BUI Attorney



Have you been arrested for Boating Under the Influence?

Whether it is your first offense, a boating accident, or a second or third offense it is important to understand what you have been charged with, why you have been charged, and the legal process prior to court.

The law states that if a person is operating a vessel within the State of Florida and is under the influence of an alcoholic beverage, a chemical substance, or a controlled substance they may be guilty of the offense of boating under the influence when affected to the extent that the person’s normal faculties are impaired.

What are normal faculties?

The Florida Supreme Court jury instructions defines normal faculties as follows: “Normal faculties” include but are not limited to the ability to see, hear, walk, talk, judge distances, operate a vessel, make judgments, act in emergencies and, in general, to normally perform the many mental and physical acts of our daily lives.

Typically the BUI investigation may include the interview of the vessel operator, the observations of the officer while speaking to the vessel operator, and the performance on the Field Sobriety Exercises.

bui2Some of the Field Sobriety Exercises the operator may be asked to perform are as follows:

Interview and observations of the operator

Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus (HGN)

Alphabet Recital

Finger to Nose Exercise

Walk and Turn

One Leg Stand

Because one does not need a license to operator a vessel a conviction of BUI does not affect one’s driver’s license however if convicted the person is still subject to mandatory sanctions.

If you have been arrested for BUI it is important to understand your legal rights and the possible sanctions you may face before you go to court.