Notable changes involving DUI law in Atlanta | Atlanta DUI lawyer

The 2001 legislation also provided that a second conviction within five years results in a minimum jail sentence of 72 hours, rather than 48 hours; that community service is increased from 80 hours to 30 days; and that the license suspension increases to a hard 12 month suspension followed by six months of IID restriction. Additionally, the license plates of all cars registered to a person convicted of a second offense in five years must be surrendered during the hard suspension period. A third DUI conviction within five years mandates that the offender serve at least fifteen days rather than ten days; a portion of the sentence must now be probated to subject the offender to conditions of probation relating to ignition interlock devices. As with a second offense within five years, minimum community service is 30 days rather than 120 hours.
Also in 2001, an “aggressive driving” statute that carries a six point penalty was enacted, and the presumption language of O.C.G.A. § 40-6-392 was replaced with “inference” language. An open container law was enacted that prohibits anyone in the vehicle (as opposed to just the driver) from having an open container.This bill added a new O.C.G.A. § 40-6-15, which makes it a misdemeanor to knowingly operate a vehicle when the registration is suspended, cancelled or revoked, and further added that operating a vehicle in violation of § 40-6-15 is subject to the mandatory driver’s license suspension/habitual violator offense(s) set forth in § 40-5-54.
House Bill 1169, effective May 9, 2002, added a new O.C.G.A. § 36-32-10.2, relating to jurisdiction of municipal courts, and further amended § 17-7-71 to allow the prosecutor in any court to amend “any citation” prior to trial, thereby eviscerating the earlier cases that had stated that a Uniform Traffic Citation could not be amended (only a subsequent accusation could add/delete charges). Contact an Atlanta DUI lawyer for a free consultation.