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Operating Under the Influence - OUI

If you’ve been charged with operating under the influence of liquor (“OUI”), it is important that you speak to a qualified Massachusetts OUI attorney. Attorney Sam Zaganjori is an experienced OUI attorney that will fight for you. He is a Woburn-based OUI attorney that represents OUI clients all over eastern Massachusetts.

Massachusetts OUI Defense

Laws regarding operating under the influence are complex, especially to someone who is being charged with OUI for the first time. Under Massachusetts law, a driver is under the influence of liquor if (1) their ability to safely operate a motor vehicle is reduced by the use of alcohol or (2) their blood-alcohol concentration (“BAC”) is .08% or higher. A driver’s BAC is usually determined when that person takes a breathalyzer test after being arrested. It is important to understand that a breathalyzer result over .08 does not necessarily mean that a case is lost. Breathalyzer results can be challenged in a number of ways. Police officers must follow strict procedures when they give someone a breathalyzer test. A failure to follow these procedures can result in test results being excluded at trial. Also, the machine itself must be maintained in accordance with certain guidelines. A police department’s failure to properly maintain a breathalyzer machine can also be a basis to exclude the test results. In any case involving unfavorable breathalyzer results, it is very important that the OUI criminal defense attorney carefully review the facts and circumstances of the test and, whenever possible, attack the results with pretrial motions and at trial.

OUI cases often involve so-called “field sobriety tests.” Police officers use these procedures at the scene of a motor vehicle stop to determine if the driver might be impaired. Many commonly-used field sobriety tests are inadmissible at trial. Others can be shown to be unreliable. It is important for an OUI attorney to be able to challenge the reliability of field sobriety tests at trial.

An OUI case can have serious consequences for the person charged. The punishment for a first-time OUI is typically a year of probation, a time-consuming alcohol education program, a 45-day loss of license and substantial court fees. For people with prior OUI convictions, the punishments are much more severe. It is very important that an OUI defendant and their attorney explore all options, including taking the case to trial.

Loss of License

For first-time offenders, failing a breath test typically results in an immediate 30-day loss of license. A refusal to take the breath test can result in a 6-month loss of license. These punishments are even harsher for people with prior OUI cases. These “administrative suspensions” are separate from the court-ordered license loss that occurs when someone is convicted of OUI.

Experienced Massachusetts OUI Lawyer

Sam Zaganjori is an experienced Woburn OUI lawyer. He has handled OUI cases all over Middlesex County. He is ready to zealously defense any person charged with OUI.

The penalties for OUI are significant and potentially life-altering. Court-ordered probation and the alcohol education program can be burdensome and costly. The license suspension alone can interfere with a person’s ability to work or attend school.

Because the consequences can be substantial, it is very important that an OUI attorney be willing to aggressively defend an OUI case, including taking the case to trial. Attorney Zaganjori is a seasoned trial attorney who will dedicate himself to giving the client the best possible chance of winning at trial. He will prepare the client for trial, interview potential witnesses and go over the prosecution’s evidence in painstaking detail. He will consult with the client about whether to have a trial before a jury or a “jury-waived” trial before a judge.

Massachusetts Driver’s License Reinstatement

Attorney Zaganjori will work to get a client’s license restored as quickly as possible. Under certain circumstances, Massachusetts law allows for a hardship license (also known as a “Cinderella” license). A hardship license allows someone with a suspended license to drive during certain times of day for work or other RMV-approved purposes. If a client is placed on probation and receives a court-ordered license suspension, he can quickly apply for a hardship license with the Registry of Motor Vehicles. Attorney Zaganjori will assist the client with the process of obtaining a hardship license.

Massachusetts law does not allow for the issuance of a hardship license during a period of suspension resulting from a breath test refusal. However, if the client is acquitted at trial, the law allows the client to immediately bring a motion to reinstate their driver’s license. Attorney Zaganjori will bring the motion immediately upon acquittal in order to have the client’s license restored as quickly as possible.

Contact a Woburn OUI Attorney at 781-496-2848.