Tracey Wood & Associates - Criminal Defense and Immigration Law

Defense Attorney Tracey Wood Drunk Driving Attorney Tracey Wood is a Super Lawyer in Wisconsin
(608) 350-1004

     Attorney Tracey A. Wood , owner of Tracey Wood & Associates is an aggressive criminal defense attorney in Madison, Wisconsin.    She focuses her practice on defending the rights of individuals whether they are charged with drunken driving or more severe criminal charges including murder, sex crimes in Wisconsin, federal conspiracy or seeking an expungement of a previous conviction.
   She is known throughout the legal community as the foremost authority on Wisconsin OWI DUI laws and has been hailed for her defenses and successful trial and case record.
   Ms. Wood has been pioneering new frontiers for women in law since she entered practice in 1992. She is the first attorney from Wisconsin ever appointed as a Standardized Field Sobriety Test Instructor, and first Wisconsin attorney to be appointed to the Board of Regents to the National College for DUI Defense held at Harvard Law School. She chairs the Wisconsin Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers Strike Force for the state's largest association for criminal defense lawyers and has previously served as the President of that organization. She has authored several articles on defense against drunk driving charges including Challenging Prior Under Influence Convictions, an article discussing U.S. v. Gant in the Wisconsin Law Journal, and she has contributed to the national DUI attorneys' bible by Taylor & Oberman, entitled "Drunk Driving Defense".
   She has also won many appeals in both the Wisconsin Appellate System (most recently City of Beloit v. Steven Herbst) and the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals in Chicago (i.e. U.S. v. Andres Perez).

Super Lawyer Tracey Wood defends people charged with OWI or DUI
Super Lawyer Tracey Wood defends people charged with OWI or DUI
Super Lawyer Tracey Wood defends people charged with OWI or DUI
NCDD National College for DUI Defense: Tracey Wood
(608) 350-1004

Changes In Wisconsin DUI Laws

Tracey Wood & Associates
Wisconsin Criminal Defense Lawyers

Changes In Wisconsin DUI Laws

DUI OWI DWI BAC PAC laws - the acronyms can be confusing, and the laws even more so, particularly when the rules change. Drunk driving charges (widely known as DUI's) in Wisconsin are called OWI's, an acronym for 'operating while under the influence'.

DUI is an acronym for 'driving under the influence', which is used in many states. DWI is an acronym for 'driving while under the influence' or 'driving while intoxicated'. BAC stands for blood alcohol content, which you can learn a great deal about at this website. Lastly, PAC stands for prohibited alcohol content levels, the maximum levels of alcohol concentration permitted by law to exist in a person's bloodstream while they're driving.

A Historic Overview of changes in Wisconsin's dui laws

-by Attorney Tracey A. Wood
Attorney Tracey Wood is Wisconsin's foremost authority on drunk driving laws, the President of the Wisconsin Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, past president of the Dane County Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, and Wisconsin's first ever Board of Regents member to the National College for DUI Defense. Attorney Wood regularly speaks at seminars across the nation, and mentors both new and experienced lawyers in the strategies of a good defense. Attorney Wood is also an expert advisor on challenging and appealing prior under the influence convictions.

Wisconsin Drunk Driving Laws - OWI OMVWI DUI DWI

Wisconsin's OWI (Operating While Intoxicated, also known as Drunk Driving) Laws have undergone continual change over the past 5 years to:
-Lower the BAC (Blood Alcohol Concentration) also known as PAC (Prohibited Alcohol Concentration) level to.08,
-Expand the use of ignition interlocks, now removing the discretionary powers of the judge to make them mandatory,
-Repeal the mandatory forfeiture of vehicles, although forfeiture is still an option,
-Prohibit Huber / work release privileges for any convicted driver who is not in compliance with court ordered assessment, and
-Establish treatment requirements, and
-Increases fines in certain drunk driving cases.

Wisconsin Drunk Driving Penalties - Arrests - Fines - Jail Time

Permissible blood alcohol content level lowered - BAC down

Under Wisconsin laws, the legal limit at which a person can be fined and removed from driving on the roadways is .08, unless the person has prior OWI convictions or a commercial driver's license. Wisconsin’s OWI law has lowered the PAC (Prohibited Alcohol Concentration Level) to 0.02 for anyone with a fourth or subsequent drunk driving offense. Counting includes both drunk driving offense and test refusal offenses, so the conviction number is determined by any combination of these offenses.

Higher fines for drunk driving convictions

Wisconsin's new drunk driving law vastly increases fines in third and subsequent drunk driving offenses whenever the blood alcohol concentration (BAC) level is high.

BAC 0.17 to 0.199: fines are doubled (2 times original fine)
BAC 0.20 to 0.249: fines are tripled (3 times original fine)
BAC above 0.249: fines are quadrupled (4 times original fine)

The changes in the law have also vastly increased fines in third and subsequent offense drunk driving cases where the alcohol concentration is high: the minimum and maximum fine ranges doubled if the BAC is 0.17 to 0.199, tripled from 0.20 to 0.249, and quadrupled above that. However, an escape clause which already existed in prior law was expanded to allow a judge to impose lower fines for those that can't pay the higher amounts and require the person to use the reduction in amount to pay for the assessment and "driver safety plan," i.e., treatment.

Increased Fines for Drunk Driving Convictions

Where previous OWI law in Wisconsin included special consideration for convicted people who were already financially challenged, the law expanded its financial considerations providing that a judge may impose lower fines for those who cannot pay the higher fine amounts and require the convicted person to pay for treatment (assessment, driver safety plan, etc.) with the funds that would have otherwise been used to pay the fine.

Changes in Counting Prior Drunk Driving Convictions

Wisconsin's OWI law slightly changed the method by which prior convictions are counted: a conviction for great bodily harm or homicide by use of a motor vehicle counts for a lifetime in calculating which offense the current conviction is counted as, i.e. First, Second, Third, etc. (This provision originated as A.B. 665).

Huber Work Release Prohibited With Consideration

Wisconsin’s drunk driving law prohibits Huber Law, commonly known as work release privileges, for those serving jail or prison time for a drunk driving conviction, if the convicted person is not in compliance with the court’s orders and the alcohol assessment or treatment plan, if such was ordered, unless the convicted person does not have sufficient funds to make any payments necessary to obtain the assessment or to comply with the driver safety plan.

Mandatory Forfeiture Of Motor Vehicle Removed

Previously, seizure and forfeiture of a vehicle were options a judge could order in the third offense and were mandatory that a judge order them in the fourth and subsequent convictions for drunk driving or test refusal. Under the law now, forfeiture is no longer mandatory for any conviction, but rather remains an option to interlocking and immobilization orders for fourth and subsequent convictions.

Wisconsin Law For Ignition Interlocks Changed

An Ignition Interlock is a testing device that is installed into a vehicle. The device requires the driver submit an alcohol-free breath sample before the vehicle can be started, then at intervals while the vehicle is in operation to keep it running. Devices are installed at the convicted person’s expense and only in non-commercial vehicles. Wisconsin’s OWI statute provides judges with the option to order anyone convicted of a second offense drunk driving or a second offense test refusal to install an ignition interlock device in his or her vehicle, so long as the convicted person owns the vehicle and was using that vehicle when the violation or improper refusal was committed. If the judge orders an ignition interlock, the order must be for at least one year and cannot exceed the maximum length of driver revocation allowed by law for the offense or refusal.

Immobilization - Booting

Immobilization refers to the many means by which a vehicle may be legally prevented from being driven, including “booting”.

As with ignition interlocking, immobilization orders are at the judge’s discretion. A judge may order either, or neither. If immobilization is ordered, the order must immobilize the vehicle for at least one year, but no longer than the maximum period of revocation allowed for the second drunk driving offense or second offense for test refusal. As with interlocking, the convicted person must own the vehicle that is ordered to be immobilized and that vehicle must have been the vehicle the person was driving when the offense or improper refusal was committed.

Title Transfer On Other Motor Vehicles Allowed

Wisconsin’s OWI law has also modified the required stop placed on all vehicle title transfers that previously existed for those convicted of a third or subsequent offense to a requirement to stop title transfers only on the vehicle both owned by the convicted person and used to commit the third or subsequent drunk driving or test refusal offense.

wisconsin department of transportation safe ride program

Wisconsin’s OWI law required the Wisconsin Department of Transportation to create rules governing the installation and use of ignition interlocks, as well as regulations to be followed by interlock providers governing their installation methods, reporting requirements and fees. While the DOT has always maintained records relevant to drunk driving arrests, the new law in 2001 codified this practice.

The OWI law created a “safe-ride” program allowing the Wisconsin Department of Transportation to grant funds to counties and municipalities for the purpose of giving people a “safe ride” home from the bar.

Municipal Court Rules Change For Drunk Driving

Wisconsin’s drunk driving law also changed to affect Municipal court practice slightly. Wis. Stat. sec. 800.03(4) changed to provide that an appearance "may be" -- rather than 'is' -- required by a "municipality" (not 'municipal court or judge') in a drunk driving case.

What Wisconsin Drunk Driving Law Does Do For OWI Convictions

Wisconsin’s drunk driving law does not require a judge to order seizure for forfeiture of a convicted person’s vehicle in a fourth or subsequent drunk driving or test refusal offense. Rather than being mandatory, vehicle forfeitures are optional; they may be ordered, but judges were given discretionary power in 2001 allowing them to order ignition interlocking device installation, immobilization, or forfeiture. Wisconsin's OWI law does not change the mandatory requirement that either an ignition interlocking device or immobilization must be ordered by the judge in any third drunk driving or test refusal case.

Wisconsin's drunk driving law does not remove the previous exception to high fine amounts when the convicted person cannot afford to pay them, conversely, it expands upon this area (see Financial Considerations above).

Free but professional "first-impression" analysis

If you are under investigation or have been arrested for any crime, or if you have already been convicted of a crime and believe your conviction to be wrong or your sentence too harsh, please call (608) 350-1004 or email the Attorneys at Tracey Wood & Associates right away. An Attorney at Tracey Wood & Associates will provide you with a brief but professional free "first-impression" analysis of your appeal based on the facts that you are able to convey. You can also submit your case online or email the attorneys.

OWI DUI Attorney Tracey Wood commonly works in the following Counties: Adams, Ashland,Barron,Bayfield,Brown,Buffalo,Burnett,Calumet,Chippewa,Clark,Columbia,Crawford,Dane,Dodge,Door,Douglas,Dunn,Eau Claire,Florence,Fond du Lac,Forest, Grant,Green,Green Lake,Iowa,Iron,Jackson,Jefferson,Juneau,Kenosha,Kewaunee,La Crosse,Lafayette,Langlade,Lincoln,Manitowoc,Marathon,Marinette,Marquette,Menominee, Milwaukee,Monroe,Oconto,Oneida,Outagamie,Ozaukee,Pepin,Pierce,Polk,Portage,Price,Racine,Richland,Rock,Rusk,Sauk,Sawyer,Shawano,Sheboygan,St. Croix,Taylor,Trempealeau, Vernon,Vilas,Walworth,Washburn,Washington,Waukesha,Waupaca,Waushara,Winnebago,Wood

Please take notice that although the law firm of Tracey Wood & Associates website contains a large amount of accurate and useful legal information about drunk driving, OWI, DUI, Sex Crimes, Expungement and other serious crimes, it is not intended to be used as legal advice. Only an attorney can counsel you on your specific case. Please contact the attorney at Tracey Wood & Associates immediately should you find yourself charged with a Drunk Driving in Wisconsin, a DUI (Driving Under the Influence), OWI (Operating Under the Influence) or any other serious crime in Wisconsin at (608) 350-1004. Even if your researching drunk driving laws or sex crime laws in Wisconsin, Lawyer Tracey Wood can assist you.

Attorney Tracey A. Wood , 6605 University Ave Suite 101 Middleton Wisconsin. (608) 350-1004

OWI DUI Sex Crimes Expungement Defense Lawyer Attorney Tracey Wood