BAKER DEANE
& NUTT

Canberra
Level 1, 1 Farrell Place
Canberra City ACT 2601
Phone: (02) 6230 1999

Queanbeyan
260 Crawford Street
Queanbeyan NSW 2620
Phone: (02) 6299 3999

Drink Driving

The Penalties associated with drink driving can be severe and legal representation is usually recommended.

If you have been charged with drink driving, our solicitors will:

  • Advise whether you should plead guilty or not guilty;
  • Appear with you at court; and
  • Speak to the presiding Magistrate and prosecutors on your behalf.

The prospect of a criminal record is gravely concerning for most people and we will work to ensure the process is as quick and stress free as it possibly can be.

FAQS

Should I plead guilty or not guilty?

We will examine the circumstances of the charge and advise whether it can be defended. If the charge cannot be defended a plea of guilty should be entered as soon as possible.

What penalties apply to drink driving charges in the ACT?

Licence disqualification periods

1st offender

Repeat offender

Level 1 (0.02g – 0.049g)

1 – 3 months

3 – 12 months

Level 2 (0.05g – 0.079g)

2 – 6 months

3 – 12 months

Level 3 (0.08g – 0.149g)

3 – 12 months

6 months – 3 years

Level 4 (0.150g or more)

6 months – 3 years

12 months – 5 years

Maximum penalties

1st offenders

Repeat offenders

Level 1 (0.02g – 0.049g)

$550

$1,100

Level 2 (0.05g – 0.079g)

$550

$1,100

Level 3 (0.08g – 0.149g)

$1,100 / 6 months jail

$1,100 / 6 months jail

Level 4 (0.150g or more)

$1,650 / 9 months jail

$2,200 / 12 months jail

What penalties apply to drink driving charges in NSW?

Licence disqualification periods

1st offender

Repeat offenders

Novice Range (0.00 – 0.019)

3 – 6 months

6 – 12 months

Special Range (0.02 – 0.049)

3 – 6 months

6 – 12 months

Low Range (0.05 – 0.079)

3 – 6 months

6 – 12 months

Mid Range (0.08 – 0.149)

6 – 12 months

12 months – 3 years

High Range (0.150 + )

12 months – 3 years

2 years – 5 years

Maximum penalties

1st offenders

2nd offence within 5 years

Novice Range (0.00 – 0.019)

$1,100

$2,200

Special Range (0.02 – 0.049)

$1,100

$2,200

Low Range (0.05 – 0.079)

$1,100

$2,200

Mid Range (0.08 – 0.149)

$2,200 / 9 months jail

$3,300 / 12 months jail

High Range (0.150 + )

$3,300 / 18 months jail

$5,500 / 2 years jail

Can I get a restricted licence?

You can apply for a restricted licence if:

  • The drink driving offence occurred in the ACT;
  • You live in the ACT;
  • It is your first drink driving offence; and
  • You hold a full licence and your blood alcohol concentration was between 0.05g – 0.099g OR you are a special licence holder and your blood alcohol concentration was between 0.02g – 0.049g.

Further conditions concerning eligibility can be found at www.courts.act.gov.au.

Can I get a non-conviction order?

Sometimes a court will find a person guilty of an offence but not record a conviction.

If a non-conviction order is granted, you will be able to retain your drivers licence. This outcome is normally reserved for people who:

  • Have been driving for a significant period of time;
  • Have a perfect or near perfect driving record; and
  • Loss of their licence would have an inordinate impact on their capacity to work or ability to care for an ill family member etc.

Can I enrol in the Alcohol Interlock Program?

If the offence occurred in NSW and you hold a NSW licence, you may be eligible to participate in this program. Participation in the program is voluntary and requires a participant to pay to have an electronic breath testing device fitted to their vehicle.

Further information can be found at www.rta.nsw.gov.au.

Baker Deane & Nutt