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Maryland has serious drunk driving laws

Drunk driving is a criminal act that can lead to some serious legal consequences. It is imperative that all drivers have a good understanding of what constitutes drunk driving in this state. There are a few points that might surprise you.

You can face a criminal charge even if your blood alcohol concentration (BAC) is less than .08 percent. While .08 percent is the standard limit for a driving under the influence charge. you only need a .07 percent to face a driving while impaired by alcohol charge. People who aren't yet able to drink legally have a much lower limit of only .02 percent.

You have the right to refuse a BAC test. This doesn't mean that you won't be penalized by your choice, however. Instead, you will face penalties because of the implied consent laws in Maryland.

Your vehicle can be impounded if you're arrested for driving under the influence. In many cases, the officer will allow you to have ask a sober friend to come to get your vehicle. This decision is usually a judgment call from the arresting officer and done as a courtesy to you.

You might have to go through mandatory alcohol education, assessment and treatment. The court will evaluate your case to determine what is appropriate.

You may have to use an ignition interlock after the charge. While this is only mandatory after certain convictions, the court does have the discretion to apply the requirement to any case in which a person is found or pleads guilty.

You need to make sure that you understand the specifics of your case. There could be weak spots in the case against you that you can use to your advantage in your defense strategy.

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