Missouri DUI vs. DWI

DUI vs. DWIWhat is the difference between a DUI and a DWI? Is there a difference? In the state of Missouri, the answer is no, no difference at all. In some other states a DUI means “driving under the influence” and means driving while impaired by any drug other than alcohol. A DWI in those states means “driving while intoxicated” and is used when alcohol is involved in the impairment. Several states, Missouri being one of them, have decided to incorporate the two charges and only use one acronym to define the charge. In Missouri, a person is guilty of a DWI if “he operates a motor vehicle while in an intoxicated or drugged condition.”

The effects of a DWI in Missouri will haunt your life for a very long time if you are arrested and convicted for driving while intoxicated. If you are stopped and arrested because you were driving a vehicle while impaired, there are two separate sections of Missouri law that will govern your arrest and the suspension of your driving privilege.

Criminal Law

This law deals with the ticket that was issued.  If you are convicted of an alcohol offense, the court sends a copy of the conviction to the Department of Revenue, and the proper points are assessed to your driving record.  As a result of the point assessment, your driving privilege may be suspended or revoked.

Administrative Law

This law imposes a separate suspension or revocation of the driving privilege if your blood alcohol content (BAC) level is over the legal limit or you refuse the BAC test(s).  This is an automatic suspension or revocation, even if the ticket was disposed of in court or reduced to a lesser charge.

The end result of these to sections of law being paired together in a DWI charge is that you WILL lose your driving privileges for a period of time, even if you get the criminal charge dropped or reduced. (This only applies if your blood alcohol level was over the legal limit.) The bottom line here is this: You need legal help with this charge. You need a good DWI attorney that has a proven record and knows the court system and laws in Missouri. You need DWI Springfield. Criminal defense attorneys Ted Eckelkamp and Dan Romine are dedicated solely to DUI and DWI defense. Call (417) 893-0394.