Reducing A DUI Charge To Impaired Driving

For Utah drivers caught drinking under the influence of alcohol, a reduced charge of “impaired driving” presents a good option for resolving a DUI case. A charge of impaired driving does not carry the harsh penalties under Utah law associated with a Utah DUI charge. Unlike a DUI conviction, the reduced charge of impaired driving avoids the suspension of the driver’s license. 

Under Utah statutory law, an impaired driving charge is not filed as an independent charge in a court of law. To negotiate a plea to impaired driving, a driver must first be charged with DUI under the Utah DUI laws.   

An impaired driving plea can arise under two scenarios: 

  • Completion of probation: A driver can have a misdemeanor DUI conviction reduced upon the successful completion of court-ordered probation requirements. 
  • Negotiations with the prosecutor: A driver can immediately enter the plea with the agreement of the prosecutor and the court. 

Because a negotiated impaired driving plea depends on the prosecutor’s approval and not on any enumerated statutory elements, there is no definitive formula for determining whether a person will be offered the plea. Prosecutors are more likely to agree to the plea for first offenses combined with a lower breath or blood-alcohol reading.  

If you’re a Utah driver who has been accused of driving under the influence, consult an experienced DUI attorney to evaluate your case. If the facts of your case favor an impaired driving plea, a skilled attorney will negotiate a plea with the prosecutor on your behalf. The prosecutor may be more likely to agree to a plea if you are represented by an attorney during negotiations. 

The skilled attorneys at Larsen, Larsen, Nash & Larsen have a wealth of experience with DUI cases and plea bargains and will fight for a reduction of your DUI charge.

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