Arrested for DWI in Raleigh? Protect Your Rights and Let A DWI Defense Attorney Fight Your Charges

Raleigh DWI Lawyer Wiley Nickel

People get behind the wheel after drinking for many reasons. In some cases, the driver didn’t even realize he or she was impaired, or thought enough time had passed and he or she was safe to drive. Sometimes, a person just makes a bad choice. Regardless of what led to the arrest, facing driving while impaired (DWI) charges in North Carolina is a serious matter, even if it’s your first run in with the law. If you have been charged with drunk driving, however, there may be legal options available to help you minimize the negative consequences and move forward with your life.  We can talk right away for many clients about getting a limited driving privilege.

The lawyers at the Law Offices of Wiley Nickel, PLLC are here to help you. Wiley Nickel, Kristi Haddock and Melissa Botiglione represent individuals charged with a DWI and have helped achieve outcomes that meet their personal and legal goals. Their years of experience makes them uniquely prepared to offer effective guidance and form a plan that will help mitigate your situation. If you are facing a drunk driving charge, call our Wake County office today at (919) 585-1486 to learn more about how we can help you protect your rights and your future.

If You Have Been Arrested for DWI in the Raleigh Area, We Can Help You. 

There are many factors to consider when facing a DWI charge in North Carolina. The legal team at The Law Offices of Wiley Nickel, PLLC understands just how important each of the personal, social, financial, employment and criminal repercussions can be for each of our clients. Whether it’s a misdemeanor or felony case, we will put our experience and knowledge to work for you, seeking the best possible outcome to help you move forward from this frustrating and scary charge. If you or someone you love has been charged with DWI, call our Cary office today at (919) 585-1486 to speak with a Raleigh DWI Defense Attorney about your unique case. If you prefer, take a moment to fill out our online contact form on the right for a prompt response from a member of our legal team.

Whether it's your 1st offense or a repeat offense, let us help you protect your rights and minimize any negative consequences. When you reach out to us, you can expect to get answers to all of your questions and honest legal advice about your specific situation during a free consultation.  Our office is located in Cary, NC and we handle DUI and DWI charges in Wake County, North Carolina.

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Wiley Nickel

Wiley Nickel lives and works in Cary, North Carolina. In 1998, he graduated from Tulane University with a major in Political Science and a minor in History. After college Wiley went to work for Al Gore and travelled with the Vice President as part of his national advance staff. Following the Gore campaign he earned his law degree from the Pepperdine University School of Law in 2005. While in law school Wiley worked as a law clerk in the Ventura County District Attorney’s Office where he gained valuable criminal trial experience before taking and passing the California bar exam. His first job out of law school was for the Merced County District Attorney’s Office where he worked as a Deputy District Attorney with a focus on prosecuting DWI offenders. Wiley later joined the Law Offices of Joseph Uremovic where he focused on civil litigation and family law. When the opportunity came to join the Obama campaign in 2008 Wiley jumped at the chance. He spent three years travelling with President Obama as a member of his national advance team. In 2011 Wiley left his work for the White House to return to the practice of law. Wiley devotes the majority of his practice to the areas of criminal law, family law, traffic tickets and DMV issues. The Law Offices of Wiley Nickel was started with the goal of providing the best representation possible for all of his clients. Experienced, Compassionate, Aggressive Criminal Defense While defense attorney Wiley Nickel works as the primary attorney for all of his cases, he does have an associate attorney, a team of investigators, forensic consultants, and support staff to call on to help achieve the best possible result in every case. He limits his case load so that he can focus on providing the best possible legal defense to all of his clients. Every case is a top priority and the goal is to have your case dismissed with a focus on being able to expunge your charges at the end of the process. When he is not working, Wiley is an avid family man, distance runner and golfer. He loves North Carolina college sports and is hoping this is the year for Cam Newton and the Carolina Panthers. Wiley is licensed to practice law in North Carolina and California.

Choosing the wrong craft beer could lead to a North Carolina DWI

Choosing the wrong craft beer could lead to a North Carolina DWI

Not every beer is created equal. As many have noticed, Craft Breweries are popping up all over the triangle, it’s a booming industry growing every day taking over 12% of the market share of the overall beer industry. Most of these unique breweries are selling craft beers which have a higher percentage of alcohol than the beers you buy in the store.  

More sophisticated beer drinkers today than yesteryear...means a higher % ABV

Historically US beer drinkers have preferred a lighter lager type beer like Budweiser or Bud Light which still remains one of the top sellers in the US. The American beer palate has been shifting to a more sophisticated beer with unique and high quality flavors. Along with this unique taste comes a higher ABV (alcohol by volume). As the passion for craft beers keeps growing so is the percentage of alcohol per beer. Most craft beers range from 5-10% ABV (alcohol by volume), but some craft beers can reach 20%, 30%, and even 40% ABV! Click here. Compare this to the 2.5% ABV in Budweiser Select 55 and Miller Genuine Draft Light.

A craft beer can equal 3-4 cans of a regular ol’ beer like Coors

So when you walk out of your favorite new brewery and think you've only had 2 beers, it might be quite deceiving. Driving home after 1 beer can seem reasonable but not when that 1 beer has an ABV of 10% or 20%.

Arm yourself with some info, BEFORE you order that black IPA

Information is knowledge, so when you order your next craft beer ask about the ABV content. In most craft brewpubs, the ABV is also listed on the boards where they have all the beer options.

Contact a Raleigh DWI Lawyer. If you have been charged with a DWI in Wake County, North Carolina Attorney Kristi Haddock and Attorney Wiley Nickel are here to help. They offer free consultations. You can reach the Law offices of Wiley Nickel at 919-585- 1486.

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Wiley Nickel

Wiley Nickel lives and works in Cary, North Carolina. In 1998, he graduated from Tulane University with a major in Political Science and a minor in History. After college Wiley went to work for Al Gore and travelled with the Vice President as part of his national advance staff. Following the Gore campaign he earned his law degree from the Pepperdine University School of Law in 2005. While in law school Wiley worked as a law clerk in the Ventura County District Attorney’s Office where he gained valuable criminal trial experience before taking and passing the California bar exam. His first job out of law school was for the Merced County District Attorney’s Office where he worked as a Deputy District Attorney with a focus on prosecuting DWI offenders. Wiley later joined the Law Offices of Joseph Uremovic where he focused on civil litigation and family law. When the opportunity came to join the Obama campaign in 2008 Wiley jumped at the chance. He spent three years travelling with President Obama as a member of his national advance team. In 2011 Wiley left his work for the White House to return to the practice of law. Wiley devotes the majority of his practice to the areas of criminal law, family law, traffic tickets and DMV issues. The Law Offices of Wiley Nickel was started with the goal of providing the best representation possible for all of his clients. Experienced, Compassionate, Aggressive Criminal Defense While defense attorney Wiley Nickel works as the primary attorney for all of his cases, he does have an associate attorney, a team of investigators, forensic consultants, and support staff to call on to help achieve the best possible result in every case. He limits his case load so that he can focus on providing the best possible legal defense to all of his clients. Every case is a top priority and the goal is to have your case dismissed with a focus on being able to expunge your charges at the end of the process. When he is not working, Wiley is an avid family man, distance runner and golfer. He loves North Carolina college sports and is hoping this is the year for Cam Newton and the Carolina Panthers. Wiley is licensed to practice law in North Carolina and California.

North Carolina Driver’s License Restrictions for those Convicted of DWI

When the North Carolina Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV) restores a person’s North Carolina driver’s license after it has been revoked for DWI the license is restored subject to certain specific conditions for BAC and ignition interlock. (See Do I have to get interlock if I have a DWI? for more info)

First Time DWI in North Carolina

If your license was revoked for impaired driving and this is the first time your license has been restored your license is restored subject to the condition that you not operate a vehicle with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.04 at any time after driving. 

If your license was revoked for DWI under 21, your license is restored subject to the condition that you not operate a vehicle with a blood alcohol concentration of 0.00 at any time after driving. 

As part of getting your license back you must agree to submit to a chemical analysis (breath, blood or urine test) at the request of a law enforcement officer who has reasonable grounds to believe that you are operating a motor vehicle in violation of your license restrictions. You must also agree to be transported by the law enforcement officer upon his/her request to the place where a chemical analysis can be administered.  Unfortunately the law says that driving is a privilege, not a right so they can do this sort of stuff post-DWI conviction.

If you drive in violation of license restriction that is the equivalent of operating a motor vehicle without a license.  So if you blow above the 0.04 (or 0.00 depending on your respective driving conditions) you commit the offense of failure to comply with a license restriction which is a Class 3 criminal misdemeanor in North Carolina.  The police must complete an affidavit indicating the restriction was violated and then mail the affidavit to DMV. Upon receipt of a properly executed affidavit the NC DMV must notify you that your driver’s license is revoked for one year.

Ignition Interlock Violation Penalties

In addition to imposing alcohol concentration BAC restrictions the NC DMV must require ignition interlock for drivers whose licenses are restored following a conviction for impaired driving if:

  • You had an alcohol concentration of 0.15 or more.
  • You were convicted of a second offense of DWI, which happened within seven years of the offense for which your license was revoked; or
  • You were sentenced to an Aggravated Level One DWI.

An ignition interlock restriction requires the following:

  • You may operate only a vehicle that is equipped with ignition interlock.
  • You must personally activate the ignition interlock system before driving the motor vehicle.  So obviously someone else can’t blow into the ignition interlock for you.
  • You have an alcohol concentration restriction of 0.04 or 0.00 depending on the facts of your case.

If you violate an ignition interlock restriction you commit the offense of driving while license revoked for impaired driving (DWLR).  This is a Class 1 Misdemeanor in North Carolina.  If a magistrate finds probable cause for driving while license revoked based on an ignition interlock violation, the magistrate must notify you that your license is suspended pending the resolution of the case and must require you to surrender you license.  The magistrate must also inform you that you are not entitled to drive until the case is resolved.

Contact a Wake County DWI Lawyer

If you violated a BAC condition or an ignition interlock condition as part of your post-DWI driving privilege please contact The Law Offices of Wiley Nickel for a free consultation.  Raleigh DWI Lawyer Wiley Nickel handles DWI cases and DMV issues in the Wake County, North Carolina area.  Our office is located in Cary, NC and our office number is 919-585-1486.

 

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Wiley Nickel

Wiley Nickel lives and works in Cary, North Carolina. In 1998, he graduated from Tulane University with a major in Political Science and a minor in History. After college Wiley went to work for Al Gore and travelled with the Vice President as part of his national advance staff. Following the Gore campaign he earned his law degree from the Pepperdine University School of Law in 2005. While in law school Wiley worked as a law clerk in the Ventura County District Attorney’s Office where he gained valuable criminal trial experience before taking and passing the California bar exam. His first job out of law school was for the Merced County District Attorney’s Office where he worked as a Deputy District Attorney with a focus on prosecuting DWI offenders. Wiley later joined the Law Offices of Joseph Uremovic where he focused on civil litigation and family law. When the opportunity came to join the Obama campaign in 2008 Wiley jumped at the chance. He spent three years travelling with President Obama as a member of his national advance team. In 2011 Wiley left his work for the White House to return to the practice of law. Wiley devotes the majority of his practice to the areas of criminal law, family law, traffic tickets and DMV issues. The Law Offices of Wiley Nickel was started with the goal of providing the best representation possible for all of his clients. Experienced, Compassionate, Aggressive Criminal Defense While defense attorney Wiley Nickel works as the primary attorney for all of his cases, he does have an associate attorney, a team of investigators, forensic consultants, and support staff to call on to help achieve the best possible result in every case. He limits his case load so that he can focus on providing the best possible legal defense to all of his clients. Every case is a top priority and the goal is to have your case dismissed with a focus on being able to expunge your charges at the end of the process. When he is not working, Wiley is an avid family man, distance runner and golfer. He loves North Carolina college sports and is hoping this is the year for Cam Newton and the Carolina Panthers. Wiley is licensed to practice law in North Carolina and California.

Do I Have to Comply at a DWI Checkpoint?

DWI-Checkpoint-Wake-County

DWI checkpoints in North Carolina may seem like they infringe on your Fourth Amendment rights to be free from unreasonable searches seizures. However, the United States Supreme Court held in the 1990 case of Michgan Dept. of State Police vs. Sitz that checkpoints are in fact constitutional. Essentially, the court found that the benefit of stopping drunk drivers was greater than the burden of temporarily stopping drivers who went through the checkpoint.

You may find yourself in a line of cars one night waiting for an officer to briefly speak to you. When the officer approaches your car, you should roll down the window to hand the officer your driver’s license and registration if it is requested. If the officer suspects that you have been drinking or that there is a motor vehicle violation, she may ask you to pull over for further investigation. You do not have to answer any questions she asks you, such as if you have been drinking or where you are coming from.  If the officer has reasonable suspicion that you have been drinking, she may ask you to perform roadside sobriety tests, such as the one-legged stand, the walk and turn, or the HGN test. You do not have to do these tests, but your refusal to do so can be used against you in court. But, without results from these tests, the State will have to overcome the burden that the officer had probable cause to arrest you.

Even without these tests, if the officer believes you are too impaired to drive, she may arrest you. She will then ask you to step into an onsite bus to submit to a breathalyzer test. If you refuse to take this test, you will lose your license for one year in North Carolina. However, you have the right to request that someone be present with you at the test to witness it. The officer will allow the person 30 minutes to arrive before giving the test. If the person does not arrive after 30 minutes, the officer will go on with the test.

If you have been arrested for driving while intoxicated due to a checkpoint stop, contact The Law Offices of Wiley Nickel to discuss how we can help with your case. The Law Offices of Wiley Nickel, PLLC is located in Cary, NC near Harrison Avenue and Weston Parkway. For a free consultation call attorney Wiley Nickel or attorney Kristi Haddock at 919-585-1486 or email at wiley@wileynickel.com or kristi@wileynickel.com

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Wiley Nickel

Wiley Nickel lives and works in Cary, North Carolina. In 1998, he graduated from Tulane University with a major in Political Science and a minor in History. After college Wiley went to work for Al Gore and travelled with the Vice President as part of his national advance staff. Following the Gore campaign he earned his law degree from the Pepperdine University School of Law in 2005. While in law school Wiley worked as a law clerk in the Ventura County District Attorney’s Office where he gained valuable criminal trial experience before taking and passing the California bar exam. His first job out of law school was for the Merced County District Attorney’s Office where he worked as a Deputy District Attorney with a focus on prosecuting DWI offenders. Wiley later joined the Law Offices of Joseph Uremovic where he focused on civil litigation and family law. When the opportunity came to join the Obama campaign in 2008 Wiley jumped at the chance. He spent three years travelling with President Obama as a member of his national advance team. In 2011 Wiley left his work for the White House to return to the practice of law. Wiley devotes the majority of his practice to the areas of criminal law, family law, traffic tickets and DMV issues. The Law Offices of Wiley Nickel was started with the goal of providing the best representation possible for all of his clients. Experienced, Compassionate, Aggressive Criminal Defense While defense attorney Wiley Nickel works as the primary attorney for all of his cases, he does have an associate attorney, a team of investigators, forensic consultants, and support staff to call on to help achieve the best possible result in every case. He limits his case load so that he can focus on providing the best possible legal defense to all of his clients. Every case is a top priority and the goal is to have your case dismissed with a focus on being able to expunge your charges at the end of the process. When he is not working, Wiley is an avid family man, distance runner and golfer. He loves North Carolina college sports and is hoping this is the year for Cam Newton and the Carolina Panthers. Wiley is licensed to practice law in North Carolina and California.

Can I Be Charged With a DWI If I Haven’t Been Drinking?

Wake-County-DWI

Alcohol does not necessarily need to be involved to be charged and convicted with a DWI in North Carolina. Based on NCGS 20-138.1, “a person commits the offense of impaired driving if he drives any vehicle upon any highway, any street, or any public vehicular area within this State . . . while under the influence of an impairing substance.”

According to Shea Denning of the UNC School of Government, an impairing substance can be alcohol or a controlled substances, including illegal and legal drugs. Essentially, any drug that impairs one’s ability to drive can be considered an impairing substance.

These substances may not necessarily register on a breathalyzer, but North Carolina officers can still arrest you if they suspect that you are under the influence of an impairing substance. Instead of requiring a breath sample, the officer may request a blood sample. If you refuse to give one, the officer may apply for a warrant to take blood. In some situations, blood may even be taken without a warrant if the officer can prove exigent circumstances existed.

If you have been charged with a DWI in Wake County, contact The Law Offices of Wiley Nickel in Cary, NC, for a free consultation. Our office is conveniently located off of the Harrison Ave. exit of I-40 on Weston Parkway. We serve all areas of Wake County, including Raleigh, Cary, Apex, and Wake Forest. Call us at (919) 585-1486 for more information about how we can help you with your DWI case. 

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Wiley Nickel

Wiley Nickel lives and works in Cary, North Carolina. In 1998, he graduated from Tulane University with a major in Political Science and a minor in History. After college Wiley went to work for Al Gore and travelled with the Vice President as part of his national advance staff. Following the Gore campaign he earned his law degree from the Pepperdine University School of Law in 2005. While in law school Wiley worked as a law clerk in the Ventura County District Attorney’s Office where he gained valuable criminal trial experience before taking and passing the California bar exam. His first job out of law school was for the Merced County District Attorney’s Office where he worked as a Deputy District Attorney with a focus on prosecuting DWI offenders. Wiley later joined the Law Offices of Joseph Uremovic where he focused on civil litigation and family law. When the opportunity came to join the Obama campaign in 2008 Wiley jumped at the chance. He spent three years travelling with President Obama as a member of his national advance team. In 2011 Wiley left his work for the White House to return to the practice of law. Wiley devotes the majority of his practice to the areas of criminal law, family law, traffic tickets and DMV issues. The Law Offices of Wiley Nickel was started with the goal of providing the best representation possible for all of his clients. Experienced, Compassionate, Aggressive Criminal Defense While defense attorney Wiley Nickel works as the primary attorney for all of his cases, he does have an associate attorney, a team of investigators, forensic consultants, and support staff to call on to help achieve the best possible result in every case. He limits his case load so that he can focus on providing the best possible legal defense to all of his clients. Every case is a top priority and the goal is to have your case dismissed with a focus on being able to expunge your charges at the end of the process. When he is not working, Wiley is an avid family man, distance runner and golfer. He loves North Carolina college sports and is hoping this is the year for Cam Newton and the Carolina Panthers. Wiley is licensed to practice law in North Carolina and California.

Do I Have to Get Interlock if I Have a DWI?

Wake-County-DWI-Interlock

If you have been convicted of a DWI in North Carolina, you may be required to get Interlock installed in your vehicle before you are allowed to drive again. Interlock is a device that requires the user to blow into a tube. The user will not be allowed to start the car unless the device registers no alcohol on the user’s breath. Furthermore, the user must be the one convicted of the DWI – it is against the law to have someone else blow!

If you have recently been arrested for a DWI in Wake County, you need to know your rights and how to best handle your case so you can still drive for work. In some cases, you will not need to have Interlock installed to have a limited driving privilege. Under current North Carolina law, Interlock is required if you are convicted with a blood alcohol content (BAC) of .15 or greater, or have been convicted of a second DWI offense. Contact The Law Offices of Wiley Nickel at (919) 585-1486 to talk to an attorney about how we can help you with your DWI case in Wake County.

The State of North Carolina has the burden to prove that you were driving while intoxicated beyond the legal limit. Having an experienced attorney on your side may help you receive the best outcome for your case. Email us at wiley@wileynickel.com for a free consultation about your DWI case. 

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Wiley Nickel

Wiley Nickel lives and works in Cary, North Carolina. In 1998, he graduated from Tulane University with a major in Political Science and a minor in History. After college Wiley went to work for Al Gore and travelled with the Vice President as part of his national advance staff. Following the Gore campaign he earned his law degree from the Pepperdine University School of Law in 2005. While in law school Wiley worked as a law clerk in the Ventura County District Attorney’s Office where he gained valuable criminal trial experience before taking and passing the California bar exam. His first job out of law school was for the Merced County District Attorney’s Office where he worked as a Deputy District Attorney with a focus on prosecuting DWI offenders. Wiley later joined the Law Offices of Joseph Uremovic where he focused on civil litigation and family law. When the opportunity came to join the Obama campaign in 2008 Wiley jumped at the chance. He spent three years travelling with President Obama as a member of his national advance team. In 2011 Wiley left his work for the White House to return to the practice of law. Wiley devotes the majority of his practice to the areas of criminal law, family law, traffic tickets and DMV issues. The Law Offices of Wiley Nickel was started with the goal of providing the best representation possible for all of his clients. Experienced, Compassionate, Aggressive Criminal Defense While defense attorney Wiley Nickel works as the primary attorney for all of his cases, he does have an associate attorney, a team of investigators, forensic consultants, and support staff to call on to help achieve the best possible result in every case. He limits his case load so that he can focus on providing the best possible legal defense to all of his clients. Every case is a top priority and the goal is to have your case dismissed with a focus on being able to expunge your charges at the end of the process. When he is not working, Wiley is an avid family man, distance runner and golfer. He loves North Carolina college sports and is hoping this is the year for Cam Newton and the Carolina Panthers. Wiley is licensed to practice law in North Carolina and California.

Labor Day and DWIs: What You Need to Know

The unofficial end of summer is already this coming Monday, and with that comes beer, BBQs, and the beach. As you know, law enforcement officers in North Carolina tend to increase their patrol over NC roads, which can lead to a greater chance of being pulled over for speeding and for DWIs.

What’s the best way to beat a DWI? Obviously, don’t drive after you have been drinking. North Carolina is notoriously tough with drunk driving charges. Before you put the keys in the ignition, consider calling an Uber or taxi.

If you do find yourself with a DWI charge after Labor Day weekend, you should contact an attorney as soon as possible. In Wake County, all DWIs are for trial or for plea. DWIs are rarely, if almost never, dismissed at the will of the District Attorney. The Law Offices of Wiley Nickel have handled many DWIs in Wake County and can help navigate you through the process to mitigate damages to your reputation and bank account.

A DWI isn’t something you should ever handle on your own. Contact Wiley Nickel or Kristi Haddock at (919) 585-1486 to discuss how we can help you with your traffic charges. 

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Wiley Nickel

Wiley Nickel lives and works in Cary, North Carolina. In 1998, he graduated from Tulane University with a major in Political Science and a minor in History. After college Wiley went to work for Al Gore and travelled with the Vice President as part of his national advance staff. Following the Gore campaign he earned his law degree from the Pepperdine University School of Law in 2005. While in law school Wiley worked as a law clerk in the Ventura County District Attorney’s Office where he gained valuable criminal trial experience before taking and passing the California bar exam. His first job out of law school was for the Merced County District Attorney’s Office where he worked as a Deputy District Attorney with a focus on prosecuting DWI offenders. Wiley later joined the Law Offices of Joseph Uremovic where he focused on civil litigation and family law. When the opportunity came to join the Obama campaign in 2008 Wiley jumped at the chance. He spent three years travelling with President Obama as a member of his national advance team. In 2011 Wiley left his work for the White House to return to the practice of law. Wiley devotes the majority of his practice to the areas of criminal law, family law, traffic tickets and DMV issues. The Law Offices of Wiley Nickel was started with the goal of providing the best representation possible for all of his clients. Experienced, Compassionate, Aggressive Criminal Defense While defense attorney Wiley Nickel works as the primary attorney for all of his cases, he does have an associate attorney, a team of investigators, forensic consultants, and support staff to call on to help achieve the best possible result in every case. He limits his case load so that he can focus on providing the best possible legal defense to all of his clients. Every case is a top priority and the goal is to have your case dismissed with a focus on being able to expunge your charges at the end of the process. When he is not working, Wiley is an avid family man, distance runner and golfer. He loves North Carolina college sports and is hoping this is the year for Cam Newton and the Carolina Panthers. Wiley is licensed to practice law in North Carolina and California.

Get your license back after multiple DWI Convictions in North Carolina

If you are convicted of a second North Carolina DWI within 3 years, you face a 4 year suspension of your driver’s license, as mandated by the Department of Motor Vehicles. However, after 2 years you qualify for a discretionary restoration hearing. The hearing process is quiet lengthy, and when your license is suspended every day counts!

First, ahead of your eligibility date (2 years since your conviction), you may request a “pre-hearing interview.” At this pre-hearing meeting you and your attorney will meet with DMV officer to review what is expected before the restoration hearing is scheduled.

After your pre-hearing interview, you will have a short 90 days to get an FBI background check, a substance abuse evaluation conducted by a certified evaluator who is on the recommended DMV list, get applicable criminal background checks and DMV records, and solidify at least 3 witnesses willing to testify at your restoration hearing.

Once the DMV officer receives all of the required paperwork, a hearing date will be set. At the hearing you must have at least 3 witnesses who will testify on your behalf.  These witnesses are very important to the process and need to be fully prepared for the questioning.

Attorney’s Kristi Haddock and Wiley Nickel are ready to guide you through this process. When your ability to drive is at stake, you cannot afford to cut corners. Call our office for a free consultation today at 919-585-1486.  Our office is located in Cary, North Carolina.

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Wiley Nickel

Wiley Nickel lives and works in Cary, North Carolina. In 1998, he graduated from Tulane University with a major in Political Science and a minor in History. After college Wiley went to work for Al Gore and travelled with the Vice President as part of his national advance staff. Following the Gore campaign he earned his law degree from the Pepperdine University School of Law in 2005. While in law school Wiley worked as a law clerk in the Ventura County District Attorney’s Office where he gained valuable criminal trial experience before taking and passing the California bar exam. His first job out of law school was for the Merced County District Attorney’s Office where he worked as a Deputy District Attorney with a focus on prosecuting DWI offenders. Wiley later joined the Law Offices of Joseph Uremovic where he focused on civil litigation and family law. When the opportunity came to join the Obama campaign in 2008 Wiley jumped at the chance. He spent three years travelling with President Obama as a member of his national advance team. In 2011 Wiley left his work for the White House to return to the practice of law. Wiley devotes the majority of his practice to the areas of criminal law, family law, traffic tickets and DMV issues. The Law Offices of Wiley Nickel was started with the goal of providing the best representation possible for all of his clients. Experienced, Compassionate, Aggressive Criminal Defense While defense attorney Wiley Nickel works as the primary attorney for all of his cases, he does have an associate attorney, a team of investigators, forensic consultants, and support staff to call on to help achieve the best possible result in every case. He limits his case load so that he can focus on providing the best possible legal defense to all of his clients. Every case is a top priority and the goal is to have your case dismissed with a focus on being able to expunge your charges at the end of the process. When he is not working, Wiley is an avid family man, distance runner and golfer. He loves North Carolina college sports and is hoping this is the year for Cam Newton and the Carolina Panthers. Wiley is licensed to practice law in North Carolina and California.

North Carolina DWI Myths & Bad Advice

You’ve likely heard the different myths and urban legends about avoiding a driving while under the influence offense: putting a penny under your tongue will disrupt the Breathalyzer; gum will hide the odor of alcohol; if a cop doesn’t wear his hat the charge is invalid. Are any of these true?

 

 

    No, they are not. You cannot beat a DWI by eating peanut butter, by asking to see the officer’s badge, or by drinking mouthwash. In fact, many of these can actually hurt you. For example, if you are pulled over for drinking under the influence and it is obvious to the officer that you recently popped a mint or piece of gum, this could be a factor considered if the officer decides to arrest you for driving while intoxicated.

 

    There are methods that can help you beat a DWI though. If you are stopped for a DWI in North Carolina, you have the right to refuse roadside standard field sobriety tests, such as the walk-and-turn and the one-legged stand. You are even allowed to refuse the portable breathalyzer test (PBT) given by your car at the road-side. However, do know that if you refuse the actual breathalyzer test given at the police station or refuse to give blood, your license will automatically be suspended for one year.

 

    If you are pulled over and charged with a DWI in Wake County, North Carolina, contact The Law Offices of Wiley Nickel, PLLC, to talk to us about your case. We can be reached in Cary, NC at (919) 585-1486 or you can contact DWI Lawyer Wiley Nickel directly at wiley@wileynickel.com.

 

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Wiley Nickel

Wiley Nickel lives and works in Cary, North Carolina. In 1998, he graduated from Tulane University with a major in Political Science and a minor in History. After college Wiley went to work for Al Gore and travelled with the Vice President as part of his national advance staff. Following the Gore campaign he earned his law degree from the Pepperdine University School of Law in 2005. While in law school Wiley worked as a law clerk in the Ventura County District Attorney’s Office where he gained valuable criminal trial experience before taking and passing the California bar exam. His first job out of law school was for the Merced County District Attorney’s Office where he worked as a Deputy District Attorney with a focus on prosecuting DWI offenders. Wiley later joined the Law Offices of Joseph Uremovic where he focused on civil litigation and family law. When the opportunity came to join the Obama campaign in 2008 Wiley jumped at the chance. He spent three years travelling with President Obama as a member of his national advance team. In 2011 Wiley left his work for the White House to return to the practice of law. Wiley devotes the majority of his practice to the areas of criminal law, family law, traffic tickets and DMV issues. The Law Offices of Wiley Nickel was started with the goal of providing the best representation possible for all of his clients. Experienced, Compassionate, Aggressive Criminal Defense While defense attorney Wiley Nickel works as the primary attorney for all of his cases, he does have an associate attorney, a team of investigators, forensic consultants, and support staff to call on to help achieve the best possible result in every case. He limits his case load so that he can focus on providing the best possible legal defense to all of his clients. Every case is a top priority and the goal is to have your case dismissed with a focus on being able to expunge your charges at the end of the process. When he is not working, Wiley is an avid family man, distance runner and golfer. He loves North Carolina college sports and is hoping this is the year for Cam Newton and the Carolina Panthers. Wiley is licensed to practice law in North Carolina and California.

Prayer For Judgement (PJC)

  • What is a Prayer for Judgement?
    • A Prayer for Judgement, or PJC, is something that is unique to North Carolina that only a judge can grant. Basically, this allows you to plead guilty to a crime, without having the plea entered against you, and you will only have to pay the costs of court, no other fines or fees. Typically, these are reserved for traffic violations or petty misdemeanors.
  • What’s the catch?

    • A judge cannot grant a PJC on a speeding ticket over 15 mph, or a DWI.

    • You’re pleading guilty before your PJC is approved. Many times, defendants will go to court without an attorney and attempt to use their PJC. The prosecutor may tell you that they’re not against it, but the judge will have to approve of this, and by doing so, you’ve already pre-admitted to guilt and the judge might not be able to grant your PJC.

    • The DMV and insurance policies have their own policies regarding PJCs.

      • The DMV will only recognize two PJCs every five years.

      • Insurance policies will only recognize one PJC every three years.

  • Advice while considering a PJC...

    • Save your PJC! Each county has different policies, some will reduce speeding tickets or make you attend traffic school, it is best to not use a PJC here.

    • Be careful while trying to use a PJC, it is best to get an attorney so that you don’t admit to guilt for something you cannot use your PJC on, or something you could get reduced charges on. Save your record and your future by hiring an attorney.
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Wiley Nickel

Wiley Nickel lives and works in Cary, North Carolina. In 1998, he graduated from Tulane University with a major in Political Science and a minor in History. After college Wiley went to work for Al Gore and travelled with the Vice President as part of his national advance staff. Following the Gore campaign he earned his law degree from the Pepperdine University School of Law in 2005. While in law school Wiley worked as a law clerk in the Ventura County District Attorney’s Office where he gained valuable criminal trial experience before taking and passing the California bar exam. His first job out of law school was for the Merced County District Attorney’s Office where he worked as a Deputy District Attorney with a focus on prosecuting DWI offenders. Wiley later joined the Law Offices of Joseph Uremovic where he focused on civil litigation and family law. When the opportunity came to join the Obama campaign in 2008 Wiley jumped at the chance. He spent three years travelling with President Obama as a member of his national advance team. In 2011 Wiley left his work for the White House to return to the practice of law. Wiley devotes the majority of his practice to the areas of criminal law, family law, traffic tickets and DMV issues. The Law Offices of Wiley Nickel was started with the goal of providing the best representation possible for all of his clients. Experienced, Compassionate, Aggressive Criminal Defense While defense attorney Wiley Nickel works as the primary attorney for all of his cases, he does have an associate attorney, a team of investigators, forensic consultants, and support staff to call on to help achieve the best possible result in every case. He limits his case load so that he can focus on providing the best possible legal defense to all of his clients. Every case is a top priority and the goal is to have your case dismissed with a focus on being able to expunge your charges at the end of the process. When he is not working, Wiley is an avid family man, distance runner and golfer. He loves North Carolina college sports and is hoping this is the year for Cam Newton and the Carolina Panthers. Wiley is licensed to practice law in North Carolina and California.

WHAT SHOULD I DO IF I’M STOPPED FOR A DWI IN RALEIGH NC?

How to avoid a Wake County DWI during the 2014 December Christmas Holiday. Top Seven Things to Avoid a DWI and what to do if you are pulled over for suspicion of DWI.
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New Rules for Appointment of North Carolina Public Defenders for Class 3 Misdemeanors

As part of the 2013 Appropriations Act, the General Assembly enacted a new punishment scheme for Class 3 misdemeanors, limiting the punishment to a fine for many defendants.  The change applies to offenses committed on or after December 1, 2013.  Specifically marijuana possession under half an ounce is now a fine only offense for many in North Carolina.

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In addition to changing the punishment for Class 3 misdemeanors, the 2013 Appropriations Act reclassified some Class 1 and 2 misdemeanors as Class 3 misdemeanors and some Class 3 misdemeanors as infractions.  The punishment for offenses reclassified as Class 3 misdemeanors is likewise limited to a fine for many defendants.

The change in punishment for these Class 3 misdemeanors significantly affects the right to appointed counsel because the right to counsel for misdemeanors depends on the allowable punishment.  So if the punishment is only a fine as it now is for most marijuana possession charges and Driving While License Revoked (DWLR) charges those who cannot afford an attorney in North Carolina will no longer be able to have one provided by the courts.

What is the new rule for Class 3 misdemeanor punishments?

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Effective for offenses committed on or after December 1, 2013, the statute provides: “Unless otherwise provided for a specific offense, the judgment for a person convicted of a Class 3 misdemeanor who has no more than three prior convictions shall consist only of a fine.”

This change means that all defendants in prior conviction level I (no prior convictions) and some defendants in prior conviction level II (one to four prior criminal convictions) are subject to a fine only for a Class 3 misdemeanor unless another statute provides otherwise for the offense.

What effect does the new rule have on appointment of counsel?

As a result of the change, in many cases the defendant will not have the right to appointed counsel. For misdemeanors, a defendant has a Sixth Amendment right to counsel only if an active or suspended sentence of imprisonment is imposed. The formulation of this right has developed over a series of U.S. Supreme Court decisions.

North Carolina law provides indigent criminal defendants with a slightly broader right to counsel. G.S. 7A-451(a)(1) provides for appointed counsel in “[a]ny case in which imprisonment, or a fine of five hundred dollars . . . or more, is likely to be adjudged.” This provision will not come into play for most Class 3 misdemeanors if the defendant has three or fewer prior convictions: under the new punishment scheme for Class 3 misdemeanors, imprisonment is generally impermissible; and under other structured sentencing rules, the maximum fine is usually limited to $200.

Why did the Legislature make this change?

The goal was to reduce the costs of court appointed counsel and to save the taxpayers money for crimes that generally never received jail time to begin with. The General Assembly reduced the indigent defense budget by $2 million per year in light of the change in the punishment scheme for Class 3 misdemeanors and the reclassification of some misdemeanors (like DWLR) as Class 3 misdemeanors. Since there is no possibility of incarceration, these offenses do not require a court appointed lawyer.

Do these changes apply to juveniles?

No.

What punishments are permissible for a Class 3 misdemeanor?

If a defendant has three or fewer prior convictions, the court may impose a fine or, in the rare instance when a statute specifically authorizes it, a greater punishment. In fine-only cases, the usual structured sentencing rules apply, capping the fine at $200 unless another statute provides for a greater fine.  Among the most commonly-charged Class 3 misdemeanors, only one statute (littering) allows a greater punishment.

If a defendant has four or more prior convictions, the court may impose the usual punishments under structured sentencing, including an active or suspended sentence of imprisonment to the extent permissible. The remainder of the discussion in this part concerns Class 3 misdemeanor cases when the defendant has three or fewer prior convictions.

Is a sentence of active or suspended sentence of imprisonment permissible?

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No. If the defendant has three or fewer prior convictions (and no statute permits otherwise), the court may not impose jail time or a suspended sentence of imprisonment for a Class 3 misdemeanor.

Are court costs permissible?

The imposition of court costs on conviction remains permissible because it is not a criminal punishment. Court costs are not subject to the punishment limitation for Class 3 misdemeanors.

Is a North Carolina sentence of “credit for time served” permissible?

A sentence of credit for time served is likely permissible for a Class 3 misdemeanor because such a sentence imposes no additional punishment than the time already served before conviction; for an in-custody defendant, the sentence actually terminates confinement. Further, to accommodate this practice, North Carolina’s structured sentencing statutes contain an exception for time served for misdemeanors when an active punishment is not otherwise authorized, allowing imposition of a term of imprisonment “equal to or less than the total amount of time the offender has already spent committed to or in confinement . . . as a result of the charge that culminated in the sentence.”

Is a deferred prosecution arrangement permissible?

Yes. Although a defendant who receives a deferred prosecution may be placed on probation, with conditions, the arrangement is not part of a judgment and sentence, which would be deferred per the agreement with the Wake County District Attorney. If the defendant violates the terms of the arrangement, the State may resume the prosecution. If the defendant is later convicted, the court then would have to sentence the defendant with the fine-only restrictions in new G.S. 15A-1340.23(d).

Is the conditional discharge procedure in G.S. 90-96 permissible?

Yes, for reasons similar to the reasons discussed in the preceding question about deferred prosecutions. A defendant who receives a conditional discharge under G.S. 90-96—for example, for a Class 3 misdemeanor possession of marijuana offense—is placed on probation without entry of judgment or sentence. If the defendant violates the terms of the arrangement, the court then would have to impose a sentence consistent with the fine-only provisions in new G.S. 15A-1340.23(d).

How should prior convictions be counted?

Prior convictions should probably be counted according to the usual structured sentencing rules—that is, multiple convictions count as one conviction if from the same session of district court (usually, one day) or the same week of superior court. See G.S. 15A-1340.21(d). The reason is that the new punishment limitation for Class 3 misdemeanors is located in G.S. 15A-1340.23, the statute containing the table of prior conviction levels for misdemeanor sentencing, to which the prior-conviction counting rule in G.S. 15A‐1340.21(d) clearly applies.

Is a waiver of counsel required in Class 3 misdemeanor cases in which a person is subject to a fine only?

No. A waiver of counsel is not required because the person is not entitled to have counsel appointed.

Is a waiver of retained counsel required in such cases?

No. If a defendant does not have a right to appointed counsel, the court need not obtain a waiver of retained counsel.

To obtain a conviction of the Class 1 misdemeanor version of DWLR, must the State allege and prove that the DWLR was based on an impaired driving revocation?

Yes. The General Assembly has created two DWLR offenses: one based on an impaired driving revocation, a Class 1 misdemeanor; and the other based on any other revocation, a Class 3 misdemeanor. Although the two appear in the same statute, G.S. 20-28(a), they are separate offenses. If the State wants to prosecute the Class 1 misdemeanor offense, it must allege in the charging document and prove at trial beyond a reasonable doubt all the elements of the offense, including the impaired driving revocation. If the State of North Carolina fails to allege the impaired driving revocation in the charging document, the court’s jurisdiction is limited to the general Class 3 misdemeanor version of DWLR, which is subject to the fine-only provisions in new G.S. 15A-1340.23(d).

May the court appoint counsel if the defendant is arrested on a Class 3 misdemeanor and cannot make bond?

Yes. Whether detained before trial or after conviction, an inmate has a due process right to meaningful access to the courts.

Is a person statutorily entitled to counsel if he or she is charged with a North Carolina infraction that carries a penalty of $500 or more?

No. The statutory right to counsel applies to criminal cases carrying a fine of $500 or more. An infraction is a noncriminal violation of law. G.S.

Is a person entitled to counsel because of the collateral consequences of a Class 3 misdemeanor?

Under the current state of the law in North Carolina, no. Some state courts have suggested that their state constitutions may require appointment of counsel because of the collateral consequences that attach to a criminal conviction, which can have a serious and longstanding impact

If the court imposes a fine only, may the court impose a sentence of imprisonment for failure to pay that fine?

The law is unsettled on this count.

May a fine be docketed and collected as a civil judgment?

Yes. The Legislature continues to authorize that procedure if the court finds the defendant has defaulted in payment.

Is a person’s license to drive subject to revocation for failing to pay a fine for a motor vehicle offense?

Yes. G.S. 20-24.1 continues to require revocation of a person’s license to drive for failing to pay a fine for a motor vehicle offense.

If the defendant was not afforded counsel when convicted of a fine-only misdemeanor, may the conviction be used to enhance the defendant’s sentence for a later offense?

Yes. An uncounseled misdemeanor conviction, valid because no term of imprisonment was imposed, may later be used to enhance a sentence for a subsequent offense. 

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Wiley Nickel

Wiley Nickel lives and works in Cary, North Carolina. In 1998, he graduated from Tulane University with a major in Political Science and a minor in History. After college Wiley went to work for Al Gore and travelled with the Vice President as part of his national advance staff. Following the Gore campaign he earned his law degree from the Pepperdine University School of Law in 2005. While in law school Wiley worked as a law clerk in the Ventura County District Attorney’s Office where he gained valuable criminal trial experience before taking and passing the California bar exam. His first job out of law school was for the Merced County District Attorney’s Office where he worked as a Deputy District Attorney with a focus on prosecuting DWI offenders. Wiley later joined the Law Offices of Joseph Uremovic where he focused on civil litigation and family law. When the opportunity came to join the Obama campaign in 2008 Wiley jumped at the chance. He spent three years travelling with President Obama as a member of his national advance team. In 2011 Wiley left his work for the White House to return to the practice of law. Wiley devotes the majority of his practice to the areas of criminal law, family law, traffic tickets and DMV issues. The Law Offices of Wiley Nickel was started with the goal of providing the best representation possible for all of his clients. Experienced, Compassionate, Aggressive Criminal Defense While defense attorney Wiley Nickel works as the primary attorney for all of his cases, he does have an associate attorney, a team of investigators, forensic consultants, and support staff to call on to help achieve the best possible result in every case. He limits his case load so that he can focus on providing the best possible legal defense to all of his clients. Every case is a top priority and the goal is to have your case dismissed with a focus on being able to expunge your charges at the end of the process. When he is not working, Wiley is an avid family man, distance runner and golfer. He loves North Carolina college sports and is hoping this is the year for Cam Newton and the Carolina Panthers. Wiley is licensed to practice law in North Carolina and California.