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Drink Driving Offences

Since 1996, the firm has acted on behalf of people charged with drink driving offences, with our Principal, Ms. Manolakos, appearing regularly at Newtown Local Court, Burwood Local Court, the Downing Centre, Kogarah Local Court, Sutherland Local Court and other courts across Sydney and throughout New South Wales.

At CM Lawyers, we aim for the best possible outcome for our clients in the shortest time feasible. Through solid preparation and decades of experience, we are able to provide realistic advice about your charges and legal defence, where necessary, in order to help you avoid criminal conviction or the loss of your licence.

Our solicitors are able to assist you with drink driving charges in Sydney and New South Wales relating to high-range PCA, mid-range PCA and low-range PCA. We are able to do this in a manner that is both cost-effective and timely, obtaining the best possible results for you.

Find out more about drink driving offences in NSW below.

Drink Driving Offences: First Time Offender/Section 10

A section 10 is a special discretionary power that the Magistrate hearing your matter can exercise. A Section 10 dismisses the drink driving charge and avoids a criminal record for the person offending.  The magistrate may also attach a condition to a Section 10, such as a bond or a fine.

Obtaining a Section 10 dismissal for your drink driving offence depends on the circumstances surrounding your matter. It is generally easier to obtain a Section 10 for a low-range Prescribed Concentration of Alcohol (PCA) drink driving charge than a high-range drink driving charge. Other factors may influence the likelihood of obtaining a Section 10, such as your previous driving record and/or your criminal record.

Drink Driving Offences: Low Range PCA

A low-range PCA is categorised as a blood alcohol level between 0.05 and 0.079. Certain factors may influence the Magistrate’s sentencing, including whether or not you have been convicted for any level of a PCA-related offence in the five years prior to the matter. Whilst gaol time is unlikely, being charged with a low-range PCA is still regarded as a serious matter.Penalties for a low-range PCA include:

  • A fine of up to $1,100 for a first offence, of up to $2,200 for a second or subsequent offence.
  • An automatic disqualification of your licence for up to six months – this can be reduced to a period of a minimum of three months if it is a first time offence. For a second or subsequent offence, there is an automatic disqualification of 12 months. However, a Magistrate has the discretion to reduce this period to a minimum of three months.

Drink Driving Offences: Mid Range PCA

A mid-range PCA is categorised as a blood alcohol level between 0.08 and 0.149. There are certain factors that may influence the magistrate who is sentencing you, including whether or not you have been convicted for any level of a PCA-related offence in the 5 years prior to the matter.

There are a number of penalties the Magistrate hearing your matter may impose on you for a mid-range PCA. These include:

  • A fine up to $2,200 for a first offence, or up to $3,300 for a second or subsequent offence.
  • A maximum gaol sentence of 9 months for a first offence or 12 months for a second or subsequent offence.
  • An automatic disqualification of your licence for 12 months. The Magistrate can reduce this to a period of a minimum of 6 months for a first time offence. For a second or subsequent offence, there is an automatic disqualification of 3 years; however, a Magistrate has the discretion to reduce this period to a minimum of 12 months.

Drink Driving Offences: High Range PCA

A high-range PCA is categorised as a blood alcohol level of 0.15 or higher. There are certain factors that may influence the magistrate who is sentencing you, including whether or not you have been convicted for any level of a PCA-related offence in the 5 years prior to the matter. Being charged with a high-range PCA is a serious matter, with penalties that include:

  • A fine up to $3,300 for a first offence, or up to $5,500 for a second or subsequent offence.
  • A maximum gaol sentence of 18 months for a first offence or 2 years for a second or subsequent offence.
  • An automatic disqualification of your licence for three years. The Magistrate can reduce this to a period of a minimum of 12 months for a first time offence. For a second or subsequent offence, there is an automatic disqualification of 5 years; however, a Magistrate has the discretion to reduce this period to a minimum of 2 years.

Contact the team at CM Lawyers today to see how our solicitors can help you with your drink driving charge.