There are many reasons Florida residents should take the drunk driving charges that are made against them seriously. Aside from the embarrassment that they may experience after their arrests, they should be aware that convictions for drunk driving crimes may result in the loss of their licenses, the imposition of significant fines, and even periods of incarceration. In some cases, individuals who are fighting drunk driving charges may have defenses that they can assert to overcome their alleged crimes.
One category of defenses that can serve the needs of drunk driving defendants is affirmative defenses. An affirmative defense effectively admits that a driver had alcohol in their system at the time of their arrest and does not deny that fact. Rather, an affirmative defense provides an explanation for why a person chose to drive when they had alcohol in their system.
An example of an affirmative defense to a drunk driving charge is duress. If someone has consumed alcohol and is then threatened with violence or injury, they may elect to drive away in order to avoid the threats made against them. Another affirmative defense is involuntary intoxication, which may happen when a person consumes alcohol without realizing it, such as when they are given a drink that they believe is unadulterated but is actually made with alcohol.
Affirmative defenses are not always easy to prove at trial but can be useful for individuals who wish to fight the damaging drunk driving charges that have been made against them. Different affirmative defenses may apply to unique cases and readers may want to seek legal guidance to better prepare themselves for their own drunk driving trials.