Knoxville, TN- At least half of the 1.5 million Americans arrested for DUI in the U.S. each year will not learn their lesson. The consequences of a first-time DUI will not be enough for many Tennesseans to realize the mistake they are making by driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol. So, some first-time DUI offenders find themselves facing a second DUI charge.

If you are facing a second or third DUI charge, you need to speak to a DUI lawyer in Tennessee immediately to discuss your charges and the possible defense strategies you should explore. After examining the body of evidence they will decide if you should accept a plea bargain or take your case to court.

Past studies have found that nearly half of all first-time DUI offenders will repeat their offense and face a second. Some people even face their third, fourth or even fifth DUI charge. The money spent on legal fees and fines along with the loss of their driver’s license is enough to discourage them from repeating their mistake.

A conviction for your first DUI in Tennessee carries a penalty of 48 hours to 11 months in jail, depending on the circumstances of your arrest. You will also have to pay fines a low as $350 up to $1,500 and will lose your license for up to one year. That’s just for a first DUI, so you can imagine the consequences for a second are much steeper. Jail time jumps to 45 days in jail; fines increase to a minimum of $650; and license revocation for at least two years.

What’s more you may be required to install an ignition interlock device in your car. These devices measure the alcohol concentration in your breath and prevents your car from starting if you are close to or above the legal limit, which is .08 in Tennessee. The costs of an ignition interlock are on top of all the other fines, program fees and other financial penalties associated with a DUI.

But the consequences of first or second DUI go beyond the criminal consequences. A DUI conviction can impact a person’s job and their personal lives. They may be unable to pursue the job of their choice because of their record and can expect to pay exorbitant insurance premiums.

If you are facing your second DUI because you have a problem with drug or alcohol addiction, there are sometime sentencing options that can help you conquer your habit. Such alternatives may also lower your penalties if you can’t avoid a conviction.

Drunken or drugged driving is mistake far too many people make, but there are ways to minimize the consequences of such a mistake. The first step is to retain a DUI lawyer in Knoxville to review your case and determine the best way to approach your defense. USAttorneys can connect you with an attorney near your location to provide you with a vigorous defense so you won’t feel the pain of your DUI for years.