Can you get a DUI if your BAC is below the legal limit?

| Jun 11, 2021 | Criminal Defense |

Memorial Day kicked off the summer season in Gulfport and by now many people are swamped with graduation parties, holiday celebrations, weddings, trips to the beach, block parties and all the other social events that often take place during the summer months. Of course, alcohol is oftentimes served at these events and when a person drinks responsibly can add to the festive atmosphere. However, summer fun can be ruined if while driving home from an event you are pulled over by the police and accused of drunk driving.

“Common law” DUI

Under Mississippi law, a person cannot drive under the influence of intoxicating liquor. This means that a person in Mississippi can get a DUI even if a blood-alcohol test was not taken or if their BAC is below the legal limit. To prove common law DUI the prosecution bears the burden of showing that the motorist was driving in a state of intoxication that, as is commonly understood, reduced their ability for clarity and control.

DUI with a BAC 0.08% or more

This type of DUI is what many people picture when they think of DUI. In Mississippi, as is the case in all other states in the nation, a person cannot drive if their BAC is 0.08% or above if they are 21. If they are under the legal drinking age, they cannot drive with a BAC of 0.02% or above and if they are operating a commercial vehicle, they cannot drive with a BAC of 0.04% or above. In such cases, the prosecution bears the burden of proving the breath test instrument was accurate, that the person performing the test was certified and that all proper procedures were followed when the test was given.

Learn more about DUI in Mississippi

It is important to understand that if you are arrested for DUI in Mississippi this does not automatically mean you will be convicted. The prosecution still carries the burden of proof. With the right help you can fight the odds. This post is for educational purposes only and does not contain legal advice. Our firm’s webpage on DUI may be of interest to those in Mississippi who want further information on this topic.