Penalties for A DUI conviction will vary based on several circumstances discussed below. As you read and consider the possible consequences of a conviction, you will begin to understand the necessity of having competent legal counsel to help you navigate the process.
First Offense DUI:
A first DUI arrest is prosecuted as a misdemeanor. If convicted, you face the possibility of incarcerated for up to a year. Whether that jail sentence will be active is within the discretion of the court. You also face a fine of not less than $600 and nor more than $2,100, plus court costs. However, if your blood alcohol content (BAC) was .15 or higher the sentencing court is required to impose double minimum punishment. You will also be ordered to attend a court approved substance abuse program. If your BAC was less than .15 and you are convicted, your driver’slicense will be suspended for 90 days by ALEA unless you“elect” to install an ignition interlock device and maintain the interlock device for a period of ninety (90) days. If your BAC was .15 or greater or you refused the breath testing, you must install an interlock device. Once you show proof of installation of an approved interlock device, the remainder of the 90-daysuspension is stayed. Any remaining period not served is commuted after successful completion of a one-year interlock period.
Second Offense DUI:
A second DUI arrest within ten years of the first conviction will also be prosecuted as a misdemeanor offense. If convicted, you are required to serve an active jail term of not less than five days, and the court has the authority to impose a term of up to one year in jail. You will be fined not less than $1,100 and up to $5,100, plus court costs, and your license will be revoked for one year. if your blood alcohol content (BAC) was .15 or higher the sentencing court is required to impose double minimum punishment. If your convicted for a second time and the second conviction meets the .15 standard, the court will impose ten days of mandatory jail time and a double fine of not less than $2,200. You will be required to install ignition interlock for two-year years but must first serve 45 days of driver license removal. In addition, you will be required to complete the Level II or Level III treatment program.
Third Offense DUI:
A third DUI arrest within the past ten years is also a misdemeanor. If you are convicted, you will serve no less than 60 days in jail and up to 1 year. The 60-day active sentence is mandatory. The double minimum punishment statute applies to third offense DUI and the court will be required to impose double punishment if the conviction was entered with a .15% test result. Upon conviction of third offense DUI, you face a fine of not less than $2,100 and up to $10,100, plus court costs, and must complete the Level III substance abuse treatment program. In addition, the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency will revoke your driver’s license for a period of three years. The mandatory removal of driver license is reduced to 60 days of license revocation, if an approved interlock device is installed. Any remaining revocation order not served will be commuted upon successful completion of a three-year interlock period.
Fourth Offense DUI:
A fourth DUI arrest within ten years will be prosecuted as a Class C felony. If you are convicted of felony DUI, you will be sentenced to not less than one year and one day and not more than 10 years imprisonment. If the sentence imposed is more than three years, you must be sent to the state penitentiary to serve the sentence. You also face a fine of not less than $4,100 and up to $10,100 and a five-year driver license revocation. Youwill also be required to attend a court approved substance abuse program. You must also maintain an interlock system on your vehicle for four year, but only after one year of license revocation.
Given the severity of the consequences of a DUI conviction it is important to seek legal counsel immediately. A DUI conviction can have serious immediate and long-term consequences. While Alabama dictates penalties for a conviction, there are options that may be available to you which will help you reduce or avoid those penalties. You will want to work with an experienced attorney who can give you the best chance at obtaining the most favorable outcome to your case. The lawyers at BHM Law Group will work to help you resolve your case with the fewest possible penalties.