“Driving Under the Influence”
The offense of “driving under the influence” is described differently depending on the State you live in. In Nevada, it is described as “DUI” which stands for “driving under the influence.” Other States refer to the offense as OUI (“operating under the influence”), DWI (“driving while intoxicated”), DUII (“driving under the influence of an intoxicant”), OMVI (“operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated”) and the list goes on and on. It is important to note that DUI in Nevada is generally used to describe all forms of driving under the influence, including “drunken driving” as well as “drugged driving.” Nevada’s DUI laws or “statutes” are codified in Chapter 484C of Nevada’s Revised Statutes (“NRS”).
In Nevada, you are “driving under the influence” when you drive, or are in “actual physical control” of a vehicle on a highway or on “premises to which the public has access” while under the influence of an intoxicating liquor, a prohibited substance, a controlled substance or any other chemical, poison or insolvent which renders you incapable of safely driving. Like nearly every other state, Nevada has “per se” DUI laws which means that the law will consider you legally impaired regardless of whether you are actually impaired.
Nevada’s “Per Se” DUI Law
Nearly every state has adopted a “per se” DUI Law. In Nevada, you are “per se” driving under the influence if you have a blood alcohol content (“BAC”) of 0.08 or higher or if a specific amount of a prohibited substance is found in your blood or urine. “Per se under the influence” means that you are automatically considered to be in violation of Nevada’s DUI laws regardless of whether you are actually drunk, drugged or otherwise impaired to a degree rendering you incapable of safely operating a motor vehicle. In addition to the per se law, you can also be convicted of a Nevada DUI for “driving under the influence” of an intoxicating liquor or controlled substance. The “under the influence” law allows the State to charge you even where your BAC or prohibited substance level is not equal to or greater than the prescribed per se levels. Thus, you could conceivably have a BAC of 0.06 and still be charged with and convicted of a Nevada DUI.