In Florida, a person accused of DUI has faced mandatory adjudication, also known as conviction, for many decades. In cases where the Court is not restricted, it can also withhold adjudication which means that technically a person is not convicted. The difference can have far reaching consequences. For example, a DUI cannot be expunged because of the conviction and convictions stay on a driving history for up to seventy-five (75) years. Convictions also require higher surcharges and court costs.
Recently, a bill was introduced that would have given back to judges the discretion to withhold adjudication in a DUI if accompanied by an ignition interlock device. In addition, there would have been assistance by subsidizing the costs of an ignition interlock device. Furthermore, there was retroactive application to allow people sentenced under the current law to petition the Court to enter a withhold of adjudication five (5) years after sentencing.
Unfortunately, the bill will not become a law and a DUI arrest means that the defendant is still facing mandatory conviction or adjudication. DUI law is technical and involves many aspects of law, procedure and science. To get the firm started on the case, please click, call or fill out the form.
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SB 612 (2019).