Can I Get Kicked Out of School After an NC DWI?
A conviction for driving while impaired (DWI) can carry serious penalties, including high fines, possible jail time, loss of your driver’s license, and more. Such a conviction can also carry unexpected consequences that can be even more damaging to your future. This is particularly worrisome for students who are trying to get a degree and will soon be applying for jobs.
If you’re in college and charged with DWI, don’t expect the prosecution to be lenient. Drunk driving charges are prosecuted aggressively, so you need someone on your side fighting for you to get a fair result. To schedule a free, initial evaluation of your case with an NC DWI attorney, call Randall & Stump, Criminal Defense Attorneys today at (980) 237-4579. We can also be reached via the online form.
Understanding North Carolina’s DWI Laws
In NC, you can be charged with drunk driving if you have a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .08% or higher. However, you should be aware that the police do not actually need to know your BAC in order to charge you with DWI. In addition, you can be charged with such an offense if you have any intoxicating substance in your blood, including marijuana or prescription drugs.
For college students, there is another very important exception you should be aware of. North Carolina is a zero-tolerance state for people under the age of 21. This means that you can be charged with DWI if you have any alcohol in your system at all when driving a car.
What Impacts Will a DWI Have on Your Education?
Many college students worry about how drunk driving charge could impact their college career. One common question many ask themselves after an arrest is, “will I get kicked out of school?” The good news is that you are unlikely to get asked to leave your college or university for one drunk driving conviction, but that could change depending on whether you have prior convictions, or there are other circumstances unique to your case.
Ultimately, whether or not you are expelled will depend on the school’s policies pertaining to alcohol use and criminal convictions. While expulsion may be unlikely, the following consequences are perhaps more realistic:
- Loss of financial aid – Many scholarships specify that they can be revoked in the event of a criminal conviction, including that for DWI. This can wind up costing you thousands of dollars.
- Probation – At some schools, a DWI conviction can result in getting placed on probation. This means that you face expulsion if you have further trouble with the law, or if you subsequently violate your school’s rules or policies.
- Loss of driving privileges – When you are convicted of DWI in North Carolina, your driver’s license will be revoked. If you live off-campus, this could make getting to class much more difficult. You may be able to get restricted driving privileges, but you will likely be limited to driving to and from lectures and other class-related activities.
How a Charlotte Criminal Defense Lawyer Can Help
An experienced NC DWI lawyer will fight for you to obtain a fair result after a drunk driving arrest threatens your education and standing at school. The case against you may not be as strong as the prosecution wants you to believe. Your attorney can challenge their evidence, argue against the basis of your arrest, and make sure your rights remain protected. Even if a conviction can’t be avoided, your lawyer can fight to make sure the penalties imposed by the judge are fair.
An experienced DWI attorney can also help you navigate the disciplinary process at your school. Again, policies and procedures aren’t always as clear and straightforward as they may appear. A defense lawyer can make sure your DWI charges don’t ruin your future.
Contact a Charlotte DWI Defense Lawyer Today
Don’t leave your future in the hands of the prosecution. At Randall & Stump, Criminal Defense Attorneys, we know what’s at stake. Our team will fight for your rights and protect your future. If you’d like to learn more about how we can help you, contact us for a free consultation by calling (980) 237-4579, or by reaching out through the online form.