DWI/DUI Vehicle & Property Forfeiture

Scott County DWI Lawyer & Attorney

In some DWI cases, Minnesota law gives law enforcement the authority to seize a motor vehicle or other property involved in a DWI/DUI. This can create a hardship for an individual who needs their vehicle to go back and forth to work or school and run errands. There is also the fact the vehicle may be permanently lost as a result of the act.

If you have been charged with DWI and vehicle or property forfeiture is one of the consequences, there are ways in which it can be challenged with the help of a Waconia DWI lawyer.

Aggressive DWI Defense

There are different circumstances in which a person’s vehicle may be forfeited. They are:

  • The current offense is the third within a 10 year period.
  • The current offense is the second within 10 years and the driver had a child under the age of 16 in the vehicle or the blood alcohol concentration was .20 or higher.
  • The current offense is the fourth within the past 10 years and the current charge is felony DWI.
  • The driver is charged with any type of DWI or test refusal while their driver’s license is cancelled due to being inimical to public safety.
  • The driver is charged with any type of DWI or test refusal while the license is under a restriction, such as a B-Card restriction that prohibits the consumption of any alcohol while the restriction is in place.

If it is determined by the arresting officer that the vehicle is subject to forfeiture, they can seize it immediately and keep possession of the vehicle and any other property while legal proceedings are pending. The law enforcement agency must also issue a Notice of Seizure and Intent to Forfeit to the driver and anyone else who may have ownership of the vehicle.

Fighting Vehicle Forfeiture

Vehicle forfeiture can be challenged. For instance, the vehicle is only subject to forfeiture if the owner of the vehicle knew or should have known that their vehicle was used or intended to be used while the driver was intoxicated. If the driver is the owner, then the vehicle is subject to forfeiture. If the driver is not and they did not know the vehicle would be used in a criminal act, they will be able to retain their vehicle.

There are times in which a Minnesota DWI lawyer can successfully challenge forfeiture, but that is when it is determined by the judge that the forfeiture was not legal. There is only 30 days to file a demand for a judicial determination of the forfeiture, so it is important to talk to your attorney about challenging the legality of it as soon as possible.

Contact A Shakopee DWI Attorney

Vehicle and property forfeiture is a consequence of DWI in some cases. The arresting officer can forfeit or seize the motor vehicle and any other property involved in the DWI incident. With the help of an experienced DWI attorney, you can fight the DWI charges and follow the necessary procedures to get your vehicle back before it is too late. To learn more about your rights and options, call Langemo Law at 952-556-0056 to schedule a free consultation.