Drivers in care or control of their vehicle who blow a blood-alcohol concentration reading (BAC) of .05 or higher face an Immediate Roadside Prohibition (IRP). With prohibitions lasting anywhere from three to 90 days, drivers face a litany of consequences that can affect their personal and professional lives. The following case study and set of FAQ show why, even if you think there isn’t a chance, you should always consult an attorney before accepting the consequences.
Upon issuance of your Notice of Driving Prohibition, you will face a driving prohibition, monetary fine, and other consequences such as referral to remedial programs; however, the means by which police officers collect evidence and the Crown hands down punishment have come under criticism since the establishment of new laws. As criminal defence attorneys in Vancouver, we handle driving prohibition cases, and could be able to help you avoid these life-altering circumstances.
Q: If I receive an IRP, is there an exception to drive to work?
A: No. Once you receive your suspension, you must not drive. There is no provision for education or employment purposes. If you drive during your prohibited period, you may face fines or prison.
Q: I feel as though the Crown’s case is strong. Is there any point in a review?
A: As a citizen that likely has little experience with the law, it is impossible to discern much just from your Notice of Driving Prohibition. An experienced lawyer on the other hand can discern quite a bit from your police report, which is often 10 pages or more. It is always worth a review.
Q: Why have IRPs been so heavily criticized?
A: We in no form condone driving under the influence, and we fully agree with the government’s stance on strict anti-drunk driving laws, but as defence attorneys, we take serious issue with IRPs. For one, roadside testing methods are notoriously unreliable. Another issue we have is that an IRP is a severe punishment handed down without a trial. This is why we take defending these cases so seriously.
Q: Is this a criminal charge?
Q: Is an IRP a criminal charge?
A: No. For now, you face no criminal charges. You cannot be convicted for any impaired driving offences on the basis of the evidence they have collected for your IRP. However, should you drive during your prohibition period, you may face criminal penalties.
An Immediate Roadside Prohibition Case Study
Perhaps the most serious consequence for British Columbians as it pertains to an IRP is the threat of losing their ability to work. This was especially true for our client in this case study. As a professional truck driver, his license was not merely his means of commuting to work, it was his job in totality. With no ability to drive, he faced the threat of losing the career he had worked so hard to build.
After he blew 2.5 times the legal limit, he contacted us to take his case. Upon review of the evidence, we found that he was not even in control or care of his vehicle when the police dealt with him. This made it extremely likely that his IRP held no water. The adjudicator agreed and overturned the prohibition. Had he merely accepted the IRP, he may very well be unemployed at the moment.
Verdict: IRP overturned. Our client kept his license and his job.
An Immediate Roadside Prohibition comes with serious consequences, but as this case study shows, there is a chance that a criminal defence team that specializes in these cases can help you avoid losing your ability to drive. If your job depends on your driver’s license, you can’t afford not to speak to an attorney today.