Impact of a DUI Arrest in Colonial Heights

Being charged with driving under the influence is often frightening. Furthermore, while the arrest process is often confusing and overwhelming, many people worry about the long-term effects of having a DUI on their record.

If you were charged with a DUI and are unsure of how to proceed, consider reaching out to a seasoned lawyer to discuss the impact of a DUI arrest in Colonial Heights. By consulting with a knowledgeable attorney, you could understand how a charge may affect your future and how to best proceed.

The DUI Arrest Process

Upon being arrested for driving under the influence, a person will most likely go to jail. Then, there will be a 20-minute waiting period, which is required before conducting a breath test at the station on the Intox EC/IR II. If the test results are in the driver’s favor, they would be let go. Realistically, however, that is not likely to happen—because if an officer has probable cause to arrest someone for DUI, they will often formally charge them. Furthermore, the results of this test may be used against an individual in court.


Next, a person will be brought before a magistrate to determine whether they deserve a bond. Often, a person will receive a bond for first-time DUI offenses. After the bond is posted, the magistrate and the court have the discretion to grant them bond in a few ways. One is a personal recognizance bond—meaning the person promises to come back when needed, and are then let go. This functions in the same way as an unsecured bond.

If they are required to post a cash bond, however, they will be told they can leave and come back on their court date—only if they pay the court a certain amount of money. In other instances, they may have to get drug and alcohol testing, wear a home electronic monitor, or be subjected to consistent alcohol testing.  After a bond is decided, they will put them in a holding cell until the person has sobered up or is safe enough to go home. If so, they will be released, but they will not be able to drive themselves home because they will have an administrative license suspension for the following seven days. However, a magistrate may give them no bond. If this is the case, the individual will have to sit in jail until they appear in front of the judge or until the case is otherwise disposed of.

License Suspension

Whether a DUI on the record in Virginia affects a person’s ability to get a license in another state depends on the time span between the two. If their license is suspended in Virginia, other states will respect that suspension and not issue a license. But, some states the will issue them a license. However, if they are stopped in another state, that state will know their license was suspended in Virginia and they could, therefore, be arrested for driving with a suspended license.

What Are the Long-Term Effects of a DUI?

The long-term impact that a DUI arrest could have on a person’s life includes not being allowed to drive —including to work—as well as not being given a restricted license during an administrative suspension. Therefore, missing work and possibly losing a job is a possibility. Depending on how drunk they were at the time of arrest, a person’s car also may be impounded, meaning they will have to pay fees to get their car out, and if they cannot pay them, they might lose their vehicle.

Furthermore, a person’s employer can find out about their DUI arrest in a couple of ways. Often, an employer is told by someone else of a DUI arrest, or they see a doctor’s paper or information online. Generally, what a person needs to tell their employer about a DUI arrest is up to the employer, and every employment contract is different. Therefore, an individual does not necessarily have to tell their employer anything. However, after an arrest, they should read their employment contract to be sure they understand what is expected of them. Certain employment contracts are very clear—if an employee is charged with a crime, it is their responsibility to report that to the company within a certain number of days after the arrest. If they fail to do so, that probably will be grounds for termination immediately.

As with an employer, what a person must report to their insurance company about a DUI arrest depends on the company. However, the insurer will find out either way, because the arresting officer will report it to the DMV, who will subsequently contact the driver’s insurer.

The Impact of a DUI For Out of State Drivers

If a person is visiting Colonial Heights or any part of Virginia from out of state or out of the country, a DUI arrest is likely to have a large impact on their plans to return home. Usually, they will be given a court date and will have to return for each appearance.

If they do not, an additional charge will be granted and they may be subject to a license suspension. Naturally, this will make it even more difficult to leave the state. Furthermore, the courts in Virginia mal also make them a flight risk for a second violation. This means they would not be released on bond, and would instead have to sit in jail until their court date.

How an Attorney Might Help with the Impact of a DUI Arrest in Colonial Heights

After a DUI arrest, it may be difficult for a lawyer to minimize the negative effects. However, an attorney could help to educate them about how to navigate the ensuing legal process and work tirelessly to ensure they do not make blunders with their bond.

If you were arrested for driving while intoxicated, it is essential to understand the impact of a DUI arrest in Colonial Heights. No matter the circumstances, consider reaching out to a legal professional for help.