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Kentucky's Per Se provision

Kentucky has its own set of laws that govern how the legal system treats drunk driving charges. One element of Kentucky's DUI law that is frequently misunderstood is the "Illegal Per Se" provision that significantly reduces the burden of proof on law enforcement for DUI charges. DUI charges are not something to take lightly and may be punished harshly.

Under the Per Se provision, a prosecutor must only present proof of blood or breath alcohol content of at least 0.08. Also, it is important to note that the test must be administered within two hours of the defendant operating the vehicle. Under this provision, it is not necessary for the prosecution to prove any other kind of impairment. For many prosecutors, this creates a wide open door for picking low-hanging fruit DUI convictions. These kinds of convictions may saddle drivers who may on the threshold of 0.08 but not practically impaired with hefty consequences.

It is also worth noting that in this case, not all drivers are treated equally. For instance, a driver under the age of 21 is considered Per Se impaired at only 0.08 blood or breath alcohol content. That is an exceptionally low threshold, as anyone who has ever had a hard cider can attest. Likewise, licensed commercial drivers may be considered impaired at only 0.04, and may be restricted from driving their rig for 24 hours if they are found to have any alcohol in their system at all.

If you are facing DUI charges in Kentucky, it is vital to consider professional guidance from an experienced attorney. These kinds of charges can carry harsh penalties that may affect you for many years and cost a great deal of money in fines and increased insurance premiums. The representation of an experienced attorney ensures that your case is heard fairly and that your rights remain protected in the process.

Source: Commonwealth of Kentucky, "DUI Laws in Kentucky," accessed March 03, 2017

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