If my DUI court date is coming up in 2 weeks, can I serve time in lieu of paying a fine?

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If my DUI court date is coming up in 2 weeks, can I serve time in lieu of paying a fine?

I have no lawyer; I’m just going to ask the judge if I can do that, or could he have me do both?

Asked on July 29, 2015 under Criminal Law, North Carolina

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

The answer is yes, you can ask the judge if he will impose an imprisonment-only punishment, but the judge is under no obligation to do so, and could easily impose a fine instead, or even both. Judges tend to take DUI cases very seriously, and do not look to accommodate the impaired or drunk driver, so it is unlikely that the judge will take your request seriously; it is much more likely that he will follow the general sentencing guideliness given the circumstances, any prior DUIs, etc. You are urged to retain an attorney to help you--DUI can be very serious, and an experienced lawyer will greatly increase you chance of a good (or least "less bad") outcome.


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