Drink and Drug Driving

If you’ve been charged with drink or drug driving, the right choice of lawyer can have a significant impact on the result. You’ve come to the right place.

If you’ve been charged with drink or drug driving, the right choice of lawyer can have a significant impact on the result. You’ve come to the right place.

Last updated

30 September 2023

Reading time

2 minutes

Drink and Drug Driving

If you’ve been charged with drink or drug driving, the right choice of lawyer can have a significant impact on the result. You’ve come to the right place.

Last updated

30 September 2023

Reading time

2 minutes

Is drink driving a criminal offence?

No, it’s not. It’s a traffic offence, and any conviction appears on your traffic history only.

Drink and drug driving offences are becoming more and more common, as police frequently intercept vehicles for random or targeted breath and saliva testing. Inevitably, the results are hard to argue against, which then means you must face court to be sentenced for the charge and face the loss of your licence.

Sentencing for drink and drug driving charges

There are a number of factors which are out of your control, such as which court your charge is heard at, or which Magistrate hears your case on the day. But what you can control is who your lawyer is. With our expert advice and submissions, you have the best chance to receive the minimum penalty.

Drink driving lawyers — why you shouldn’t represent yourself

The minimum periods of disqualification are all set in stone and there is nothing the Magistrate or your lawyer can do to reduce them. So why use a lawyer then? Because you aren’t guaranteed to get the minimum. Our job is to ensure that you receive the minimum disqualification, as well as the minimum penalty.

To achieve this, we use our connections with facilitators of road safety programs such as QTOP, as well as forensic psychologists and psychiatrists, and piece them together with personal references and carefully crafted submissions to the court. If you’re concerned about a conviction on your traffic history, such as registered Doctors or Nurses, or if you have plans to travel overseas to countries such as Canada and the UK, then we also address this to ensure that your future is not jeopardised by a mistake.

Why you should choose George Criminal Lawyers

We have over a decade of experience in representing clients charged with drink and drug driving from the lowest end of the scale, right up to some of the highest readings the courts have seen. Our primary goal is to ensure that your licence is disqualified for the shortest possible period, and any punishment is reduced to take into account your personal situation. If you’re a repeat offender and looking at jail time, then we will ensure that simply doesn’t happen to you.

Frequently asked questions

Can I apply for a work licence?2023-09-30T13:57:38+10:00

The criteria you must meet is as follows:

  • For drink driving charges, your reading must be under 0.15%
  • You must have an open licence
  • You can’t have lost your licence in the past 5 years for a similar offence or because of an accumulation of demerit points
  • You must also need your licence to work — it’s not enough that it’s inconvenient getting to and from work. You have to be able to demonstrate extreme financial hardship if you’re not allowed to drive.

For drug driving charges (driving with relevant drug present in saliva), there’s no percentage to worry about. It’s either in your saliva and you can apply, or you’re charged with being under the influence of a drug, which means you can’t apply.

To get advice on whether you are eligible and to assist you applying, check out our Work Licences page or contact us.

Why do I need a lawyer?2023-09-30T13:55:48+10:00

There’s no guarantee you will receive the minimum disqualification, or the lowest possible penalty. If you’re happy to spend extra months off the road or pay higher fines, then go for it. Otherwise, give us a call and we will help you out.

Will I need to install an interlock?2023-09-30T13:58:52+10:00

The interlock program applies to anyone who is convicted of any of the following offences:

  • Driving under the influence of alcohol
  • Drink driving with a blood/breath alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.10 or more
  • Failing to provide a blood/breath specimen for analysis
  • Dangerous driving while affected by alcohol
  • 2 or more drink driving offences (regardless of the reading) within 5 years
How long will I lose my licence for?2023-09-30T13:59:32+10:00

This depends on your reading, whether you’re on an open licence or not, and any prior history you might have. Generally, you will lose your licence for a minimum of:

  • 1 month for drug driving or low range drink driving (0.05-0.099)
  • 3 months for mid-range drink driving (0.1-0.149)
  • 6 months for high-range drink driving or driving under the influence of dugs (0.15 and higher)

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