Drink Driving and Motor Traffic Law

Arnotts Sydney drink driving lawyers represent defendants in drink driving, motor vehicle and traffic infringement matters.

According to the RTA, drink driving contributes to around 20 percent of all fatal accidents in NSW. This results in the deaths of over 100 people every year. Further, most drink drivers involved in fatal crashes across NSW are male (88%) and aged under 40 (75%). Most of these drivers crash in their local area. In country areas of NSW there are more than twice as many fatal drink driving crashes than in metropolitan areas, despite country areas having much smaller populations. In fact, 72 percent of all fatal drink drive crashes occur in country NSW.

The law imposes serious penalties for these matters, Arnotts Sydney lawyers are experienced in defending charges brought for low, mid ranged and high range prescribed content of alcohol (pca) matters.

In New South Wales, for high range drink driving matters, Courts can award fines of up to $5,500. There are also gaol terms that may be applicable. The penalties and gaol terms applicable will vary according to a range of factors, and will generally decrease when the defendant's blood alcohol level is lower. The other thing to consider with drink driving is the suspension of the defendant's drivers licence. Licences can be suspended by the Court for a significant time. This can have an effect on the defendant's livelihood, especially where the drivers licence is needed for work purposes.

Our Sydney drink driving lawyers have experience in delivering both guilty and not-guilty pleas on behalf of our clients.

Police can stop drivers at random to test for alcohol. They can also arrest drivers found to be over the legal limit. In addition, persons involved in car accidents may be subjected to a blood alcohol test.

The normal procedure is, depending on the blood alcohol level, that the defendant will be conveyed to a police station to make a statement after being arrested. The police will subsequently issue a statement of facts and a court attendance notice requiring the defendant to appear at the Court.

Before going to Court it is advisable to seek legal representation. Generally, a drink driving lawyer will be able to prepare a defence that can produce favourable results. There is a considerable amount of work involved in preparing a high quality defence and it is therefore advisable to seek legal advice at the earliest stage possible. In certain exceptional circumstances, it may even be possible to have the charges dismissed.
We can provide efficient, responsive and cost effective legal services for clients charged with drink driving and other traffic management matter. Currently (as at May 2007), the penalties for Prescribed Content of Alcohol (PCA) offences in New South Wales are as follows:


PCA offence
High range PCA
(Blood alcohol concentration of 0.15 or above)
OR
Refuse a breath analysis, hinder or obstruct taking of a blood sample, wilfully alter the concentration in the blood.
Penalties First Offence Second or
subsequent offence
Maximum court- imposed fine $3,300 $5,500
Maximum gaol term 18 months 2 years
Disqualification    

-minimum

12 months 2 years

-maximum

Unlimited Unlimited

-automatic*

3 years 5 years
Immediate licence suspension Yes Yes

PCA offence
Mid range PCA
(Blood alcohol concentration of 0.08 to less than 0.15)
Penalties First Offence Second or
subsequent offence
Maximum court- imposed fine $2,200 $3,300
Maximum gaol term 9 months 12 months
Disqualification    

-minimum

6 months 12 months

-maximum

Unlimited Unlimited

-automatic*

12 months 3 years
Immediate licence suspension Yes Yes

PCA offence
Low range PCA
(Blood alcohol concentration of 0.05 to less than 0.08)
OR
Novice range PCA
(Blood alcohol concentration over zero for novice drivers)
OR
Special range PCA
(Blood alcohol concentration over 0.02 for special category drivers)
Penalties First Offence Second or
subsequent offence
Maximum court- imposed fine $1,100 $2,200
Maximum gaol term N/a N/a
Disqualification    

-minimum

3 months 6 months

-maximum

6 months Unlimited

-automatic*

6 months 12 months
Immediate licence suspension No No

Contact us for urgent assistance with your drink driving or PCA charge.

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