What is a Per Se DUI Law?

Categories: Colorado Springs DUI Attorney

Keys and a drink

DUI Defense Lawyer Protecting Colorado’s Citizens

Most people know that there are DUI statutes in Colorado, but what many may not realize is that there are also “per se laws” that could land them in jail.

A per se law for DUI and DWAI cases means that once you have a blood alcohol content (BAC) level of 0.08 percent, you are intoxicated by law. No further evidence of your impairment is required. Even if you were driving perfectly and were not a danger to society, the fact that you have a 0.08 percent BAC means that you were legally intoxicated.

Most states employ the per se DUI law, and Colorado is one of them. Therefore, any driver with a 0.08 percent BAC could be convicted of a DUI. For a DWAI, all it takes is a 0.05 percent.

Why Are There Per Se Laws?

The per se laws were created so that an individual realizes that even if he or she feels sober, the driver could be convicted of a DUI based solely on the BAC at the time of the arrest. Any time you exceed the per se limit, you are legally presumed to be intoxicated. The laws make it easier for the prosecution to convict you, without requiring much more evidence than your BAC levels.

Can You Challenge the Results?

The best defense you have is to challenge the blood or breath results. If you register a 0.08 BAC or higher and you are a victim of the per se law, you still have options. Your criminal defense attorney may challenge the validity of those test results. After all, these machines can vary and are known to produce miscalculations when it comes to BAC levels. Next, you may be able to argue the chain of evidence, especially if a blood sample was taken to a laboratory.

Bottom line, your attorney can come up with the best defense plan possible.

Does Per Se Laws Affect Drugged Driving?

Under per se DUI laws, there is no rule for drugged driving in Colorado. Other states do have per se laws that address drugged driving, including Arizona, Utah, and Nevada. These states have specific limits for intoxicating drugs, but the rest have zero tolerance rules, which means that any presence of narcotics or other illegal substances results in a drugged driving arrest.

Underage Drivers and the Per Se DUI Laws

Underage drivers have stricter rules when it comes to a BAC level and what constitutes drunken driving. As of right now, Colorado’s statute states that a juvenile cannot have a BAC of 0.02 or more. Anyone under the age of 21 who has a BAC of 0.05 and higher will receive the same penalties as an adult driver with a 0.08 percent or higher.

Juvenile offenses are treated harshly, because the courts want to deter young drivers from engaging in reckless behaviors.

Arrested Based on Per Se DUI Laws? It is Imperative You Call a Lawyer Now

If you have been arrested based on the per se DUI laws of Colorado, your best shot is to contact a criminal defense attorney who understands these laws and has experience defending against them.

Schedule a consultation now with Christian A. Schwaner, P.C. at 719-577-9700 or request more information through his online contact form.