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DUI Glossary

Absorption Rate: The rate at which alcohol enters your bloodstream and creates intoxication. Your absorption rate depends greatly on factors like weight and metabolism, and everyone’s absorption rate is different.

BAC: Blood Alcohol Content, or how much alcohol is in a person’s bloodstream. Driving with a BAC over 0.08% (or 0.04% for commercial drivers) is considered “driving under the influence” and is against the law.

Chemical Test: A test used to determine your BAC. A chemical test gauges the concentration of alcohol in your blood, urine, or your breath. Blood tests are the most reliable of the three methods, but a good Tampa DUI attorney can call the accuracy of all three into question.

DUI: Short for driving under the influence, DUI is the act of driving while impaired by alcohol or with a BAC over 0.08%, and is illegal in Florida and throughout the United States.

DUI School: These classes, offered by the Florida Safety Council, teach students the dangers of drug and alcohol abuse and the consequences of drunk driving, and are often required as part of sentencing for a DUI conviction.

Felony: Any crime that is punishable by more than one year in state prison. In Florida, you can be charged with a felony for your third DUI within ten years.

FST: Field Sobriety Tests (FSTs) are a set of physical tests administered by a police officer to establish probable cause for a chemical test during a traffic stop for a suspected DUI. FSTs include the one-leg-stand test, the walk-and-turn test, and Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus.

Implied Consent: Florida is one of the many states that have Implied Consent laws, which state that simply by possessing a driver’s license, you automatically consent to chemical testing and a police officer does not have to ask permission. Due to these laws, refusing a breath or blood test can have penalties such as a suspended license.

Misdemeanor: Any crime punishable by less than a year of jail time. In Tampa and the rest of Florida, most DUI situations are prosecuted as misdemeanor offenses.

Per Se: Laws that pertain to driving with a 0.08% BAC or above. It is possible to be arrested for DUI per se even if you are not visibly impaired, as long as your BAC is above the legal limit.

Reckless Driving: Driving in an especially dangerous manner, increasing your odds of causing harm to property, another person, or yourself.

Revocation: More serious than a standard license suspension, a license revocation is an indefinite suspension with no guarantee of reinstatement once your time is up. Your license may be revoked for more serious charges such as felony DUI or DUI with prior convictions.