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Cleveland DUI Defense Attorneys

Drunk Driving Carries Harsh and Lasting Penalties

A conviction for DUI/OVI reaches into every part of your life — your finances, your license, your employment, your reputation in the community and perhaps your freedom. Underage drivers, commercial drivers or drivers with prior convictions face even tougher consequences.

The Goldberg Law Firm fights drunk driving cases. We are prepared to go to trial to challenge the grounds for your arrest. We work to preserve your driving privileges. We make every effort to prevent a conviction or mitigate the long-term impact of a DUI arrest.

For a free initial consultation, call our Cleveland criminal defense lawyers at 216-592-8719 or 800-845-4710, or contact us online.

Cuyahoga County OVI Defense Lawyers

In 24 years of criminal defense practice, trial lawyer Michael J. Goldberg has handled countless cases of driving under the influence (DUI), also known in Ohio as operating a vehicle while impaired (OVI). He and his legal team provide the proven representation you need, regardless of your circumstances:

  • Even a first arrest for drunk driving can be punished by a few days in jail, license suspension, fines and other penalties, plus the criminal record and a steep increase in car insurance rates.
  • A second or third offense carries enhanced penalties. In addition to longer jail time and loss of license, you may be forced to put yellow DUI license plates on your car and install an ignition interlock.
  • Under-21 drivers and truck drivers (CDL license holders) can be charged at a lower rate of intoxication and face very serious driver's license sanctions. A second DUI conviction will essentially end a commercial driving career.
  • A fourth DUI/OVI is a felony crime punishable by serious prison time.

Aggressive Drunk Driving Defense in Northeast Ohio

Attorneys Michael Goldberg and Scott Kuboff know how to analyze the prosecution's case to challenge the evidence and cross-examine the arresting officer. He explores all defense angles: probable cause for the traffic stop, validity of field sobriety tests, the calibration and maintenance of the Breathalyzer and the officer's conduct throughout the process.

Through motions, hearings and trial, we will force the state to prove its case. By exploiting the flaws, Michael Goldberg has obtained acquittals, dismissal of charges, reduction of charges, deferred convictions and other favorable outcomes for his clients.

The potential penalties for driving under the influence depend on low test (.08 or more) versus high test (0.17 or more), prior convictions, age and aggravating factors.

Penalties for Misdemeanor OVI/DUI Offenses

 1st in 6 Years Low Test 1st in 6 Years Refusal* or High Test2nd in 6 Years Low Test2nd in 6 Years Refusal* or High Test3rd in 6 Years
Low Test
3rd in 6 Years
Refusal* or High Test
Degree of Offense M-1M-1M-1M-1Unclassified MisdemeanorUnclassified Misdemeanor
Jail Time3 days jail; or DIP. Up to 6 months6 days jail; or 3 days jail and DIP. Up to 6 months10 days jail up to 6 months20 days jail up to 6 months30 days jail up to 1 year60 days jail up to 1 year
Fines$375 - $1,075$375 - $1,075$525 - $1,625$525 - $1,625$850 - $2,750$850 - $2,750
TreatmentOptionalOptionalAssessment and treatment mandatoryAssessment
and treatment mandatory
Addiction program mandatoryAddiction
program mandatory
License SuspensionClass 5
(6 mos to 3 yrs)
Class 5
(6 mos to 3 yrs)
Class 4
(1 to 5 years)
Class 4
(1 to 5 years)
Class 3
(2 to 10 years)
Class 3
(2 to 10 years)
Driving PrivilegesAfter 15 daysAfter 15 daysAfter 45 daysAfter 45 daysAfter 180 daysAfter 180 days
Restricted PlatesOptionalPlates required for High TestRequiredRequiredRequiredRequired
InterlockOptionalOptionalRequired if alcohol related offense, otherwise optionalRequired if alcohol related offense, otherwise optionalRequired if alcohol related offense, otherwise optionalRequired if alcohol related offense, otherwise optional
Immobilization or ForfeitureNoNo90 days immobilization if registered to Defendant90 days immobilization if registered to DefendantForfeiture required if registered to DefendantForfeiture required if registered to Defendant

* With prior offense within 20 years

Penalties for Felony OVI/DUI Offenses

 4th/5th in 6 Years or 6th in 20 Years
Low Test
4th/5th in 6 Years
or 6th in 20 Years
Refusal*/High Test
2nd Felony OVI/DUI
in Lifetime
Low Test
2nd Felony OVI/DUI
in Lifetime
Refusal*/High Test
1st/2nd Felony OVI/DUI
in Lifetime
RC 2941.1413 Spec
Degree of OffenseF-4F-4F-3F-3F-4 (1st) / F-3 (2nd)
Incarceration60 days jail up to 1 year; or 60 days in prison with potential for additional 6 to
30 months
120 days jail up to 1 year; or 120 days in prison with potential for additional 6 to
30 months
60 days prison up to 5 years120 days prison up to 5 years60 days prison up to 5 years with an additional
1 to 5 years to run consecutive to underlying sentence
Fines$1,350 - $10,500$1,350 - $10,500$1,350 - $10,500$1,350 - $10,500$1,350 - $10,500
TreatmentAddiction program mandatoryAddiction program mandatoryAddiction program mandatoryAddiction program mandatoryAddiction program mandatory
License SuspensionClass 2
(3 yrs to life)
Class 2
(3 yrs to life)
Class 2
(3 yrs to life)
Class 2
(3 yrs to life)
Class 2
(3 yrs to life)
Driving PrivilegesAfter 3 yearsAfter 3 yearsAfter 3 yearsAfter 3 yearsAfter 3 years
Restricted PlatesRequiredRequiredRequiredRequiredRequired
InterlockRequired if alcohol related offense, otherwise optionalRequired if alcohol related offense, otherwise optionalRequired if alcohol related offense, otherwise optionalRequired if alcohol related offense, otherwise optionalRequired if alcohol
related offense, otherwise optional
ForfeitureForfeiture required
if registered to Defendant
Forfeiture required
if registered to Defendant
Forfeiture required if registered to DefendantForfeiture required
if registered to Defendant
Forfeiture required
if registered to
Defendant

* With prior within 20 years

Administrative License Suspension: Protecting Your Driving Privileges

The first thing that happens when you are arrested on suspicions of drunk driving is that your Ohio driver's license is suspended. This suspension is effective immediately and independent of the outcome of criminal charges of DUI/OVI. You can be subject to administrative license suspension (ALS) after failing or refusing a chemical test.

The length of suspension and eligibility for limited driving privileges depend on prior offenses within the past six years:

ALS Suspension for a Failed Chemical Test

 1st Offense2nd Offense3rd Offense4th or More
Suspension
Class E
(90 days)
Class C
(1 year)
Class B
(2 years)
Class A (3 years)
Driving PrivilegesAfter 15 daysAfter 30 daysAfter 180 daysAfter 3 years
Restricted PlatesOptionalOptionalOptionalRequired if alcohol-related, optional for drug-related
Interlock DeviceOptionalOptionalOptionalRequired if alcohol-related, optional if drug -related

ALS Suspension for Refusal of a Chemical Test

 1st Offense2nd Offense3rd Offense4th or More
Suspension
Class C
(1 year)
Class B
(2 years)
Class A
(3 years)
5 Years
Driving PrivilegesAfter 30 daysAfter 90 daysAfter 1 yearAfter 3 years
Restricted PlatesOptionalOptionalOptionalOptional
Interlock DeviceOptionalOptionalOptionalOptional

Our attorneys are knowledgeable about legitimate grounds for appealing license suspension such as lack of reasonable grounds for the traffic stop or failure to advise you of the consequences of refusing or submitting to the chemical test. You must appeal to the trial court within 30 days of your arrest to contest your ALS suspension. Don't delay in contacting an attorney.

We Get Results Because We Are Prepared to Go All the Way

There is no substitute for 24 years of legal knowledge and insights into the local court systems in Northeast Ohio. There is no substitute for a true trial attorney who can keep the prosecution honest and is not afraid to take your drunk driving case to a jury.

Our Cleveland DUI defense lawyer offers a free consultation for any criminal charges. Call The Goldberg Law Firm at 216-592-8719 or 800-845-4710, or contact us online.

Accused of a Serious Traffic Violation?
In addition to DUI/OVI, other traffic offenses can trigger jail time or license suspension. Before you plead guilty, talk to the attorneys of The Goldberg Law Firm to understand the potential consequences and your options. We will fight for you to avoid conviction or minimize the penalties for:

  • Driving while suspended
  • Fleeing or eluding police
  • Reckless driving
  • Hit-and-run (leaving the scene of an accident)
  • Other misdemeanor or felony traffic crimes

Contact Our Firm Today

THE GOLDBERG LAW FIRM
Lakeside Place
323 Lakeside Ave. West
Suite 450
Cleveland, OH 44113

Phone: 216-592-8719
Toll free: 800-845-4710
Fax: 216-781-6242
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The Goldberg Law Firm

Over 24 Years Experience Representing Persons in Ohio and Nationwide

The Goldberg Law Firm serves the Cleveland, Ohio, metro area and Northeast Ohio, including Cleveland, Parma, Akron, Lorain, Elyria, Euclid, Lakewood, Cleveland Heights, Cuyahoga Falls, Mentor, Strongsville, Berea, Broadview Heights, Brook Park, East Cleveland, Garfield Heights, Maple Heights, North Olmsted, North Royalton, Rocky River, Shaker Heights, Solon, Westlake, Painesville, Medina, Cuyahoga County, Summit County, Lorain County, Lake County and Medina County.

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