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Drunk driving charges in North Carolina can throw the accused individual’s life into different types of chaos. Drunk driving charges can leave the accused individual unable to drive to get to work and facing both potentially serious criminal penalties and administrative consequences.

In North Carolina, drunk driving charges subject the accused individual to a two-part process that includes potential criminal penalties and consequences on one hand and potential administrative consequences on the other. The administrative consequences the accused individual may be facing include potential driver’s license suspension. DWI charges can then result in losing a driver’s license and still facing the potential criminal consequences of drunk driving charges as well.

The criminal process, and potential penalties associated with drunk driving charges in North Carolina, is complicated and is based on what level of DWI the accused individual is charged with. Potential penalties can generally include jail time, a significant fine, a substance abuse assessment and installing an ignition interlock device on the accused individual’s vehicle. Both aggravating and mitigating factors associated with the accused individual’s case will be considered when evaluating the penalties they will face.

Because the two processes, the criminal and administrative processes, are separate, it is important for individuals accused of a DW in North Carolina to know how to address each portion and phase of the process after they have been charged with drunk driving. This includes regular criminal defense options that accused individuals should always be familiar with and now how to protect themselves with.