About DUIs Causing Serious Bodily Injury

Per Florida Statutes §316.1933, serious bodily injury is defined as any injury that causes a physical condition that creates a risk of death, personal disfigurement, as well as the risk of a loss or impairment of any bodily member or organ function. Therefore, a serious bodily injury could be dismemberment, a spinal cord injury or even traumatic brain injury. If someone involved in the accident suffered this level of catastrophic injury, it will create a different level of complications for your case.

For example, any DUI that resulted in a serious bodily injury will allow for law enforcement officers to use reasonable force to require a person to submit to a blood test to determine their blood alcohol level at the time of the accident.

This, however, can enter into a significantly gray area of the law. The law only provides guidelines for what is considered to be a serious bodily injury - not a solid outline of the types of injuries that qualify. Therefore, it is often left up to the judgment of the arresting officer. Unfortunately, these judgment calls are not always accurate.

The court dealt with such a matter in State v. Schreiber , where the arresting officer took a forced draw after he failed to read the defendant her rights under the Implied Consent law. It was later determined in the District Court of Appeal of Florida, Fourth District that the two fractured ankles did not qualify as "serious bodily injury." The resulting blood draws were therefore suppressed.

Why You Should Contact a Tampa DUI Lawyer

When your future is on the line, you simply cannot afford to work with an inexperienced attorney. You need someone on your side who will know the steps to take and will fight to protect them. With over two decades of aggregate experience, the legal team at Thomas & Paulk, P.A. knows what you are up against and will fight to preserve your future.

If you would like to learn more about our firm and the different steps that we can take to help protect your legal rights, do not hesitate to give us a call as soon as possible.

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Have You Been Charged with a DUI?

DUI Defense in Florida

At Thomas & Paulk, one of our primary focuses is on the defense of DUI charges. In fact, we are recognized throughout the Tampa area as one of the premier DUI defense law firms. Our team is well-versed in this area of the law and has a wide-expanse of experience in helping our clients fight against such charges.

It doesn’t matter if this is your first offense or your third, you can count on our firm to protect your legal rights. Often, our defense starts with recounting with you how the police officer came to stop you in the first place and how he or she came to believe you may be under the influence of alcohol. If the stop was illegal, or the tests were improperly administered, we may be able to argue for the dismissal of that evidence in court, helping your chances of a dropped charge.

If you would like to learn more about how our team can help, contact us today.

  • If you're arrested for DUI, you only have 10 days to schedule a DMV hearing where you can fight to save your license.

  • A blood alcohol reading of 0.15% or more can warrant an aggravated DUI charge with harsher penalties.

  • Each year, Hillsborough County issues around 4,000 DUI citations. Out of these, more than 3,000 are found guilty.

  • Per Florida's zero-tolerance policy, anyone under the age of 21 who tests positive for any measurable blood alcohol can be charged with DUI.

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