Criminal Law


Arrested for DWI in Wilmington, Bolvia, Southport, Leland, New Hanover, Brunswick, Pender, Columbus, Bladen? What You Need to Know Now.

What the State Has to Prove

The State has to prove three (3) things to win their case against you: (1) driving, (2) on a public roadway in the County, and (3) BAC (blood alcohol concentration) of 0.08 or greater and/or mental/physical impairment. The first two elements are usually a given. But not always. It is the third element that is usually disputed.

DWI Arrest

If an officer detects alcohol on your breath, they begin the DWI investigation and possibly DWI arrest. First, you will be asked questions while being asked to retrieve requested documents such as your driver’s license. These are designed to see if you can answer the question and perform the task. Next, you will be asked to step out of your car and perform “Field Sobriety Tests” on the side of the road. The Standardized Field Sobriety Tests include the Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus, Walk and Turn, and One Leg Stand.

What Is Going to Happen In Court

Contact a lawyer as soon as you are arrested for DWI/DUI. Your first court date and time is shown on the arrest documents given to you when released. All Wilmington, Bolvia, Southport, Leland, New Hanover, Brunswick, Pender, Columbus, Bladen DWI cases begin with the initial court appearance. If you hire Bingham Law, PLLC you will sign a Waiver of Appearance form so that we can appear on your behalf for most court proceedings. You will not have to be present for some court appearances. The attorney will examine all documents in your file and request a continuance. In the meantime, we will file several standard Motions and request any video evidence that may be available in your case.

There are several court dates during which we collect all of the State’s evidence, including video. We personally interview the arresting officer to ask for all details pertaining to your arrest. Once we have all the evidence and have carefully reviewed it, we will go over your options so that you can decide what is best for you. We will answer all of your questions, review the pros and cons of your specific case, and give you our advice. You will decide how to proceed. We do not pressure clients to proceed with any specific course of action. Rather, we advise and suggest options. It is always your case and always your decision.


Should I Fight a DWI?

Absolutely YES! A DWI conviction is a permanent criminal record. In addition, you can lose your license, your job, and maybe even your freedom. Do not give up without a fight. Understand all your options before the state limits your options and your freedom.


Is My DWI A Felony?

Unless there is serious injury or death, a DWI is a misdemeanor, not a felony. But remember, if you are convicted or plead guilty a DWI/DUI does appear on your record and cannot expunged even years later. The burden of proof is on the State of North Carolina, and the district attorney must prove all elements of DWI/DUI. The Attorney knows what is involved and how the process works and can explain what to expect and answer the questions that are haunting you. If you decide to argue your case and fight the charges charges, we will prepare you for trial. If you decide to plea, we will prepare available mitigating factors with the goal of minimizing your final sentence and the judgment. You are the client. The attorney works for you!


Drunk Driving / DWI / DUI Conviction

DWI/DUI cases are expensive and the consequences can be long-lasting. Even with a first offense sometimes you will face strict penalties. The law permits a broad range of punishment for a DWI/DUI offense, including:

  • Jail Time, Community Service
  • $!!!
  • Loss of driving privileges.
  • Ignition interlock system on your vehicle.
  • Vehicle seizure.


Your Driver’s License

How do I get my license back?  People have to work and obviously get to court appearances. When arrested, the police take your license and say you can’t drive for thirty (30) days. This is a civil revocation and, in many cases, will can have you driving very soon.


Challenge the Suspension With the DMV

A DMV challenge hearing is an expedited procedure in which the State must be given 3 days’ notice. After that we may will appear in front of a District Court judge on your behalf. You do not have to be present. If approved, your license is restored in full. No restrictions or limitations unless limitations already existed.


Limited Driving Privilege (LDP)

We can petition the court for a Limited Driving Privilege (LDP) after ten (10) days from the date arrested. This process requires two items from our client. First, they will have to have a substance abuse assessment (just the assessment, not the treatment). Next, the client will need to have their insurance company send confirmation to our firm of existing insurance on a Form DL-123. We will prepare the necessary documents and submit to a District Court judge for approval. After the judge signs, we file the executed LDP along with your $100 fee.

These documents then become your “license” for the next twenty (20) days. However, you are restricted to driving only to and from work during certain time periods. Then, thirty (30) days after arrest, you pay another $100 fee to fully restore your license.


Why Should I Speak to a Lawyer?

When Bingham Law represents you will speak to the attorney. We love our paralegal and they are brilliant, but sometimes you need to hear it from the Attorney’s mouth. We know you are stressed and we want to be there for you during this time. This is why we do this work and promise to be your “Rock in a hard Place.”

How Can We Help?

Would you like more information on our legal services or to set up a consultation? Give us a call or send us a message and we will be in touch soon.

Phone: (910) 742-0787
Fax: (910) 343-4227


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