Attending college, particularly at one of Massachusetts’ prestigious schools such as Harvard or the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, can be exciting yet extremely stressful at the same time. For stress relief, many students attend parties, hang out at bars or visit other hot spots at which the serving of alcohol occurs. While there is nothing wrong with this, if they choose to drink and drive, they may face charges for operating under the influence. An OUI conviction can have serious consequences.
Did you know that an OUI can hurt your child’s college education? Some people may not realize that it can. Students can lose scholarships and their housing. Some may even find themselves expelled. Those whose schools allow them to finish their degrees may find obtaining professional licensing and jobs when finished impossible. For these and many other reasons, fighting an OUI charge is a must.
After being charged
The actions you and your child take after he or she has been charged with an OUI are critical. The sooner you start working on a defensive strategy, the better. Not all OUI charges result in conviction. There are several ways to fight such charges in order to achieve dismissal. For instance, you may question the results of sobriety testing. These tests are not always accurate. You may also question:
- Officer actions
- Potential procedural errors
- Probable cause or lack thereof
- Any other evidence offered
The goal is to poke holes in the prosecuting attorney’s case. By asking questions, information may come to light that will prove beneficial to your child’s situation.
Criminal and administrative consequences
The criminal consequences associated with an OUI conviction include jail time and fines. Of course, you cannot forget about the administrative consequences. When charged with OUI, losing one’s license, even if only temporarily, is the norm. The discussion over the future of your child’s driving privileges does not occur in criminal court. This is an administrative consequence handled by the Department of Transportation.
You can help protect your child and his or her future
No parent wants to see his or her child lose everything over one mistake — whether it was his or her child or the arresting officer that made a mistake. You can help protect your child by assisting him or her through both the criminal and administrative hearings. You do not have to do this alone. With the right team in your child’s corner, you can achieve the best possible.