact an experienced DWI lawyer, you may not be able to challenge your driver's license revocation. Contact Olson Defense today at (952) 835-1088 to assist you in fighting the revocation of your driver's license before it's too late.
What happens if I am on probation and I get a DWI?
In addition to your new DWI charge, you could be looking at a new probation violation charge. A probation violation can mean having your probation revoked, increasing your time on probation, and/or increasing your probation requirements. If you have been charged with a DWI while on probation, you need a lawyer that is experienced handling DWIs and probation violations. Olson Defense has successfully defended against DWI and probation violation charges for years. If you are on probation and have been charged with a DWI, contact the lawyers of Olson Defense at (952) 835-1088 to protect your rights and help you achieve the best possible outcome.
How long is a reasonable amount of time to call a lawyer?
If you have been arrested for a DWI, an officer will usually bring you to a jail or a police station and request that you take a breath test on a Datamaster machine. Prior to deciding whether you want to take the test, the officer is required to provide you with a reasonable amount of time to talk to a lawyer. There is no specific definition for what constitutes a reasonable amount of time. However, we know what is not considered reasonable. If an officer only allows you two or three minutes to contact an attorney, this is probably unreasonable. On the other end of things, if someone insists that they need several hours to call their lawyer; this is also probably unreasonable. Based on existing case law, an officer should allow at least 20-30 minutes for someone to contact an attorney, depending on the person's efforts to contact an attorney. If you are being, or have been, asked to provide a breath sample, contact Olson Defense at (952) 835-1088 to discuss your legal rights.
Can I get a felony for a DWI?
Yes. If you have a fourth DWI in a ten-year period, you will be charged with first-degree DWI, which is a felony level offense. If you have previously been convicted of a felony DWI or any of several kinds of criminal vehicular operation, you can also be charged with a felony DWI. Olson Defense has the experience necessary to properly fight for your rights if you have been charged with a felony DWI. Contact Olson Defense at (952) 835-1088 for a free consultation to discuss how the reach the best possible outcome in your case.
What does it mean if my license was cancelled inimical to public safety (IPS)?
Inimical to public safety means that someone poses a danger to society. In the context of driver's licenses, this means that it has been determined that someone is unable to drive a vehicle without posing a danger to society. Generally, your driver's license can be cancelled as inimical to public safety after a third DWI offense. Once this has happened, your license will never be reinstated unless you follow very specific rules and comply with certain terms. These terms include enrollment in the ignition interlock program, a period of time with a limited license, and treatment. Olson Defense has the tools and knowledge necessary to assist you with your DWI and driver's license problems. Contact us at (952) 835-1088 for a free consultation.
What are the steps for my case in court?
The first step in your case is, appropriately named, a first appearance. If you have been charged with a misdemeanor, your first appearance will be an arraignment. At this hearing you will enter a plea of either guilty or not guilty. If you have wisely hired a lawyer, your lawyer will be able to waive your appearance and have a not guilty plea entered. This means that you may not need to attend this hearing. In a gross misdemeanor or felony case, the first appearance is known as a Rule 5 hearing and is usually combined with a Rule 8 hearing. If you have been charged with a gross misdemeanor or felony, you will not be required to enter a plea at your first appearance.
The next hearing is called an omnibus or pre-trial hearing. This hearing is an opportunity for the attorneys to discuss the case and see if a resolution can be reached, so hopefully you have hired one. If there are issues to contest, your lawyer will file Motions prior to this hearing. If the case is not settled and there are contested issues, the case will be set for a contested Omnibus or Rasmussen hearing.
If there are contested legal issues, your third hearing will be a contested Omnibus hearing. The most common issues are whether the police obtained evidence in an unlawful or unconstitutional manner. An experienced lawyer may be able to have all of the evidence against you thrown out at this hearing and the case may even be dismissed.
If the case is not dismissed following a contested hearing, your next court appearance will be another pre-trial hearing to see if the case can be settled before trial. This is sometimes called a settlement conference. If the case does not settle, the next step will be a trial. You can elect to have your trial heard by a judge or a jury. If you choose a jury trial, 6 jurors will be used for a misdemeanor or gross misdemeanor case and 12 for a felony case. All of the jurors must agree that you are guilty, beyond a reasonable doubt, before you can be convicted. If some, but not all jurors feel you are guilty, there is a hung jury. If this happens, the case may be settled or there may be a re-trial. If you are found not guilty, the case is over.
If you are found guilty or plead guilty to a charge, you may be sentenced right after being found guilty or pleading. You may also have your case set for another appearance called a sentencing hearing. At that hearing the judge would consider your circumstances and hear arguments from lawyers, victims, and you, and then decide on an appropriate sentence.
Olson Defense has years of experience successfully handling misdemeanor, gross misdemeanor, and felony trials. If you have been charged with a crime, do not attempt to navigate the criminal justice system alone. Contact the lawyers of Olson Defense at (952) 835-1088 for a free consultation.
Can I have a jury decide my case?
Yes. If you have been charged with a crime, you can choose whether to have your case decided by a judge or a jury of your peers. If you have been charged with a misdemeanor or gross misdemeanor level offense, a jury would be made up of 6 people. If you have been charged with a felony level offense, your jury would be made up of 12 people. Whether made up of 6 or 12 people, each juror would have to agree that you are guilty in order to find you guilty. If you have been charged with a crime or are facing a criminal trial, you should not try to handle it on your own. The state will be represented by an attorney in the form of the prosecutor, so it is important for you to have a professional fighting for you. The experienced professionals at Olson Defense have years of experience winning jury trials. Contact the lawyers of Olson Defense at (952) 835-1088 for a free consultation.
Can I get a DWI in a boat and will I lose my license?
Yes. Under Minnesota law, a boat is treated very similarly to a car for the purposes of DWIs. If you have been arrested for DWI while in a boat, you can lose the ability to operate your boat and also lose your driver's license. If it is your first offense, you can lose your boating privileges for 3 months during boating season. This means that you could spend most of your summer without the ability to drive your boat. Your driver's license can also be revoked, just like a DWI in a car. Olson Defense has successfully assisted clients charged with boating while intoxicated to reach the best possible outcome in their cases. If you have been charged with a DWI while operating a boat, contact Olson Defense at (952) 835-1088 to protect your legal rights.
Can I get a DWI on a recreational vehicle?
Yes. As a general rule, you can get a DWI using any vehicle that has a motor in it. This means that you can get a DWI on a snowmobile, four-wheeler, dirt bike, jet ski, or other recreational vehicle. DWIs involving recreational vehicles are handled like DWIs in a car. You can go to jail. Your privileges to operate a snowmobile, four-wheeler, or jet ski can be revoked. Additionally, your driver's license can be revoked. An experienced attorney can minimize both the criminal and driving privilege consequences for these offenses. If you have been charged for a DWI while driving a snowmobile, four-wheeler, or jet ski, contact Olson Defense at (952) 835-1088 for a free consultation.
How do I get my driver's license back after my DWI?
Generally, in order to have your license reinstated, you must pay a $680 reinstatement fee, pass a knowledge test on chapters 7 and 8 of the Minnesota Driver's Manual, complete a driver's license application, and pay the license fees. If you have more than one DWI offense, there may be additional requirements including participation in the ignition interlock program and having a limited license. An experienced DWI attorney may be able to help you avoid having your driver's license revoked or spending time on ignition interlock or with a limited license. The lawyers of Olson Defense have the knowledge and experience to give you the best chance to keep your license or get it back quickly. If you have been charged with a DWI and want to avoid a license revocation, contact Olson Defense at (952) 835-1088 for a free consultation.
What is the difference between a DWI case and an Implied Consent case?
A DWI case is criminal in nature. This means that the object of the case is to determine whether or not someone is guilty of an offense and if so, what punishment is appropriate. In a criminal case you can be fined or imprisoned if you are found guilty. On the other hand, an Implied Consent case is civil in nature. The object of an Implied Consent proceeding is to determine whether to revoke your driver's license and if so, for how long. An Implied Consent proceeding can result in the loss of your driving privileges, but cannot result in fines or imprisonment. An experienced DWI attorney will have the knowledge and tools necessary to expertly fight both your DWI and Implied Consent cases. If you have been charged with a DWI and/or received a Notice and Order of License Revocation, the lawyers of Olson Defense can help you fight for your rights. Contact us at (952) 835-1088 for a free consultation.
Will a DWI impact my immigration status?
A DWI may impact your immigration status. If you are in the United States on a visa, your visa could be revoked as a result of a DWI conviction. DWI offenses can also bar someone from receiving or renewing Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) status. Additionally, you need to be aware of inadmissibility and deportability. If you are a legal permanent resident, or green card holder, a DWI is unlikely to result in the initiation of deportation proceedings. However, if someone is injured or killed as a result of your DWI, or you are charged with additional offenses, you may be in danger of deportation. Additionally, someone with one or more DWI convictions may be denied naturalization, or citizenship. An experienced lawyer will have the knowledge necessary to help you navigate the complex overlap between criminal and immigration law. Olson Defense has experience handling cases for clients who are not United States citizens. If you are here on a visa, green card, are undocumented, or have, or plan to, apply for citizenship and are charged with a DWI, contact Olson Defense at (952) 835-1088 to protect your immigration status.
What are bail and bond and how do they work?
The terms bail and bond are frequently used interchangeably as though they mean the same thing. However, they are different, but related concepts. Bail is an amount of money set that must be paid before someone can be released form custody. When someone is arrested, they can be informed of a bail amount while being booked into jail or have a bail amount set by a judge. If you, or a friend or loved one, can afford to pay your bail amount, it can be paid and you can be released. If you fail to appear for court, the court takes the money and a warrant is issued for your arrest. If you appear for all of you hearings and your case is finished, the money can be refunded to you. If you are sentenced to pay fines, restitution, or court costs, your bail money may be applied to pay those costs.
If you are unable to pay your bail, you can use a bail bond company to help secure your release. A bail bond company essentially tells the court that you will show up for court and if you don't, they will pay your bail. In exchange for their promise to pay your bail if you don't show up for court, the bail bond company charges you a fee. The fee is commonly 10% of whatever your bail was. So for example, if your bail was set at $12,000 then a bail bond company would probably charge you a fee of $1,200 to post bond for you. If you do not show up for court, the bail bond company will have to pay the court whatever your bail was. If you do show up for all of your court appearances and your case is completed, you will not receive any money back. The bail bond company keeps your money as their profit.
An experienced lawyer will know how to help get your bail lowered and may even be able to get you released without paying any money. The lawyers of Olson Defense have years of experience assisting clients with their release from custody. If you or a loved one are in custody, contact Olson Defense at (952) 835-1088 to discuss your options.
Will my name be published in the newspaper if I was arrested for DWI?
Whether or not your name is published in a newspaper following an arrest depends on two main factors. The first is the newspaper. Some choose to publish information on those who have been arrested and others do not. The second factor is who has been arrested. If you are a famous person, or a public official, you are more likely to find your name published in the newspaper following an arrest. If you have been charged with a crime, now is the time for professional assistance. The lawyers of Olson Defense have the knowledge, experience, and tools necessary to help get you the best results possible. If you have been charged with a crime, call (952) 835-1088 for a free consultation with one of the experienced attorneys at Olson Defense.
I have a professional license and got a DWI, what will happen?
If you hold a professional license and are charged with a DWI, you may be subject to reporting and other requirements. You may even be at risk of losing your professional license and career. Olson Defense has experience representing doctors, nurses, psychologists, psychiatrists, dentists, realtors, and other professionals. If you have a professional license and have been charged with a DWI, contact Olson Defense at (952) 835-1088 to help protect your professional reputation.