Impaired Driving in Toronto
Impaired driving, Over 80, Refuse Breath Test and Care and Control are Criminal Code charges most often laid against drivers suspected, or known to be, under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs in Canada.
Many drivers believe that if charged with one or more of the above offences a conviction is inevitable. Nothing could be further from the truth! Many believe that if the breathalyzer machine reading indicates guilt there is no defence and if there is no defence, why bother with the expense of legal representation and a trial.
Toronto Traffic Tickets utilizes the vast experience of former police officers, breathalyzer technicians and criminal investigators to examine the circumstances leading to the arrest, the actions of police before release from custody, and the documents served.
The combined expertise of our Toronto Traffic Tickets team and the services of a lawyer specializing in alcohol/drug impaired driving, provide us with a success rate of more than 80%.
It is 1:30 in the morning. You are driving home after spending an enjoyable evening at a bar and are stopped by the police. The officer suspects you have been drinking and administers a roadside breathalyzer (ASD). The breathalyzer indicates your blood alcohol concentration (BAC) is in excess of 80mgs of alcohol per 100ml of blood.
You are arrested, cautioned, searched, handcuffed, placed in the rear of the cruiser and driven to the nearest police station with an on-duty breathalyzer technician.
Upon arrival you are booked; your personal items taken; you are fingerprinted, photographed and placed in a holding cell where you may experience feelings humiliation, shame, guilt, anger and fear.
When the breathalyzer technician is ready, you are removed from the cell and taken to the technician's area. You are ordered to sit, cautioned, asked if you have anything to say and informed of the upcoming procedure. You are told to blow into the tube twice within twenty-minutes of each other and returned to the holding cell.
While you have been booked and processed at the police station, your vehicle has been towed and impounded.
Toronto Impaired Driving
When the booking officer determines you are sober enough to be released from custody (in most cases a minimum of four hours) - your personal possessions are returned and you are released from custody after being served with official documents:
Promise to Appear - indicates your first court appearance date
Notice to Registrar - a notice sent to the Ministry of Transportation regarding the immediate 90 day suspension of your driver's licence
Copy of the breathalyzer readings
Application for Increased Penalty - if you have a previous conviction under Sections 253 or 254(5) of the Criminal Code for which you have not received a pardon, a greater penalty will be sought by the Prosecution
RELEASED FROM POLICE CUSTODY - NOW WHAT?
Consider the consequences of pleading guilty:
Guilty - First offence:
A conviction will be registered against you with the following ramifications:
Driver's licence prohibition - a minimum of one-year
Fine - between $600 to $2,000
Ignition Interlock System - Equipment installation and removal fee of $1,500 + monthly equipment rental charge. Before starting the vehicle, the driver (any driver) must blow into the device. If the driver's blood alcohol concentration is above the pre-set limit, the vehicle will not start. Once the vehicle is started, the interlock device requires the driver to provide breath samples at random pre-set times while the engine is running. If a sample is not provided, or if the blood alcohol concentration exceeds the limit, the device will issue a warning, record the event and activate specific alarm systems, e.g., lights flashing, horn honking, etc., until the ignition is turned off.
Drivers convicted of driving without an ignition interlock device or for tampering with the device will face fines under the Highway Traffic Act:
Commercial vehicles $200 - $20,000
Other motor vehicles $200 - $ 1,000
Insurance Rates - will increase between 100% to 300% for a period of 3 to 5 years - assuming you can find a company to insure you
Back on Track - Ontario's Remedial Measures Program for Impaired Drivers. It is mandatory. Program fee is $475. You should register for "Back on Track" as soon as possible after you receive your suspension notice to avoid delays in licence reinstatement. It may take up to 11 months to complete all program requirements. The program requirements include: assessment, education/treatment and a six-month follow-up interview.