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Difference Between OWI and DWI

bourbon_whiskyOWI vs. DWI

Most people get confused between the terms OWI and DUI. Both acronyms actually refer to the use of a motorized vehicle when you are prejudiced with either alcohol, or with some other illegal substance. Both terms have their own separate meanings. DUI simply stands for the condition when you are said to be ‘driving under the influence’, while OWI stands for the condition when one is said to be ‘operating while intoxicated’.

Now, dealing with both conditions differs from one state to another. Every jurisdiction has its own set of rules and regulations, and implements its own punishment guidelines to judge the guilty. Hence, the severity of punishment isn’t fixed. What matters is in what state you committed the offence, for you may be facing different consequences in the end.

Nevertheless, some places have a certain ruling to fine lesser charges when caught guilty with DUI. However, they fine bigger charges when the individual is found to be engaged in OWI. This type of differentiation happens because the law usually recognise DUI with lesser intoxication. This level of intoxication is determined by the level of alcohol a person has at the time when he or she was arrested. In some occasions, there are a few states that fine fewer charges for culprits involved in OWI, but this mechanism employs the use of a defence attorney. In addition, the individual who has fallen under the section of DUI is most likely to face fewer problems, and will have to pay less fines if he or she seeks the help of a legal representative.

In the event that an individual seeks the privilege to have a downgrade from OWI to DUI, there are some conditions that have to be met. For example, during first time incidents, it will first be assessed whether the repentance level of the individual (defendant) and the level of alcohol in the blood, exceeds or does not exceed the set legal limits. In the case of New York protocols, the state has fixed the blood alcohol level to 0.8% as the lawful edge of OWI.

If we summarize the information above, we will reach the conclusion that there are few significant differences between OWI and DUI, such as:

1. Both the charges differ due to the level of alcohol found using the BAC test at the moment of arrest.

2. The implication of OWI can be lowered, and changes into a DUI with the help of a legal representative. OWI is usually thought to be a graver condition compared to the DUI.

3. Each state has its own criteria to determine the fine and guilt in either DUI or OWI.

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1 Comment

  1. The last sentence of the third paragraph contains the grammatical error “and will have to pay less fines “. I refer you to the difference between less and fewer on differencebetween.net.


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