Difference between DWI and DUI 

 July 16, 2013

By  LMW Attorneys

Being charged with a DUI or a DWI is serious business. Both involve driving a car while under the influence of either alcohol or drugs. In the case of drugs, the drug involved does not need to be an illegal one. Even a normal medical prescription from your doctor or an over-the-counter drug such as Nyquil can subject you to the possibility of an arrest.

If the substance affects your ability to operate a vehicle safely, you can be found “under the influence.” DUI and DWI laws can also apply to the operation of a boat. Even riding a bicycle while intoxicated is illegal.

With either charge, the police officer has a reasonable belief that the driver in question is not fit to operate a vehicle safely. In some states, a driver may be arrested and charged even though the driver’s blood alcohol levels do not meet the minimum standards.

Many people are often confused when they hear the terms DUI and DWI. Using the first letters from other words forms these terms. In this case of these two terms, DUI stands for driving under the influence (of alcohol) and DWI stands for driving while intoxicated (alcohol or drugs).

Depending on the state in which you are charged, both terms can be interchangeable. In other words, under the eyes of the law, they are considered equal. Florida is such a state and the legal term used there is DUI. If you are found guilty, the consequences can be very serious.

If you have been arrested and charged with a DUI, you are probably filled with remorse and are contemplating what you may do in order to get your life back to normal.

Being charged with such an offense brings with it overwhelming uncertainty and anxiety. Those charged most often feel helpless. Considering the fact that being arrested may involve a visit to the police station following a humiliating field sobriety test, those feelings are to be expected.

Consultation with a skilled Florida defense or DUI attorney should be a priority. Time limits exist on possible avenues to overturn or lessen a DUI charge. If you are the one faced with this situation, do not delay in seeking help.