What Are The Penalties For DUI In Virginia?

There are hundreds of DUI-related motor vehicle fatalities every year in Virginia. For this reason, Virginia takes driving under the influence (DUI) charges seriously. You may even face possible jail time depending on your intoxication level at the time of the DUI and your age.

DUI In Virginia

A DUI in the state of Virginia is defined as driving with a blood alcohol content over the legal limit set by the state. If you’re under the age of 21 years old, you could face a DUI charge for a blood alcohol content of .02 percent or more.

For adults over the age of 21 years old, the blood alcohol content limit is set at .08 percent. Although .08 percent tends to be the blood alcohol content limit set by most states, Virginia is especially tough on DUI offenders.

You might also face a driving under the influence charge if you’re driving while intoxicated by a controlled substance. In other words, a driving under the influence charge applies to both drugs and alcohol in the state of Virginia.

Penalties for DUI

The state of Virginia punishes younger and/or repeat offenders much more harshly than older DUI offenders.

Young drivers caught operating a motor vehicle with a blood alcohol content of .02 percent or more could additionally face a restricted driver’s license or mandatory enrollment in Virginia’s Alcohol Safety Action Program (ASAP).

Older drivers in Virginia charged with a DUI face a maximum $300 fine and one-year license revocation for their first offense. Second offenses within a five year period warrant jail time and an indefinite license suspension. A third DUI offense within five years warrants six months in jail and a minimum fine of $1000.

Contact a Virginia DUI Attorney

Finding an attorney that can prove your innocence and fight to get your charges reduced is an essential first step to take.

A DUI attorney can keep your criminal record clean and even identify improper police procedures.

An experienced attorney can also evaluate your case to determine whether field sobriety tests are admissible in court or whether the officer had valid grounds for stopping you.

Contact a Virginia DUI attorney today to have your case evaluated and potentially have your charges lowered or dropped.

Recent Changes in Laws Affecting Social Security Beneficiaries

The Social Security Administration has announced the 2019 changes to the Social Security laws. Some changes specifically affect beneficiaries already receiving Social Security benefits. The following is not an exhaustive listing of all changes but will focus on three specific changes in 2019 that will affect those beneficiaries retired or approaching retirement.

A BIGGER CHECK
Social Security recipients will realize a 2.8 percent increase in their monthly benefits commencing in January, which is the most substantial increase seen since 2012. Beneficiaries will see an average increase of $39 per month and total monthly benefits of $1,461. Benefits for couples who both receive social security will rise an average of $67 per month to a monthly allowance of $2,448.00.

What triggered the increase? Social Security adjustments are tied to the Consumer Price Index for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers. Social Security benefits are corrected for cost of living adjustments (COLA) and are based on inflationary measurements. The last Social Security adjustment was a 2 percent increase in 2018.

A BIGGER EARNING LIMIT
Social Security recipients who have reached full retirement age will continue to be eligible to work while collecting benefits, without incurring a penalty. The monthly allowance will be computed to reflect a credit for current earnings, as well as adjustment for benefits withheld in the past.

In 2019, beneficiaries who work can earn an additional $600 before a portion of their benefit is withheld. As a result, a recipient aged 65 and younger are allowed to receive $17,640 per year, after which $1 will be withheld for every $2 earned over the amount of $17,640.

In the same year a recipient reaches full retirement age, the limitation on earnings is raised to $46,920 (which is an increase of $1,560 over the limit in 2018). Also, the withholding penalty will be adjusted to $1 for every $3 earned over the income cap of $46,920.

A CHANGE IN FULL RETIREMENT AGE
Two thousand nineteen will also see a change in the age by which an individual is entitled to qualify for full retirement age benefits. For persons born between 1943 and 1954, the full retirement qualifying age is 66 years. For those persons born in 1956, the entitlement age has been adjusted to 66 and four months. For those persons born in 1955, the entitlement age has been modified to 66 and two months. Finally, for every year after 1956, the retirement year will be increased by two months, until full retirement age reaches 67 years for anyone born in 1960 or after that.

A person is still eligible to claim social security benefits at age 62; however, there will be a greater reduced payment penalty for the early request. Finally, an individual’s opportunity to increase their benefit payments by taking a postponed commencement date has been diminished for persons with later full retirement ages.

There are more changes coming from Social Security in 2019. To find more information applying for benefits you can visit  Social Security Offices near me today.