Driving under the influence is considered a serious crime in the state of Florida which can result in excessive penalties. Unlike other areas of the law, even first-time offenders can end up with hefty fines, sentences, and turmoil for a very long time.

Given the sensitive nature of such crimes, it is important that you hire the very best to defend your case. “Smith and Eulo Law Firm: Melbourne Criminal Defense Lawyers” has over 100 years of combined experience which will be used to defend you against your DUI charge.

DUI lawyer in Melbourne FL

Definition of a DUI

In the state of Florida, a person is guilty of the offense of driving under the influence and is subject to punishment if the person is driving or in actual physical control of a vehicle within this state and

  • Is under the influence of alcoholic beverages
  • Has a blood alcohol level of 0.08 or more grams of alcohol per 100 milliliters of blood
  • Has a blood alcohol level of 0.08 or more grams of alcohol per 210 liters of breath

Testing – Level of Intoxication

There are a few methods of impairment testing which include breathalyzer, sobriety tests, and blood/urine tests

  • Sobriety Test: the Standard Field Sobriety Test (SFST) is a battery of 3 tests that include the horizontal gaze nystagmus (HGN) (side-to-side eye movements), the walk-and-turn, and the one-leg stand tests.
  • Breathalyzer: a portable breathalyzer test will be used to test alcohol content at the traffic stop
  • Blood/Urine test: a method of determining alcohol content in the body through a blood test or urine test

Testing – Proving a DUI

Although it is widely believed that a positive Breathalyzer test automatically proves a DUI charge, that is not always the case. Here are some common misconceptions…

  1. Refusing a breathalyzer test itself is not a crime! However, the DUI charges that are present will still stand.
  2. In addition, a law enforcement officer does not take your license privileges if you refuse a Breathalyzer test. You will instead have to make an appearance at the Department of Motor Vehicles where your case will be reviewed.
  3. You do not automatically lose your license with a DUI charge. It is crucial that you consult with a Melbourne DUI attorney such as “Smith & Eulo” ASAP as you only have 10 days to contest your charge. If the necessary evidence is presented, you may still be allowed to hold your driver’s license.
  4. And finally, if you choose to take the Breathalyzer test and pass, there is still a chance for the DUI charge to proceed further. Likely, law enforcement officers will choose to use the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration guidelines when determining your hazard level as a driver. Some of these indicators include…
    1. Erratic behavior/driving
    2. Inability to walk in a straight line, and
    3. Slurred speech


Unlike other crimes, first-time offenders can face up to 6 months in jail. If the BAC levels are above 0.15, then they can face up to 9 months in jail. Listed below are possible penalties for Driving Under the Influence in the state of Florida depending on the number of convictions

First Conviction

  • A fine between $500 and $1000
  • Up to 6 months in jail
  • Up to 1 year of probation
  • Vehicle impoundment for 10 days

Second Conviction

  • A fine between $500 and $1000
  • Up to 9 months in jail
  • Ignition Interlock program enrollment for 1 year
  • Vehicle impoundment for 30 days
  • 1 year license suspension

Third Conviction

  • Third-degree felony
  • A fine between $2000 and $5000
  • Up to 5 years in prison
  • Ignition interlock program enrollment for 2 years
  • Vehicle impoundment for 90 days minimum
  • License revoked for 10 years minimum

Fourth Conviction

  • Third-degree felony
  • A fine of up to $2000
  • Up to 5 years in prison
  • Ignition interlock program – minimum of 6 months
  • Vehicle impoundment for 90 days minimum
  • License revoked permanently


In the state of Florida, those who are convicted of a DUI must fill out the Fr-44 form for your insurance company which requires a policy with 100/300/50 coverage for 3 years.

$100,000 of coverage for bodily injury liability per person; $300,000 for bodily injury liability per accident, and $50,000 for property damage liability.

Hardship License

Has your license been suspended, but you still need to use it for necessary matters? Speak to your attorney to possibly obtain a hardship license. This limited license will give you the opportunity for day-to-day necessary transportation, however, it does have very heavy restrictions. If you believe this is for you, it is imperative that you contact an attorney who specializes in DUI charges such as Smith & Eulo.

Contact an Experienced Melbourne, FL DUI Attorney Today

As referenced in this article, DUI charges are no joke and can have a significant impact on your personal, work, and financial life. To ensure that you get the most positive outcome for your case, consult with the qualified Melbourne DUI lawyers at Smith & Eulo Law Firm.

With over 100 years of experience with DUI cases, our lawyers are extremely familiar with the inner workings of the Melbourne judicial system. Your future is important!

If you or your loved one find themselves in a situation where you are being accused of a DUI? Call us right away at 321-473-3621 to speak with a qualified legal professional or fill out the contact form on this page. We’re available 24/7, we offer free initial consultation and payment plans. In addition to our Melbourne office, we have offices in the following cities across the state of Florida:

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