Most Floridians have been to or will visit other states for business, vacation, or family reasons. Perhaps you went to visit relatives for a holiday, gone somewhere like New York City or Las Vegas for a fun trip, or had to attend a professional conference for work.
In any of these scenarios, it would not be unusual for drinking to be part of the celebrations, activities, or meals. However, if you consume alcohol and then drive, you may be charged with driving under the influence (DUI). Regardless of where you are, if you have received a DUI conviction while out-of-state it can still impact you when you return home.
Out-of-State DUIs Can Follow You to Florida
Getting a DUI while out-of-state may be more than a minor inconvenience, as you may need to travel again to make necessary court appearances. Additionally, the penalties you ultimately receive may be more than a simple fine.
Florida, like almost all states, is part of the Driver License Compact. This agreement allows sharing of driving records, including DUI convictions, between the states. Therefore, even when you live in Florida, if you are arrested in a fellow compact state you may face legal problems at home as well.
How the Driver License Compact Affects You in Florida
The Driver License Compact functionally eliminates the barriers between jurisdictions. Under the law, states that belong to the Driver License Compact must report convictions to the home state of the offender. Your home state will have notice of the full record, including the arrest, charges, any special circumstances, your plea, the outcome of any hearings or trials, and the disposition of your case.
Armed with all of this information, a home state may then suspend, limit, or revoke your driver’s license just as if you had been charged and convicted of DUI while there. In Florida, that may mean your driver’s license will be suspended for one to ten years, with the length of suspension dependent on factors such as the number of DUI convictions already on your record and the amount of time between them. In the most serious cases, an offender’s driver’s license may be revoked.
With the Driver License Compact in place, a Floridian offender will not only have to deal with consequences in the court of the jurisdiction where they were arrested, charged, and convicted, but also at home.
A St. Petersburg DUI Attorney You Can Rely On
If you have been charged and convicted of a DUI out-of-state, speak to an experienced criminal defense lawyer at home in St. Petersburg as soon as possible. Contact Khonsari Law Group today. Our legal team is dedicated to helping Florida residents protect their rights and get fair treatment under the law, and our lawyers have worked with clients who have received a DUI conviction while out-of-state. Don’t wait to get the legal support that you need. Call us at (727) 269-5300 or online to schedule a free consultation and learn if we may be able to help you.