Wilmington DWI Attorney

FREE DWI Consultation: (910) 595-1377

North Carolina has some of the strictest DWI laws in the nation. Even for a first-time offense, you may have your license revoked, face jail time, and be subject to fines. Protect your driving privileges and future today by calling our Wilmington NC DWI defense lawyer at James F. Rutherford, Attorney at Law, P.A.

Why Choose Our DWI Defense Lawyer in Wilmington, NC?

  • An advocate who truly cares for clients
  • 10+ years of trusted legal experience
  • Top-rating for ethics and legal skill (AV® rating)
  • Certified as a Specialist in Criminal Law
  • Certified in Standardized Field Sobriety Testing

We can help you understand your options and walk you through complex DWI laws. You can count on us to fight for the best possible outcome inside and outside of court.

Start with a FREE DWI consultation today.

DWI Penalties in North Carolina

In North Carolina, DWI penalties are based on "levels," with each level indicating the severity of the factors involved. Level A1 is the most serious while Level 5 is the least. When a judge assess DWI penalties, he or she will look at any mitigating or aggravating circumstances involved to determine your penalty level.

For a first-time DWI offense, you could be facing:

  • Up to 2 years in jail if grossly aggravating factors are involved
  • License revocation or suspension up to 1 year
  • Court costs and fines that increase if aggravating factors are involved
  • Community service

Was your license revoked? Schedule a DMV restoration hearing with our help.


For repeat offenders or DWI offenses with aggravating circumstances, you may be subject to higher fines, longer jail time, mandatory installation of an interlock ignition device, and longer suspension periods.

In addition to the criminal penalties, you may also face increased insurance premiums. In some extreme cases, you may even be denied coverage altogether if the company views you as a high-risk policyholder due to your DWI charges.

Put a Certified Specialist on Your Side

James F. Rutherford is a Certified Specialist in Criminal Law by the North Carolina State Bar and has been Certified in Standardized Field Sobriety Testing by the National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration. He has an in-depth understanding of the law and how field sobriety tests are conducted - along with their many flaws and inaccuracies. Level the legal playing field by putting his unique expertise on your side. We'll work hard to help you challenge the DWI evidence against you and build a strong defense.

Call a Wilmington DWI lawyer at (910) 595-1377 to explore your defense options.

Get the Expert Defense You Deserve