Every state has strict laws against driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, with harsh penalties that can upend your entire life. Drivers charged with this serious offense are often confused, overwhelmed, and unsure of what to do next. What happens if you’re convicted, and do you need a DUI attorney? How can you protect your rights? Here are answers to some of the most common you might have after being accused of a DUI.

What You Need to Know About DUIs

What are the penalties if I’m convicted?

The consequences for driving under the influence vary by state, but you may likely face jail time, a suspended license, and steep fines, even for a first offense. In Montana, drivers convicted of a first offense must spend at least 24 hours in jail, pay fines of up to $1,000, and lose their driving privileges for six months.

What is an arraignment?

dui attorneyThe arraignment is your first court appearance before a judge, which can be an intimidating experience. At this initial hearing, the court will read the charges against you, set bail, and ask you to enter a plea of “guilty” or “not guilty.” Whenever possible, it’s best to have a DUI lawyer before the arraignment begins.

Do I need a DUI attorney?

DUI attorneys provide essential insight and expertise that can be instrumental in achieving a positive outcome. They’ll review the circumstances of your arrest to ensure your rights were respected, challenge any improperly collected evidence, and help decide whether accepting a plea or going to trial is in your best interests.

What is an aggravated DUI?

If your alleged actions placed another person at risk or actually resulted in serious injury, you may be charged with aggravated DUI. In Montana, being arrested with a blood alcohol content higher than 0.18%, driving on a suspended license, or having children in the vehicle may result in more serious charges with increased penalties.


If you’ve been accused of a DUI in Kalispell, MT, Lane K. Bennett, Attorney at Law, will provide the peace of mind and aggressive representation you deserve. With over 36 years of experience, access to a wide range of resources, and a reputation for excellence, you can rely on this law firm to deliver the best results possible. Visit their website to see the types of cases they handle, or call (406) 752-7300 to consult with a skilled DUI attorney.