Boating Under
the Influence (BUI)

Charleston Boating Under the Influence (BUI) Defense Lawyers

If you face boating under the influence (BUI) charges in Charleston, South Carolina, you need an experienced attorney. The boating under the influence (BUI) defense lawyers at Murphy Crantford Meehan understand the serious nature of these charges and stand ready to protect your rights and fight for the best possible outcome in your case.

South Carolina Boating Under The Influence (BUI) Penalties

In South Carolina, it is illegal to operate a moving motorized water device while under the influence. The legal alcohol limit for boaters is a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08% or higher, the same as for driving a car. However, you can face BUI charges even if your BAC is lower than 0.08% if your ability to operate the watercraft is materially and appreciably impaired.
The penalties for a first conviction of boating under the influence in South Carolina can include:

Repeat offenses and cases involving great bodily injury or death carry even harsher penalties, including longer jail sentences and permanent loss of boating privileges. A second BUI conviction within ten years can result in fines of up to $5,000 and jail time for up to one year. A third or subsequent conviction is a felony BUI, punishable by up to $10,000 in fines and 3-5 years in prison.

Our Approach to BUI Cases

At Murphy Crantford Meehan, we understand the stress and fear associated with a BUI charge. Facing a BUI presents a substantial risk to your freedom and future, and our team is dedicated to guiding you through the legal process, defending your rights, and securing the best possible outcome. Our BUI attorneys will:

Boating Safety and Legal Compliance

Every boat driver in South Carolina must possess a boating license and is encouraged to complete a boating safety course for better navigation and understanding of South Carolina waterways. Boating safety is paramount as operating any motorized water device carries substantial risks. The afloat test battery is a critical tool in evaluating a boater’s capability to meet legal limit requirements and operate under the influence tests effectively.

Field sobriety tests and breathalyzer tests are crucial and are conducted by the arresting officer at the police station to ensure adherence to BUI laws. The accuracy of the breath test machine, critical in the pen test, must be maintained to correctly determine the blood alcohol content.

BUI suspects may face criminal charges if there is minimal evidence to support claims of operating under the influence of alcohol during the summer months, when boating activity peaks. Convicted individuals may need to consider their legal options carefully, especially when facing potential criminal records from such BUI cases.

Severe incidents that result in reckless homicide or permanent disfigurement may lead to escalated charges such as a third offense or more severe consequences. Utilizing local natural resources responsibly and adhering to driving under the influence laws can mitigate the risks and consequences associated with boating under the influence.

Why Choose Murphy Crantford Meehan

Defending BUI charges requires in-depth knowledge of South Carolina’s boating laws and criminal justice system. The attorneys at Murphy Crantford Meehan have extensive experience handling these complex cases in the Charleston area. We are a local law firm deeply rooted in the community and dedicated to protecting the rights of the accused.

Our founding partners, William C. Crantford and Jerry A. Meehan, Jr., are skilled trial lawyers and prestigious Trial Lawyers College graduates. They have achieved successful outcomes for clients in a wide range of criminal defense matters, including BUI and DUI cases. When you work with our firm, you can expect:

Choosing the right defense lawyer can make all the difference in the outcome of your case. At Murphy Crantford Meehan, we have the skills, experience, and dedication to provide the highest quality representation. We will take the time to understand your unique situation and develop a customized strategy tailored to your needs and goals.

Our attorneys have deep roots in the Charleston community and a proven record of success in criminal defense cases. We know the local courts, judges, and prosecutors, and we use our knowledge and experience to your advantage. Whether you face your first BUI charge or have prior convictions, we will fight tirelessly to protect your rights and secure the best possible result.


Contact a Charleston BUI Defense Lawyer Today

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Don’t let a boating under the influence charge jeopardize your future. Contact the criminal defense attorneys at Murphy Crantford Meehan for skilled, aggressive representation. We will review your case, explain your options, and develop a tailored defense strategy to protect your rights and secure the best possible outcome. Our Charleston, SC, law firm serves clients throughout the Lowcountry, including in Mount Pleasant, North Charleston, Summerville, and the surrounding areas. We are ready to put our experience and dedication to work for you. Contact us today to schedule your free consultation. The sooner you reach out, the sooner we can start fighting for you.

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