What is the Punishment for Your First DUI?
You know drinking and driving is a bad move. Unfortunately, you made a mistake—and now you’re dealing with the consequences. What can you expect after your first DUI? What is the punishment for your first DUI? What do those consequences really look like? By knowing what to expect, you can better prepare yourself for what’s ahead.
In most states, a first DUI offense is considered a misdemeanor, even if there were no other aggravating factors involved in the incident. An accident, especially one which led to significant injury or loss of life to another person, can result in additional criminal charges and can significantly increase the penalties* associated with your DUI. Additional criminal charges may be lodged against you and your penalties may also increase if you had an open container of alcohol in the car or if you were traveling with a child at the time of your DUI offense. In general, however, you can expect:
Many DUIs come along with fines, often high ones. Fines will depend on and be set by your state law and sometimes within the discretion of the sentencing judge presiding over your criminal case; however, they may be as high as $500 or more for your first offense.
Generally, your driver’s license may be suspended for a period of time following the disposition of your DUI case. First offenses may begin at 90 days of license suspension, or you may receive license suspension of six months or more, depending on the circumstances and the laws of the state in which the offense occurred. Even with a driver’s license suspension, in some cases, you may be able to show a hardship exception to be approved to allow you to drive to and from work during this suspension period, especially if you have an ignition interlock device (IID) installed on your vehicle.
Jail time could result from even your first DUI charge. In some states, you may end up in jail for up to six months even for a first offense, depending on what happened during your DUI offense.
Probation may significantly limit your movements and activities during the period immediately following your DUI. You may have to check in with a probation officer, avoid places where alcohol is served, or avoid individuals known to engage in illegal activities during this time.
Other Effects of a DUI
After a DUI, your car insurance rate may increase substantially—or you may have trouble getting or maintaining car insurance. Since a conviction for DUI will go on your criminal record, you may have difficulty securing employment in certain areas where driving for an employer is job related. You may also be denied payment for your damage repair expenses by your car insurance company (depending on your policy’s coverage exclusions) after a DUI related accident.
Dealing with the aftermath of a DUI is difficult, but you don’t have to do it alone. Our ignition interlock devices are reliable, discreet and easy to use allowing you to more effectively deal with the consequences of your first DUI. Contact us today to learn more.