Common Plea Bargains & Outcomes for a DUI in Washington

In Washington, you can face a maximum penalty of 365 days in jail and a $5,000 fine if you are found guilty of driving under the influence (DUI). If you are charged with a DUI in Washington, you may consider a plea bargain to avoid this penalty. Yet, there is no such thing as a one-size-fits-all plea bargain, and you need to consider the charge against you carefully before you propose or accept one. 

Veitch Ault Defense has a proven track record in Washington DUI cases. If you have been charged with a DUI in Washington, reach out to our law firm. We can review your case and help you determine if it is in your best interests to negotiate or approve a plea bargain. 

Plea Bargains You Can Use to Get Your DUI Charge Reduced in Washington

Many plea bargain options are available to defendants in DUI cases in Washington. These include:

1. Wet Reckless

If you accept a wet reckless charge, you plead guilty or no contest to reckless driving. In addition, it is noted on your criminal record that your offense involved the use of alcohol or drugs. With a wet reckless conviction, you face a maximum probationary period of two years. 

2. Dry Reckless

A dry reckless conviction is less serious than a wet reckless one. If you plead guilty or no contest to a dry reckless charge, you are convicted of reckless driving. Also, there is nothing added to your criminal record that indicates your conviction was related to alcohol or drug use.  

3. Exhibition of Speed

An exhibition of speed is considered a traffic violation. If you accept this charge, you are convicted of driving too fast to amuse others or get attention from bystanders. This is considered a form of reckless driving. 

To pursue a plea bargain, it pays to have a knowledgeable DUI defense attorney at your side. This lawyer knows the ins and outs of Washington’s DUI laws. The attorney can explain these laws to you and help you craft a plea bargain agreement accordingly. 

Best Outcomes for a DUI Plea Bargain in Washington

The best outcome for a DUI plea bargain may be any of the following charges:

  • Drinking alcohol in a vehicle
  • Drunk in public
  • Traffic violation

With any of these charges, the penalties are minor. On the other hand, getting a DUI reduced to any of these charges is rarely simple. With help from a DUI defense attorney, you can take the first step toward building a compelling argument to get your DUI charge removed or reduced. 

A DUI defense lawyer leaves no stone unturned in their efforts to help you contest your charge. The attorney considers the prosecutor’s case against you and how much evidence they have to support it. Then, the attorney can help you craft the best plea deal for a DUI. 

What Is the Best Plea Deal for a DUI?   

You can be charged with a DUI in Washington if you operate a vehicle while using drugs, alcohol, or both. A DUI is considered a form of negligent driving. The possible outcomes of a DUI charge include jail time, fines, and a suspension of your driver’s license. 

The best plea deal for a DUI allows you to get the charges against you reduced. In this scenario, you agree to plead guilty to a charge lesser than the one you originally faced. In exchange, you face a lesser penalty than the one that was initially proposed. 

At Veitch Ault Defense, we can teach you everything you need to know about DUI plea bargains and the possible outcomes associated with them. Our DUI defense attorney can take a look at the charges against you. Next, our lawyer can help you build a case to contest these charges in the hopes of getting them reduced or dropped. 

What Happens If You Plead Guilty to a DUI in Washington?

If you plead guilty to a DUI in Washington, you are admitting to driving recklessly, reckless endangerment, and other forms of negligence. At this point, you are convicted of a DUI. Your plea is entered on the record, and you are sentenced for your crime. 

It may be tempting to submit a guilty plea in the hopes of resolving your DUI case as quickly as possible. However, doing so can cause you to receive a jail sentence, fines, and other severe penalties. Comparatively, you can hire a Washington State DUI defense lawyer to advocate for you and make sure your legal rights are protected. 

With help from an experienced DUI defense lawyer in Washington, you can assess all of the legal options at your disposal. If you partner with an attorney that has a track record of success in DUI cases, you are well-equipped to achieve a favorable case result. Your attorney may encourage you to move forward with a plea bargain or to fight your DUI charge, which may help you avoid significant penalties. 

How Likely Is Jail Time for a DUI in Washington?

For a first-time DUI charge in Washington, you may face civil and criminal penalties. If you are a first-time offender, you may be convicted of a gross misdemeanor. This may allow you to avoid jail time and instead receive a license suspension, fine, or other penalties. 

If you refuse to take a breath test or do so and have a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.15 or higher, you can face a substantial DUI penalty, even if it is your first offense. Furthermore, you can face a steep DUI charge if you have previously been convicted of a DUI. In either of these scenarios, you may be subject to a jail sentence. 

A plea bargain represents a viable option to help you avoid jail time for a DUI in Washington. To determine if a plea bargain lines up with your best interests, it is paramount to consult with a DUI defense lawyer. You and your attorney can then determine the best course of action to deal with your DUI charge. 

What to Do to Contest a DUI Charge in Washington

Do not expect a DUI charge in Washington to disappear on its own. The charge can impact you now and in the future. If you are found guilty of a DUI, your conviction can affect your ability to get housing, pursue your dream job, and other opportunities to enjoy your life to the fullest extent.  

As soon as you are charged with a DUI, meet with an attorney. Find a DUI lawyer that has many years of experience. This attorney will commit the time, energy, and resources required to help you build a strong case. 

Be open to a plea agreement and any other legal suggestions or recommendations that your attorney provides. Your lawyer will do everything in their power to put you in the best position to dispute your DUI charge. If you consider what your attorney has to say, you can get the help you need to achieve your desired case result. 

Get Started with Contesting Your Washington DUI Charge

Veitch Ault Defense has attorneys on staff with over 40 years of combined legal experience fighting DUI charges. To learn more or request a free DUI case consultation, please contact us today


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