Understand Your Rights With a Drinking and Driving Lawyer in Toronto

There is a substantial amount of misinformation out there pertaining to Ontario’s drinking and driving laws; most people don’t realize that they can be convicted of “drinking and driving” even when they’re not actually “driving” their vehicle. In any case you may want to defend your case by consulting with a drink and drive lawyer, call John Erickson law firm, we can help.

Drinking and driving is outlined in the Criminal Code as occurring in two cases:

1. If you operate a motor vehicle while:

a) your ability to do so is either impaired by alcohol or a drug, or

b) the concentration of alcohol in your blood exceeds 80 milligrams of alcohol per 100 millilitres of blood, commonly referred to as an “over 80” charge

2. If you have “care or control” of a motor vehicle while:

a) your ability to operate it is impaired by alcohol or a drug, or

b) the concentration of alcohol in your blood exceeds 80 milligrams of alcohol per 100 millilitres of blood, commonly referred to as an “over 80” charge

The definition of “care or control” of a motor vehicle extends far beyond driving, as your drinking and driving lawyer in Toronto will explain.  For example, you could be found to be in “care or control” of your vehicle if you are asleep in the driver’s seat or even if you are outside of it and simply arranging for it to be towed by a tow truck!

In practice, people are often charged with both of “impaired” and “over 80” at once. However, it is possible to be found guilty of impaired operation or impaired care or control even though your blood-alcohol concentration is less than 80 milligrams and vice versa, you can be found guilty of over 80 operation or over 80 care or control even though you are not impaired.

As well, did you know that you can be convicted of “drinking and driving” for refusing to provide a breath sample? It’s true.  If a police officer makes a valid demand for a breath sample, you can be convicted of “drinking and driving” for refusing or failing to provide it.  Some people think they can “beat the charge” by refusing testing, but this will garner the same punishment that you’d receive for being impaired or having more than 80 milligrams of alcohol in your system.

What can I expect if I’m convicted of drinking and driving in Ontario?

It’s vital that you find a drinking and driving lawyer in Toronto to represent your interests in the case of a conviction. You can expect the following:

– A criminal record

– Being prohibited from driving for a minimum of one year

– Being fined at least $1,000

– The Ontario Highway Traffic Act automatically suspends your license for 90 days. This happens just from being charged even if you are later found not guilty.

– Jail time for those convicted of a second, third or subsequent offence

– Penalties will increase if anyone is injured or killed as a result of your drinking and driving

To learn more, or find a drinking and driving lawyer in Toronto, visit http://ericksonlaw.ca/impaired-driving-charges.