This blog post is the first in a series that will explain DUI law in West Virginia. So, what is a DUI? Pursuant to West Virginia Code §17C-5-2, a person is guilty of DUI when he/she is driving on a West Virginia road while being in an “impaired state.” For purposes of DUI law, generally, a person is impaired with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .08% or more, or under the influence of drugs, alcohol, or any impairing substance, or combination thereof. Notice I said generally. There are more specific factual situations where different BAC levels trigger the DUI statute.
Driving Under the Influence in West Virginia has two threshold questions. (1) Are you a commercial or non-commercial driver? (2) What is your age? The alcohol levels needed to prove DUI are different depending on how a person answers these two basic questions.
In West Virginia, a non-commercial driver who is 21 years or older is considered legally impaired when his/her BAC level is .08 or more. This type of DUI represents the majority of DUIs prosecuted in West Virginia and for purposes of this blog post, we are going to call this type of DUI a “garden variety” DUI.
Commercial drivers and people who are driving impaired under the age of 21 have different BAC levels that trigger the DUI statute. Commercial Drivers, generally because of larger nature of the vehicles they drive, have stricter BAC level requirements. Commercial drivers, which includes school bus drivers in this state, are legally impaired when their BAC level is .04 percent or greater, or they are under the influence of drugs. Finally, a person younger than 21 years old in West Virginia is considered legally impaired when his/her BAC measures .02 or more. This is called the West Virginia Zero Tolerance law.
Being convicted of DUI in West Virginia is a big deal that can have effects on your personal and professional life. Here at John J. Balenovich Law Offices, LC, we are passionate about fighting for your rights. We know how to challenge the evidence, and we know what’s at stake if you’re facing DUI charges. We want to help you get back on your feet. We have your back.
Ready to get started? Call our attorneys at John J. Balenovich Law Offices, LC, today at (304) 925-2100.