Although driving under the influence tends to garner a great deal more attention in the media, the crime of boating under the influence can be just as serious. It’s defined under NRS 488.410, and it’s important to understand that Nevada courts treat this crime just as severely as they do DUIs. If you’ve been charged under this law, then you need an aggressive Las Vegas boating under the influence attorney working for you.
NRS 400.410 defines boating under the influence as operating or being “in actual physical control of a vessel under power or sail on the waters of this State” while being drunk or under the influence of drugs. If the boater’s blood alcohol content, or BAC, is above the legal limit of 0.08, then they may be arrested for boating under the influence. Notice that the 0.08 limit is the same as the legal limit for driving under the influence. Submission to a chemical test is mandatory when boating under the influence, just as it is for suspicion of DUI.
Boating under the influence, or BUI, is commonly charged as a misdemeanor. If the court feels that an incident of BUI resulted in the injury or death of another person, then it may be charged as a felony. Similarly, a person who was previously convicted of a BUI may be subject to a felony charge even if there was no significant injury or death.
Misdemeanor BUI is typically charged under NRS 488.410. Potential consequences include a maximum of six months in jail and fines of up to $1,000. If the BUI is charged as a category B felony, then the consequences may be between two and 15 years in prison and $2,000 to $5,000 in fines. The most serious BUIs, which involve death or injury under NRS 488.420, may carry penalties of between two and 20 years in prison in addition to fines of $2,000 to $5,000.
If you have been charged under any of these laws, then you need a competent Las Vegas BUI attorney working to defend you in court. It’s vital that you take these charges as seriously as you would a DUI.