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What is the Difference Between a DUI and DWI?

27 July, 2018

Ever wondered the difference between driving under the influence and driving when impaired?  Nassau Country Lawyers have the scoop:   If you have not already guessed DUI is an acronym for driving under the influence whilst DWI stances for driving while intoxicated (and in some cases impaired).  These terms tend to mean the same thing, but can also have difference meanings depending on the state you are pulled over in.   Essentially DUI and DWI mean the same thing: that a driver is committing a crime by operating a vehicle under the influence of alcohol or drugs, so that they are endangering themselves and others.  The basic difference is:   A DUI refers to behavior, and a DWI refers to blood alcohol content (in most states you’re driving is charged as impaired if your blood-alcohol concentration is over the legal limit of 0.08)   IN BOTH CASES THE DRIVER IS BEING CHARGED FOR A SERIOUS OFFENSE WHICH WILL HAVE A NEGATIVE RESULT ON THEIR LIFE. DUI and DWIS can be ordered if drivers are driving under the influence of the below:

  • Alcohol
  • Recreational drugs
  • Prescription drugs
  DRUGGED DRIVING IS IMPAIRED DRIVING An officer will most likely suspect drug use if you appear to be impaired by an arresting officer, but your breathalyzer test shows that you are not under the influence of alcohol. In this circumstance, an officer holds the right to call a Drug Recognition Expert (DRE) to the scene.  The DRE officer will then carry out a series of tests to confirm if you have been using drugs.  If these series of tests prove that you have been using drugs whilst driving, then you will be charges with DWI or DUI depending on the state you are pulled over in. Please note prescription drugs still count towards a DUI charge!