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BUI Who You Hire Makes a Difference

Seattle BUI Attorney

For many, taking a boat out on the water and enjoying alcohol is great way to unwind and a celebrated summer pastime. However, Washington State has recently cracked down on boating under the influence offenses, or BUI, and has enhanced penalties to be even harsher for those convicted. Now, a BUI conviction can mean hefty fines and even significant jail time for the accused.

If you have been charged with boating under the influence in Washington, we invite you to contact us at Guadagno Law, PLLC. Our Seattle BUI lawyers have more than a decade of experience in protecting the rights of clients facing the most serious of charges. Our aggressive, results-driven approach means not only will you voice be heard before the law, but that every possible defense avenue will be pursued to its fullest extent.

Why clients are choosing Guadagno Law, PLLC:

  • 24/7 emergency services for your time of need
  • Free, initial case consultations
  • Responsive, compassionate, attentive legal counsel
  • Aggressive defense strategies from former prosecutors

Retain a Seattle BUI attorney capable of producing results. Contact us at (206) 895-6800 for a FREE initial consultation today.

What are the BUI Laws in Washington State?

In 2015, state legislature made the penalties for BUI more severe than they had been in years past. Previously, BUI was a simple misdemeanor, but now the offense is considered a "gross misdemeanor" with more serious consequences and protocols that more closely resemble DUI laws.

BUI Penalties in Washington

In Washington State, boating under the influence (BUI) is considered a gross misdemeanor and can result in up to a year in jail and/or a fine up to $5,000. While your license cannot be suspended, the penalties if someone is seriously injured, or dies, as a result of BUI can be harsh.

Being convicted of boating under the influence of alcohol or drugs can incur the following additional penalties:

  • Boat operators are now subject to implied consent breathalyzer laws. If an officer asks him or her to submit to a breathalyzer test and the defendant refuses, he or she can be subject to a Class 1 Civil Infraction, which can result in a fine of up to $2,050.
  • A BUI that caused serious injury to another person can result in ten years in prison and/or $20,000 in fines, while a BUI that involved someone's death can result in a life sentence in prison and/or $50,000 in fines.
  • Note that BUI convictions do not result in driver's license suspensions.

Questions on Boating Under the Influence in Washington State

To properly build a powerful defense against your BUI charges, you will need to understand the boating laws in Washington. Below, we shed some light on some of the laws pertaining to the operation of a boat.

Do you need a license to drive a boat in Washington?

Since 2005, the state of Washington began phasing in a law that requires mandatory boating education for all boaters. The final phase of this law went into effect in 2016 which requires all boaters over 12 years old to have a Boater Education Card. This is not required if you are renting or leasing a motor boat or vessel.

When is a person considered “under the influence” of alcohol or a drug?

If the person has 0.08 grams or more of alcohol per two hundred liters of breath the boater can be classified as illegally intoxicated. This can be measured by their breath. Another measurement would be based on whether they appear to be affected by an intoxicating liquor or drug.

How should you respond if pulled over?

As a boater, you are required to respond to the law enforcement officer’s request to stop your boat. It is against the law to evade the officer or ignore his or her demands.

Can you have alcohol on a boat?

It is not illegal to have alcohol on a water vessel. You are allowed to drink on a boat, but it is against the law to operate the vessel while under the influence.

Request a FREE Consultation: (206) 895-6800

Defending against BUI charges is not quite the same as countering DUI charges, and it is extremely important that you retain counsel familiar and capable in this area. BUIs are policed by different agencies (like the Coast Guard) and are subject to different protocols and probable cause issues. Do not face these charges without counsel you can count on.

Contact me at Guadagno Law, PLLC for a FREE case evaluation today.

Our Satisfied Clients

  • “I was able to win my case due to him.”
    After having experienced one of the most difficult times in my life after being charged for a crime, I contacted Albert at Guadagno Law. Albert was able to help me in this difficult time and was able to take a very stressful situation and put me at ease. Albert promised that he would work hard and diligently for me, and he did. I was able to win my case due to him. Albert was gracious, direct, and honest about my case and what he was going to do to help me win. I will highly recommend Guadagno Law if one needs to seek legal advice.
    - Ben
  • “Impressive defense attorney”
    I have never had to hire an attorney before and Albert was just amazing. He took on my case quickly and was incredibly efficient and professional. He spent hours with me on the phone over several months, helping to ease my fears and worries and offering words of encouragement and advice. Albert is kind, thoughtful and generous with his time and I consider him a friend. He was very supportive to me during such A difficult time in my life. He fought tirelessly for me and my family with great success. He truly went above and beyond to fight for a full dismissal. I highly recommend his services.
    - Coral
  • “Puts his heart & soul into protecting his clients”
    I have been a client of Alberts for going on 3 years, he has been there for me during a very difficult time in my life. Never was there a time when I was not able to be in contact him, weekday or weekends. He has given his all to go to bat for me and defend me in every possible way. He is very educated in his profession! I have again and again recommended him to anyone I know who is in need of representation.
    - Jay M.
  • “Albert was incredible!!”
    Albert was absolutely amazing! He quickly took my case on short notice and helped me immensely. I highly recommend him. If you are hesitant or feeling apprehensive, DONT!! He is worth every penny
    - Tracy
  • “The best and professional lawyer”
    Mr.Guadagno is very professional, friendly , attentive and very supportive when you face a difficult situation. Gave you support and comfort makes you feel you have someone who really cares and is there to help you. Always available to reach regardless if it is week days or weekend. Response to you immediately and works with you. We really really appreciate his support in a time we were stressed out he gave us so much comfort. Really recommend him to others. Grateful to know him .
    - Adiba
  • “Excelente”
    Sinceramente estoi satisfecha porque Alberto Guandageno Alludo muy bien enel casi de mi hijo lo recomiendo hiso un excelente trabajo en la defensa de mi hijo si yo le mandaba textos me respondía en minutos si le abla a por teléfono inmediatamente me respondía igual si le escribí correos electrónicos respondía rápido y me desia esactamente lo que estaba pasando enel caso de mi hijo porque mi hijo dio autorización que me dijera lo que pasaba y gracias a él abogado Alberto todo salió bien es un ángel que Dios pone en el camino de los que nesesitan su alluda muchas gracias abogado Alberto Guandageno
    - Mamá feliz
  • “Albert Guadagno truly cares”
    Albert really goes above and beyond to not only treat you as a client - but as a human. He listens to your situation, tries to understand from different sides, and lets you know what to expect honestly without sugar-coating. His year’s of experience in law really helps you navigate a, sometimes, convoluted legal system with confidence affordably and with careful attention to detail. Highly recommend.
    - Kienan
  • “110% in your corner”
    Albert is 110% in your corner. His prior experience as a prosecutor is what drew me to hiring him. He knows the process from all sides and will fight for you as well as explain outcome possibilities in great detail. He is also a tremendous listener who empathizes and puts your mind at ease (without giving you false expectations) He is a consummate professional of whom I would hire again if needed. Go with someone that not only has the knowledge and skills to help you through your case, but will also be a human being by listening to your concerns. Go with Albert.
    - CS

Why Choose Guadagno Law, PLLC?

  • I offer affordable payment plans to focus on what matters.
  • I have over 17 years of criminal defense experience.
  • I have a sole focus on criminal defense law.
  • I am on call for 24-hour emergency counsel.
  • I have handled thousands of cases over the years.
  • I have worked on both sides of the criminal courtroom.