There are multiple penalties you face if you are arrested with a DUI charge.
What is Driving Under the Influence (DUI)?
A Driving Under the Influence (DUI) offense can be charged when a person drives a vehicle while under the influence of alcohol, or in some jurisdictions, under the influence of drugs. All states have legal limits regarding the amount of alcohol that can be in your system. This level, called “blood alcohol content” or BAC is 0.08% in California. If you are over this limit and drive a vehicle you are considered to be driving under the influence and can be charged.
If you are pulled over for suspected DUI, you will be subjected to field sobriety tests by the police officer who pulled you over. If you fail this test, chances are you will be asked to perform a breath test, where your breath is measured to determine your BAC. If it’s determined to be over the legal limit, you will be arrested.
Penalties for DUI
There are various penalties for DUI. The severity of the penalties is determined by the factors of the arrest. Was the person pulled over for suspected DUI? Or did the person driving under the influence cause an accident where someone was injured or killed? Typically, for a first arrest, where no damage was caused, a driver is subject to fines and the loss of their license. They may also be required to take additional classes for alcohol treatment. But for a second or third offense, depending on the jurisdiction, the driver might be subject to the following:
- Imprisonment ranging 10 days to 1 year.
- Community service.
- Fines ranging from $750 to $1000. This is dependent on BAC level or circumstances of arrest
- DUI school
- Loss of driving privileges
- Vehicle impounded
- Installation of an interlock ignition device that measures the driver’s BAC prior to the ignition of the car. If the BAC measurement is above the legal limit, the car will not be able to be driven, and the data is sent to authorities.
- In some cases, DUI can lead to loss of employment and auto insurance, loss of immigration status, loss of scholarships or financial aid, loss of gun ownership rights.
If you have been charged with a DUI, even if it’s your first offense, you should contact a DUI lawyer who can help defend your case in a court of law. They will work to gather all evidence as they build a case for you.
Source: Law Dictionary, Hong Long Will I Spend In Jail For My 2nd DUI? 2014