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What is the Difference Between a DUI and a DWI?

You’ve probably heard the terms DUI and DWI used interchangeably, but what is the difference? Is there a difference? The differences between a DUI and DWI depend largely on the state in which the offense occurred, with some states distinguishing between them and others using the abbreviations interchangeably. Let’s take a closer look at the difference between the two.

What is the Difference Between a DUI and a DWI


The term DUI refers to “driving under the influence”, meaning that the individual was caught driving a car under the influence of alcohol or other substances. In this case the driver in question has a positive blood alcohol test and is deemed unable to legally drive a car. A DWI, on the other hand, stands for “driving while intoxicated”, or in some cases “driving while impaired”. This means the driver is operating a car while intoxicated by alcohol, or other substances. On the surface these two things sound the same, and in some states they generally are, but in other states the two charges may not carry the same consequences.

Which is Worse?

In the state of Maryland, a DUI is worse than a DWI. A DUI is charged when the driver has a blood alcohol level of over 0.08 and was substantially impaired by alcohol. A DWI is commonly charged when the driver has a blood alcohol level of somewhere between 07 and .08 and can be proven impaired by alcohol. When it comes to charging for either offense in Maryland, a DUI will come with longer jail sentences and heftier fines.

What Can You Do?

If you’ve been charged with a DUI or DWI, it is essential for you to speak with an attorney who specializes in this area of law. If you are in Maryland, and received a DUI or DWI, it is wise to work closely with a Maryland DUI attorney. They can help you navigate Maryland’s specific laws in regards to DUIs and DWIs and get the best possible outcome for your situation. Each state has their own set of traffic laws in relation to driving while intoxicated, so working with a lawyer specific to your state is crucial.

If you’ve been arrested for a DUI or DWI in Maryland and are in need to guidance, call the Law Office of Ross W. Albers today. We are an experienced Maryland DUI law firm and specialize in traffic violations and can help you navigate the aftermath of a DUI or DWI. The sooner we begin working on your case, the sooner you can get on with your life—so give us a call today!