Getting charged with a first-time DUI in Nevada can be a daunting and overwhelming experience. The process involves multiple legal and administrative steps, and the consequences can be severe, including jail time, fines, license revocation, and mandatory education and treatment programs. If you are facing a DUI charge for the first time, you may have many questions and concerns about your rights, options, and legal defenses.

To help you navigate the legal system and understand the implications of a DUI-1st, we have compiled some key information and resources about the Nevada law, penalties, and defenses related to this offense. We also explain how a defense attorney can assist you in fighting the charges and protecting your interests.

What Should You Know About First-Time DUI Offenses in Nevada?

Can I go to jail for a DUI- 1st offense in Nevada?

One of the most common fears of people facing a DUI-1st is the possibility of going to jail. While this is a valid concern, the answer depends on several factors, including your prior criminal record and your blood alcohol concentration (BAC) at the time of your arrest.

Under Nevada law, a DUI-1st offense carries a potential jail sentence of 2 days to 6 months, plus fines ranging from $400 to $1,000, as well as mandatory license revocation, DUI school, and a victim impact panel. However, judges often suspend the jail sentence and grant probation or conditional discharge, provided you meet certain requirements, such as installing an ignition interlock device on your vehicle.

If you have prior DUIs, your sentence could be more severe, and you may face felony charges, especially if your prior conviction was within the last seven years. In addition, if your BAC was 0.18% or higher, you face additional penalties, such as an alcohol/drug dependency evaluation and possible treatment programs.

Do I lose my license if I receive a DUI-1st offense in Nevada?

Another major concern for DUI-1st defendants is the fear of losing their driver’s license. Unfortunately, in most cases, Nevada law requires the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) to impose a 185-day revocation of your license if you are arrested for DUI-1st. However, you may be eligible for a restricted license that allows you to drive to work, school, and other essential purposes if you install an ignition interlock device on your car.

You can also contest your license revocation at a DMV hearing, where you can argue that the police lacked probable cause to stop or arrest you or that your BAC was falsely or inaccurately measured. However, winning a DMV hearing can be challenging, and you only have a short window of time to request it (seven days from your arrest, or a few weeks longer for blood tests).

Can a defense attorney help me with my first-time DUI offense case?

Hiring a skilled and experienced DUI defense attorney can make a significant difference in the outcome of your case. A defense lawyer can provide you with legal advice, factual analysis, and strategic representation that can help you fight the charges or negotiate a favorable plea bargain.

Among the common defenses that a DUI attorney can use to challenge the prosecutor’s case are:

  • The police violated your constitutional rights by stopping or arresting you without probable cause or reasonable suspicion
  • The police failed to administer the field sobriety tests or breath test in accordance with proper protocols and standards
  • Your medical or physical condition, such as acid reflux or diabetes, caused a false positive BAC reading
  • The breathalyzer machine was not properly calibrated, maintained, or inspected, or the police did not follow the mandatory observation period
  • The prosecutor lacks sufficient evidence to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you were impaired or intoxicated while driving.

Can a DUI-1st be dismissed in Nevada?

While getting a DUI charge entirely dismissed is unlikely, it is possible in some cases, especially if the evidence against you is weak, unreliable, or inadmissible. Under Nevada law, prosecutors cannot offer a charge reduction or dismissal in DUI cases unless the evidence clearly warrants it.

However, you may be able to convince the prosecutor to reduce the DUI charge to reckless driving, which may carry less severe consequences and a lower social stigma. Alternatively, you can fight the charges at trial and challenge the prosecutor’s evidence and witnesses.

To learn more about the possible outcomes of a DUI-1st case, including plea bargaining, trial, and sentencing, you can refer to NRS 484C.400 and NRS 193.130.

In conclusion, a first-time DUI offense in Nevada carries significant legal ramifications. Understanding the laws, penalties, and defenses related to DUI-1st offenses can be challenging. Seeking the guidance of an experienced defense attorney can provide you with the best strategies to protect your rights and obtain the best possible outcome for your case. At ATAC LAW, we are committed to helping our clients navigate this process and providing them with the best possible legal representation. If you or someone you know is facing a first-time DUI charge, contact ATAC LAW today for a consultation.

Do you need a DUI attorney in Las Vegas?

If You’re Facing Charges, We’re Here To Help.


ATAC LAW LOGO GOLDCall us for help

We have answers for you

To learn more about DUI  in Las Vegas and how to get your DUI charge dismissed or to discuss a particular criminal case that you or someone you love is facing, Call ATAC Law firm for help to get your charges reduced or dismissed.

 Contact us for a FREE phone meeting to discuss your case with what people are calling the best criminal defense attorney in Las Vegas.

At ATAC, our Las Vegas team of lawyers is here to work with you to help you through your case.