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DUI Penalties

What is the total cost to me for a DUI charge?

If you or someone you love has been arrested for drunk driving, also known as driving under the influence (DUI), then hiring an attorney may help minimize the costs and, if applicable, the jail time you or your loved one face for driving under the influence (DUI). The attorneys at Law Offices of John Schmidt & Associates PLLC help clients get through this difficult time. The penalties for drunk driving (DUI) are listed below, and the costs are higher than you might think.

MSN published an article on the costs of a DUI, or drinking and driving, offense entitled “DUI: The $10,000 Ride Home”. It outlines the costs from attorney fees to towing costs. You can find the article at http://budurl.com/DUICosts. It should help answer the question “Do I need a DUI defense lawyer?” A DUI defense lawyer can help you understand your options, help you avoid making more costly mistakes, and/or mount a defense against the charges.

It is illegal to drive with a blood or breath alcohol content (BAC) of 0.08 or higher, but operators can be convicted at levels lower than .08 based on other evidence which indicates impairment. Drivers under the age of 21 are deemed to be driving under the influence at .02 breath or blood alcohol level.

You must provide your name, drivers license, and registration if an officer stops you. You can refuse to take field sobriety tests but do so respectfully and politely. If you are taken into custody, then the police will ask you to take breath, blood or urine tests. Kentucky drivers implicitly consent to take breath, blood or urine tests, but you may refuse these tests as well.

The Penalties for DUI

First Offense Within a Five Year Period

  • $200 – 500 Fine
  • 2 to 30 Days in Jail
  • 90 Day Alcohol or Substance Abuse Program (State Approved Programs)
  • 30 to 120 Day License Suspension
  • Possible 48 Hours – 30 Days Community Labor Jefferson County Diversion Program

* If aggravating circumstances present – 4 days imprisonment

Second Offense Within a Five Year Period

  • $350-500 Fine
  • 10 Days-6 Months Community Labor
  • 7 Days – 6 Months in Jail
  • 1 Yr Alcohol or Substance Abuse Treatment (State Approved Programs)
  • 12 to 18 Month License Suspension

* If aggravating circumstances present – 14 days imprisonment

Third Offense Within a Five Year Period

  • $500 – 1,000 Fine/30 Days-12 Months Jail
  • 10 Day-12 Months Community Labor
  • 1 Year of Alcohol or Substance Abuse Treatment (State Approved Programs)
  • 24 to 36 Month License Suspension

* If aggravating circumstances present – 60 days imprisonment

Fourth Offense Within a Five Year Period

  • Class D Felony
  • Minimum Term 120 Days Imprisonment Without Probation
  • 60 Month License Suspension
  • 1 Year Alcohol or Substance Abuse Treatment (State Approved Programs)

* If aggravating circumstances present – 240 days imprisonment

Aggravating Circumstances

Aggravating circumstances result in higher minimum jail time:

  • Drives 30+ mph over the speed limit
  • Drives the wrong way on a limited access highway
  • Causes accident resulting in death or serious physical injury
  • Blood or Breath Alcohol Content (BAC) of .15 or more within 2 hours after operating
  • Refusal to submit to testing
  • Transporting passengers under 12 years of age