Proactive Strategies for Clients Facing Federal DUI Charges

Upholding the rights of visitors and residents in Sevierville, Seymour, Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge

A DUI conviction in Tennessee is serious business; our state has some of the strictest laws on the books, and the fines and penalties can be severe. Being convicted of a federal DUI, however, can be far worse. Unfortunately, both residents and tourists are likely to be charged with a federal DUI while driving around Sevier County because of its close proximity to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, which is about half a million acres of federally protected lands and roads – roads that extend into areas like Gatlinburg, Seymour and Pigeon Forge.

When you are charged with a federal DUI, you want a local attorney on your side who knows not only the laws of both Tennessee and the federal government, but who is intimately familiar with the roads in the area. The Sevierville federal DUI defense lawyers of Delius & McKenzie, PLLC have defended countless clients accused of driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. You can rely on us to protect your rights and your future.

Fast facts about federal DUIs

A federal DUI/DWI charge is similar to a state charge, but it can have different, permanent effects on your life. If you are convicted:

  • The DUI charge stays on your permanent, federal record forever. Only a pardon from the President of the United States can have it expunged.
  • A federal conviction of any kind can keep you from working in jobs requiring security clearances of any kind, which means any dreams you may have had of working for local, state or the federal government are gone. Further this will affect your ability to work for private sector contractors that often work with the government.
  • You must be represented by an attorney who can practice in federal court, as our attorneys can.
  • If your federal DUI involved allegations of drug use, you could face federal drug charges in addition to the DUI/DWI.

Because there are no fast and hard laws regarding federal DUI – outside of those occurring on military bases or in national parks – the state laws are used as a guide, under the Assimilative Crimes Act. Tennessee’s harsh penalties and fines for a DUI conviction mean that your first thought upon being ticketed should be to call a local Sevierville attorney to help you fight the charges.

Great Smoky Mountains National Park

The laws governing federal DUIs are different in national parks, and the Smokies are no exception. Under the Code of Federal Regulations:

“The possession or consumption of an alcoholic beverage and/or the possession of a bottle, can or other receptacle containing an alcoholic beverage that is open, or that has been opened, or whose seal is broken or the contents of which has been partially removed is prohibited as noted herein. This alcohol prohibition includes all park areas within the park boundary except: government owned housing, overnight lodging facilities, designated picnic areas, the Appalachian Clubhouse, the Spence cabin and frontcountry and backcountry campgrounds and shelters…. The Superintendent may authorize the possession and consumption of alcoholic beverages as part of a special event.”

If you are caught driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol in a federal park, you can be convicted of at least a Class B misdemeanor, which means you’ll spend up to 6 months in a federal prison and pay fines worth up to $5,000 – and that is only if you have no enhancements added, such as driving drunk with a child in the car, or blowing well over the legal BAC in a breathalyzer, for example. Federal DUI charges also come with a mandatory chemical test; if you refuse, you can lose your license anyway.

Delius & McKenzie, PLLC knows what is at stake when you are charged with a federal DUI. We fight hard and fast for our clients, because time is of the essences when you are facing criminal charges. We keep you in the loop about the progression of your case, and we advocate aggressively to have your charges dropped completely, so you can avoid having a federal conviction on your record forever.

Trust an experienced Sevierville federal DUI attorney to protect your future

Federal charges of any nature are no joke; they can cost you thousands of dollars in fines, the career or education you want, and your freedom. Delius & McKenzie, PLLC helps to protect people in and around Sevierville, Seymour, Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge who have been charged with a DUI on federal lands. To make an appointment with our team, please call 865-428-8780 or fill out our contact form. Our team offers in-custody visits.