Are You Facing Charges For Boating Under The Influence?

Most people know the law prohibits driving under the influence (DUI) when operating a car, but some are surprised to learn that the same laws apply to operating a vessel while under the influence of alcohol or drugs. This is known in Florida as boating under the influence (BUI) and carries similar penalties to a DUI.

If you find yourself facing BUI charges, I can help. I am Marcos Beaton Jr. and I provide aggressive criminal defense to people throughout Florida from my firm, Beaton Law Firm, located in Miami. I have decades of experience and have spent thousands of hours in a courtroom. I consider myself a dedicated trial lawyer and I am not afraid to defend your legal rights.

What Are The Penalties For A BUI?

The Florida statute regarding a BUI mirrors that of a DUI in many ways. The legal limit for a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) is .08% and penalties can include the following:

  • First offense – Up to $1,000 in fines, up to six months in jail, probation, possible drug evaluation, your vessel impounded for up to 10 days and 50 hours of community service.
  • Second offense – Up to $2,000 in fines, up to nine months in jail, probation, your vessel or another vehicle impounded for up to 30 days.
  • Third offense – This is a third-degree felony if it occurs within 10 years of the last conviction and requires a mandatory minimum of 30 days in jail and your vessel or another vehicle impounded for up to 90 days. If outside of the 10 years, then a fine of $5,000 and up to 12 months in jail.

Just as with a DUI, certain conditions can increase your penalties, including prior convictions of BUI or DUI, having a minor in the boat, causing an accident that results in property damage or injuries, and having a heightened BAC of .15% or more.

You Can Fight Your Charges

You do have the right to defend yourself against the charges you face. To find out how I can help, please call me at 305-907-2543 or send an online message to schedule an initial consultation.