State-by-State Info In US On DUI Penalties

Not all Driving Under Influence (DUI) or Driving While Intoxicated (DWI) laws are equal. Each state defines the severity and punishments based on its own standards. That’s why in most states, it is considered a serious criminal offense, whereas, in other states, a first-time offense is regarded as a mere civil infraction.

Similarly, in some states, a judge has discretion in enforcing punishment, but the law calls for mandatory sentences in others.

The laws for DUI may vary in different states, but every state has the same maximum limit of 0.8% of BAC (Blood Alcohol Content). There may be a slight variation in legal limits for different drivers, such as young drivers and commercial and professional drivers. The legal limit of BAC for these classes of drivers is lower and varies from state to state.

DUI Penalties

Most states have severe punishments for convicted drivers with a high BAC (blood alcohol content). The penalties for drivers having a high BAC include increased fines, jail time, and suspension periods.

Furthermore, felons can have their driving license or license plates suspended. When someone is charged with DUI, they will usually have to go through two steps in most states. These two steps include a criminal hearing held in a criminal court and an administrative driver’s license hearing.

If the convicted person has multiple charges or a previous conviction, they are more likely to get mandatory jail time. Such actions can increase your insurance rates and impact your ability to find a new job. In most states, traffic violations are tracked through a points system.

Some of the common penalties when charged with DUI:

  • License plates suspension
  • Imprisonment in states jail
  • Vehicle confiscation
  • License plate suspension
  • IID (Ignition Interlock device) restrictions
  • Attendance at DUI school
  • Community service
  • Drug screening
  • House arrest

How long does a DUI stays on your record?

There can also be additional penalties in different situations, such as having a minor in the vehicle. Following is the list of penalties and the period of how long does a DUI stays on your record in different states.

Alabama

  • Legal Alcohol Limit is 0.02% for under 21 or school bus drivers; 0.08% for other drivers.
  • Jail Time: N/A
  • Fine: $600
  • License suspension: 90 Days
  • Period DUI stays on record: 5 years

Alaska

  • Legal Alcohol Limit: 0.08% within 4 hours of driving vehicle
  • Jail Time: 72 hours
  • Fine: $1,500
  • License suspension: 90 Days
  • Period DUI stays on record: For life

Arizona

  • Legal Alcohol Limit: 0.08% within 2 hours of driving.
  • Jail Time: 24 hours
  • Fine: $250
  • License suspension: 90 days and 12 months of IID.
  • Period DUI stays on record: 8 points with a point length of 3 years; DUI period for 5 years.

Arkansas

  • Legal Alcohol Limit: 0.08%
  • Jail Time: 24 hours
  • Fine: $250
  • License suspension: 6-month suspension.
  • Period DUI stays on record: 14 points for 3 years; DUI period for 5 years.

California

  • Legal Alcohol Limit: 0.08% and 0.04% for commercial drivers
  • Jail Time: 96 hours (48 hours continuous)
  • Fine: $390
  • License suspension: 4-month administrative suspension or 6-month criminal suspension
  • Period DUI stays on record: 2 points with a point length of 13 years; DUI period for 10 years.

Colorado

  • Legal Alcohol Limit: 0.08% whereas for under age 21 is 0.02
  • Jail Time: 5 days
  • Fine: $600
  • License suspension: 90-day administrative suspension or 9-month criminal suspension
  • Period DUI stays on record: 8 points for 2 years; DUI period for 10 years.

Connecticut

  • Legal Alcohol Limit: 0.08%, 0.04% for commercial drivers, and 0.02% for under 21
  • Jail Time: 2 days
  • Fine: $500
  • License suspension: 45-day suspension
  • Period DUI stays on record: 3 points for 2 years; DUI period for 10 years.

Delaware

  • Legal Alcohol Limit: 0.08% and 0.02% for under 21
  • Jail Time: N/A
  • Fine: $500
  • License suspension: 3-months suspension
  • Period DUI stays on record: 5 years.

District of Columbia

  • Legal Alcohol Limit: 0.08% BAC, 0.01% in urine, and zero tolerance under age 21
  • Jail Time: N/A
  • Fine: $500
  • License suspension: 6-months suspension
  • Period DUI stays on record: N/A

Florida

  • Legal Alcohol Limit: 0.08% BAC
  • Jail Time: 8 hours
  • Fine: $500
  • License suspension: 6-months suspension
  • Period DUI stays on record: 75 years

Georgia

  • Legal Alcohol Limit: 0.08%, 0.04% for commercial drivers, and 0.02% for under 21
  • Jail Time: 2 days
  • Fine: $500
  • License suspension: 45-days suspension
  • Period DUI stays on record: 10 years

Hawaii

  • Legal Alcohol Limit: 0.08%, 0.02% for under age 21
  • Jail Time: 48 hours
  • Fine: $150
  • License suspension: 90-days suspension
  • Period DUI stays on record: 5 years

Idaho

  • Legal Alcohol Limit: 0.08%, 0.04% for commercial drivers, and 0.02% for under 21
  • Jail Time: 48 hours
  • Fine: $1000
  • License suspension: 90-day suspension
  • Period DUI stays on record: For life

Illinois

  • Legal Alcohol Limit: 0.08% BAC, 0.01% in urine, and zero tolerance under age 21
  • Jail Time: 5 days or community service
  • Fine: $750
  • License suspension: 90-day suspension and possible restricted license after 30 days
  • Period DUI stays on record: For life

Indiana

  • Legal Alcohol Limit: 0.08% BAC
  • Jail Time: N/A
  • Fine: $500
  • License suspension: 180-day administrative license suspension
  • Period DUI stays on record: For life

Iowa

  • Legal Alcohol Limit: 0.08% and 0.02% for under 21
  • Jail Time: 48 hours
  • Fine: $1000
  • License suspension: 180-day suspension and possible restricted license after 30 days.
  • Period DUI stays on record: 12 years

Kansas

  • Legal Alcohol Limit: 0.08% within 3 hours of driving, 0.04% for commercial drivers, and 0.02% under age 21
  • Jail Time: 48 hours
  • Fine: $750
  • License suspension: 30-day suspension
  • Period DUI stays on record: For life

Kentucky

  • Legal Alcohol Limit: 0.08% within 2 hours of driving, .04% for commercial drivers, and .02% under age 21
  • Jail Time: 48 hours
  • Fine: $200
  • License suspension: 30-day suspension
  • Period DUI stays on record: 5 years

Louisiana

  • Legal Alcohol Limit: 0.08% while operating, .04% for commercial drivers, and 0.02% under age 21
  • Jail Time: 48 hours
  • Fine: $300
  • License suspension: 90-day suspension
  • Period DUI stays on record: 10 years

Maine

  • Legal Alcohol Limit: 08% while operating and zero tolerance under age 21
  • Jail Time: N/A
  • Fine: $500
  • License suspension: 150-day suspension
  • Period DUI stays on record: For life

Maryland

  • Legal Alcohol Limit: 0.08% BAC
  • Jail Time: N/A
  • Fine: $1000 maximum
  • License suspension: 180-day suspension
  • Period DUI stays on record: 5 years

Massachusetts

  • Legal Alcohol Limit: 0.08% BAC and 0.02% for underage
  • Jail Time: N/A
  • Fine: $500 maximum
  • License suspension: 1-year suspension
  • Period DUI stays on record: 10 years

Michigan

  • Legal Alcohol Limit: 0.08% BAC, 0.02% for underage 21, 0.04% for commercial drivers
  • Jail Time: N/A
  • Fine: $100 maximum
  • License suspension: 1-year suspension
  • Period DUI stays on record: 7 years

Minnesota

  • Legal Alcohol Limit: 0.08% BAC, 0.02% for underage 21, 0.04% for commercial drivers
  • Jail Time: N/A
  • Fine: $100 maximum
  • License suspension: 1-year suspension
  • Period DUI stays on record: 10 years

Mississippi

  • Legal Alcohol Limit: 0.08% BAC, 0.02% for underage 21, 0.04% for commercial drivers
  • Jail Time: N/A
  • Fine: $250
  • License suspension: 120-day suspension
  • Period DUI stays on record: 5 years

Missouri

  • Legal Alcohol Limit: 0.08% BAC, 0.02% for underage 21, 0.04% for commercial drivers
  • Jail Time: N/A
  • Fine: N/A
  • License suspension: 30-day suspension
  • Period DUI stays on record: 10 years

Montana

  • Legal Alcohol Limit: 0.08% BAC, 0.02% for underage 21, 0.04% for commercial drivers
  • Jail Time: 24 hours
  • Fine: $600
  • License suspension: 6-month suspension
  • Period DUI stays on record: 5 years

Nebraska

  • Legal Alcohol Limit: 0.08% BAC, 0.02% for underage 21, 0.04% for commercial drivers
  • Jail Time: 24 hours
  • Fine: $600
  • License suspension: 6-month suspension
  • Period DUI stays on record: 12 years

Nevada

  • Legal Alcohol Limit: 0.08% BAC 2 hours of operating, 0.02% for underage 21, 0.04% for commercial drivers
  • Jail Time: 2 days
  • Fine: $400
  • License suspension: 90-days suspension
  • Period DUI stays on record: 7 years

New Hampshire

  • Legal Alcohol Limit: 0.08% BAC, 0.02% for underage 21, 0.04% for commercial drivers
  • Jail Time: N/A
  • Fine: $500
  • License suspension: 9-month suspension
  • Period DUI stays on record: 10 years

New Jersey

  • Legal Alcohol Limit: 0.08% BAC, 0.01% for underage 21, 0.04% for commercial drivers
  • Jail Time: 12 hours
  • Fine: $250
  • License suspension: 3-month suspension
  • Period DUI stays on record: 10 years

New Mexico

  • Legal Alcohol Limit: 0.08% BAC, 0.02% for underage 21, 0.04% for commercial drivers
  • Jail Time: N/A
  • Fine: $300
  • License suspension: 6-month suspension
  • Period DUI stays on record: 55 years

New York

  • Legal Alcohol Limit: 0.08% BAC, 0.02% for underage 21, 0.04% for commercial drivers
  • Jail Time: N/A
  • Fine: $500
  • License suspension: 6-month revocation
  • Period DUI stays on record: 15 years

North Carolina

  • Legal Alcohol Limit: 0.08% BAC, 0.04% for commercial drivers, and zero tolerance for underage 21
  • Jail Time: 24 hours
  • Fine: N/A
  • License suspension: 30-day automatic suspension
  • Period DUI stays on record: 7 years

North Dakota

  • Legal Alcohol Limit: 0.08% BAC within 2 hours of driving, 0.04% for commercial drivers, and 0.02% for underage 21
  • Jail Time: N/A
  • Fine: $500
  • License suspension: 91-day suspension
  • Period DUI stays on record: 7 years

Ohio

  • Legal Alcohol Limit: 0.08% BAC, 0.02% for underage 21
  • Jail Time: 72 hours
  • Fine: $375
  • License suspension: 90-day administrative suspension
  • Period DUI stays on record: For life

Oklahoma

  • Legal Alcohol Limit: 0.08% BAC while driving and 0.02% for underage 21
  • Jail Time: 10 days
  • Fine: N/A
  • License suspension: 180-day administrative suspension
  • Period DUI stays on record: 10 years

Oregon

  • Legal Alcohol Limit: 0.08% BAC
  • Jail Time: 48 hours
  • Fine: $1000
  • License suspension: 90-day administrative suspension
  • Period DUI stays on record: For life

Pennsylvania

  • Legal Alcohol Limit: 0.08% BAC while driving, 0.04% for commercial drivers, and 0.02% for underage 21
  • Jail Time: N/A
  • Fine: $300
  • License suspension: Possible IID
  • Period DUI stays on record: 10 years

Rhode Island

  • Legal Alcohol Limit: 0.08% BAC
  • Jail Time: N/A
  • Fine: $100
  • License suspension: 30-day suspension
  • Period DUI stays on record: 5 years

South Carolina

  • Legal Alcohol Limit: 0.08% BAC
  • Jail Time: N/A
  • Fine: $400
  • License suspension: 6-month suspension
  • Period DUI stays on record: 10 years

Tennessee

  • Legal Alcohol Limit: 0.08% BAC while driving, 0.04% for commercial drivers, and 0.02% for underage 21
  • Jail Time: 48 hours
  • Fine: $350
  • License suspension: 1-year suspension
  • Period DUI stays on record: For life

South Dakota

  • Legal Alcohol Limit: 0.08% BAC, 0.04% for commercial drivers, and 0.02% for underage 21
  • Jail Time: N/A
  • Fine: N/A
  • License suspension: 30-day revocation
  • Period DUI stays on record: 10 years

Texas

  • Legal Alcohol Limit: 0.08% BAC, 0.04% for commercial drivers, and zero tolerance for underage 21
  • Jail Time: 72 hours
  • Fine: N/A
  • License suspension: 90-day suspension
  • Period DUI stays on record: For life

Utah

  • Legal Alcohol Limit: 0.08% BAC while driving, 0.04% for commercial drivers, and zero tolerance for underage 21
  • Jail Time: 48 hours
  • Fine: $700
  • License suspension: 120-day suspension
  • Period DUI stays on record: 10 years

Vermont

  • Legal Alcohol Limit: 0.08% BAC while driving, 0.04% for commercial drivers, and 0.02% for underage 21
  • Jail Time: N/A
  • Fine: N/A
  • License suspension: 90-day suspension
  • Period DUI stays on record: For life

Virginia

  • Legal Alcohol Limit: 0.08% BAC while driving, and 0.02% for underage 21
  • Jail Time: N/A
  • Fine: $250
  • License suspension: 7-day administrative suspension
  • Period DUI stays on record: 11 years

Washington

  • Legal Alcohol Limit: 0.08% BAC while driving, and 0.02% for underage 21, and .04% for commercial drivers
  • Jail Time: 24 hours
  • Fine: $350
  • License suspension: 90-day administrative suspension
  • Period DUI stays on record: 15 years

West Virginia

  • Legal Alcohol Limit: 0.08% BAC, and 0.02% for underage 21
  • Jail Time: 24 hours
  • Fine: $100
  • License suspension: 6-month revocation
  • Period DUI stays on record: 10 years

Wisconsin

  • Legal Alcohol Limit: 0.08% BAC while driving, 0.04% for commercial drivers, and zero tolerance for underage 21
  • Jail Time: N/A
  • Fine: $150
  • License suspension: 6-month suspension
  • Period DUI stays on record: 10 years

Wyoming

  • Legal Alcohol Limit: 0.08% BAC, 0.04% for commercial drivers, and 0.02% for underage 21
  • Jail Time: N/A
  • Fine: N/A
  • License suspension: 90-day suspension
  • Period DUI stays on record: 10 years
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John Miller
 

John Miller is a cars enthusiast who loves writing anything related to automobiles. He is a passionate blogger writing for innovatecar.com and other auto blogs