DRINKING AND DRIVING

Policeman giving a breathalyzer to a driver who caused a car accident, panorama

DRIVING UNDER THE INFLUENCE

Drinking and driving cases represent a considerable part of the caseload we handle annually.

When you are facing charges of driving while impaired, or driving with over 80 mg of alcohol per 100 ml blood (over the legal limit), we strongly recommend you to be represented by a lawyer specialized in the field. Only an expert lawyer in drinking and driving cases will have the knowledge to assess your case and tell you what are your possibilities in negociations with a prosecutor or at trial. 

For this type of offense, is important to have a lawyer analyze your case and consider your side of the story in order to determine all the options available to you.

POSSIBLE DEFENSES IN CASES OF DRINKING AND DRIVING

a) The defenses under the Charter

In drunk driving offenses, police officers have several rules to abide by : with regards to the interception of the vehicle, the analysis of the symptoms, the arrest of the individual, the collection of breath sample or blood sample and the delays during the procedure.

Our lawyers will be able to determine if all these obligations were followed, as well as ensure that all the evidence necessary for the evaluation of the file was submitted by the Crown prosecutor during the appearance. If that is not the case, the lawyer will take the necessary steps in order to obtain disclosure of the missing evidence.

If the police have failed in their duties, the lawyer will be able to explain to you in length what a trial entails and assess your chances of success.

It is erroneous to assume that because you blew over the legal limit, you have no chance of being acquitted. Rather, each case should be evaluated individually in order to assess your chances of success at trial.

b) The defense based on the elements constituting the offense

In some cases, it will be possible for your lawyer to raise a defense based on the lack of symptoms usually observed by the police officer when a person is driving under the influence. Those symptoms are necessary for you to be found guilty of such offense. It will be often lead to a credibility debate, which will be assessed during a trial.

c) The defense based on the proper functioning or the correct use of the machine

In some cases, it is also possible to attack the proper functioning of the breathalizer or its use. This defense is  complex as it often requires the intervention of an expert.

REFUSAL TO COMPLY

When a person fails or refuses to comply with a demand made by the police officer to provide a breath sample or a blood sample, he commits the infraction of refusal.

Call us to evaluate whether you might have a defense.

CARE OR CONTROL OF A VEHICLE

Many people hold erroneous beliefs with regards to the care or control infraction, notably to be sitting in a vehicle when impaired while the engine is turned off. The law has recently clarified the elements to consider in order to declare a person guilty of having the care or control of a vehicle while impaired by alcohol or a drug.

Consult a lawyer specialized in the field in order to find out your chances of being acquitted of such an offense.