A few wines at dinner, or a few beers at a party
If you are arrested
If you are arrested for driving with an excessive alcohol level and you are going to be questioned or if you receive an order to pay damages, it is always best to consult a knowledgeable lawyer. If you have received a summons and you have to appear in court, you are even required to be assisted by a lawyer.
During interrogations, rules can be broken and it also happens often that during the alcohol test the rules were not followed. In the latter case, the alcohol test may not provide valid evidence and you may be acquitted. In these cases you can count on the lawyers at Law & More in Eindhoven and Amsterdam.
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Driving Under the Influence
Driving under the influence of alcohol is prohibited if a certain percentage of alcohol is measured in the blood or breath. Driving under the influence of alcohol is not a misdemeanour but a crime (art. 178 jo. 176 WVW). The penalties for committing a crime are higher than for offences. You could therefore be heavily punished if you are caught behind the wheel with more alcohol than permitted. The percentages with which it is forbidden to drive are lower for beginning drivers.
Experienced Drivers & Drivers of Non-Motorized Vehicles & Drivers of Motor Vehicles Without a Driver's License
It is prohibited to drive or allow a driver to drive a vehicle after consuming such alcohol that:
- a test reveals the presence of more than 220 micrograms of alcohol per liter of exhaled air in the breath, or;
- there is more than 0.5 milligrams of alcohol per milliliter of blood in the blood during an examination.
For a man that often means 2 glasses of alcohol within 1 hour and for a woman about 1 glass of alcohol. The liver takes on average 1 to 1.5 hours to break down a standard glass of alcohol. This is, of course, an estimate. Alcohol affects everyone differently, and it also depends on which alcoholic beverage is consumed.
For a driver of a motor vehicle for which a driving licence is required, and:
- Less than five years have elapsed since the date of issuance of the driver's license for the first time, or;
- The first issued driver's license concerns a driver's license given to a person who was not yet 18 at the time of issue, and seven years have not yet passed, and that first issue took place on or after March 30, 2002, different percentages apply.
It is in that case forbidden to drive that motor vehicle or allow it to be driven if such alcohol has been consumed:
- More than 88 micrograms of alcohol per liter of exhaled air is present in the breath, or;
- More than 0.2 milliliters per milliliter of blood is present in the blood.
Persons who fall into the latter category are therefore punishable even with less alcohol.
For novice drivers, men reach the alcohol limit at around one glass. Women reach the limit with less than 1 glass of alcohol, about 0.5 glass.
This stricter rule also applies to two other categories of drivers. Firstly, for drivers of motor vehicles to whom a driving licence has not been issued for the driving of that motor vehicle, although it is compulsory. And secondly, for drivers of motor vehicles who are obliged to participate in the alcolock programme.
Furthermore, in special cases, you may also be liable to punishment if you are under the criminal alcohol limit and you are driving a vehicle
Dangerous Driving & Accidents
In addition, dangerous driving and driving in such a way that, through your fault, an accident resulting in death or physical injury is also punishable. This is important in the context of driving under the influence of alcohol. This is discussed further in the explanation of punishments & measures.
Need a lawyer for traffic criminal law?
Then contact us by phone at +31 40 369 06 80 or send an email to:
Mr. Tom Meevis, attorney at Law & More - firstname.lastname@example.org
Mr. Maxim Hodak, attorney at Law & More - email@example.com