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Impaired Driving (DUI) Lawyer Toronto

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Understanding Impaired Driving & DUI Lawyer Toronto – Impaired Driving Lawyer

In Canada, ‘impaired driving’ refers to a criminal offence of operating or having care or control of a motor vehicle while under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

DUI (driving under the influence) is the most common criminal charge in Canada and it happens if you drive with a blood alcohol level in excess of 80 milligrams of alcohol per 100 milliliters of blood (.08). Impaired driving and driving with blood alcohol level in excess of .08 attract similar penalties.

The 3 criminal DUI offences in Canada

Impaired Driving or Care & Control of a Motor Vehicle

The Canadian Criminal Code prohibits the operation of a motor vehicle while under the influence of drugs or alcohol. However, the Crown prosecutor has to prove that your ability to operate a motor vehicle was impaired by drugs or alcohol during the driving or care and control of the motor vehicle.

Note that the Crown prosecutor only needs to prove there was even the slightest hint of impairment, but he/she still has to prove this beyond any reasonable doubt.

Our impaired driving lawyer at Costa Law Firm, we have been defending clients against impaired driving charges for several years now. We will ensure the court looks at such factors as comprehension, evidence of balance, motor skills, judgment, reaction time, physical movement, and coordination during the time of the arrest.

Care and control of a motor vehicle mean you might not have been operating the vehicle or even behind the wheel at all, but the vehicle was under your direct responsibility. A good example of this is “sleeping it off” in a car while under the influence. The Crown prosecutor has to prove intention such as that you had the intention of starting the vehicle or there was a risk that you would accidentally set the vehicle in motion.

During our defense, we will bring in such factors as the location of the keys, your position in the vehicle, and your plans for alternative transportation. As an example, if you were sleeping in the back seat and you are being charged with intending to start the motor vehicle, no judge will buy this. Another example is if you are accused of intending to start the vehicle while you had already called an Uber.

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Driving or Having Care & Control while Over 80

This is a more serious charge because it means you are charged with driving or being in care and control of a motor vehicle while you are already drunk. To sustain this charge, the police officer will have taken a blood sample through a qualified technical at the police station or used a breath analyzer and the results should have shown that you have a blood alcohol level of over 80mg of alcohol in 100mL of blood.

Under section 253 of the Canadian Criminal Code, if an officer has reasonable grounds to suspect that you have committed an offence within the past 3 hours due to alcohol, he/she can demand that you provide “suitable breath samples into an approved instrument.”

On the other hand, blood samples are taken if you are unable to give a breath sample (such as if you have been injured in a motor vehicle collision). An officer of the peace can demand a blood sample, with the approval of a medical doctor, and the doctor or nurse can assist collect the sample.

Although this is much more difficult to argue and win, we will urge the court to exclude the samples from its consideration. As an example, we may argue that the findings were not accurate due to equipment or human error, even when there is a Certificate of a Qualified Technician. In case of toxicology reports, we will argue the inaccuracy of the assumptions the extrapolated readings are predicated on.

Failure or Refusal to Provide Breath Sample

Under Canadian law, you are obligated to provide breath samples if a valid demand is made by an officer of the peace, unless there is a reasonable and understandable reason not to do this.

If you are accused of not failure or refusal to provide a breath sample, we will argue that the demand was not valid and it violated your “protection against unreasonable searches and seizures” which is in section 8 of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. Failure to comply with an invalid demand is not an offence. We will apply before the judge to have these results excluded as evidence under section 24(2) of the Charter. We will also argue that there was a reasonable excuse not to give the breath sample.

DUI Penalties Lawyer Toronto

You need a impaired driving lawyer Toronto for DUI cases because the penalties for driving under the influence are quite serious. They include:

If you are convicted, you will get an automatic Canada-wide driving prohibition, and either a jail sentence or a fine and the possibility of probation.

First Time

  • Mandatory treatment program or education
  • $1,000 fine and victim fine surcharge of 30%
  • 1-year minimum requirement to drive a car that has an ignition interlock device
  • No minimum jail sentence
  • 1-year licence suspension

Second Time

  • Mandatory treatment program or education
  • A fine with the amount at the discretion of the judge
  • 3-year minimum requirement to drive a car that has an ignition interlock device
  • 30-day minimum jail sentence
  • 2-year licence suspension
  • Third and subsequent times
  • Mandatory treatment program or education
  • A fine with the amount at the discretion of the judge
  • Variable interlock periods
  • 120-day minimum jail sentence
  • 3-year licence suspension

Other than these penalties, another reason to avoid DUI charges is that with them come higher insurance rates, a criminal record, and you could get someone killed. The Ministry of Transportation may also impose even heftier penalties, including suspension of your license for life (which we can assist your appeal after the lapse of 10 years).

Avoid driving under the influence since you risk 10 years in jail if someone is hurt and a life sentence if someone is killed. Whatever happens, we are here for you. You can call us on 416-535-6329 to ask a criminal defence lawyer Toronto any question you may have on impaired driving and DUI.

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