A DUI conviction is costly. Not only can it cost you your driver’s license, but you can face serious consequences like mandatory jail sentences, fines, probation and other costs, and attorney’s fees. If you drive for a living (if you are a commercial driver, for instance), your very livelihood can be at risk. While part of the purpose of the DUI penalties is to deter the intoxicated driver from driving drunk again in the future, some of the penalties go far beyond this purpose and impair an intoxicated driver’s ability to provide for him- or herself and his or her family.

What Penalties Can I Expect After a DUI-OVI Conviction?

The precise penalties you can face for a charge of operating a vehicle under the influence will depend on the number of times you have been convicted of the offense in the past as well as what concentration of alcohol is found in your system:

  • Fines: Fines can range from a minimum of $375.00 for a first OVI conviction up to a maximum of $10,500.00 for a fourth or subsequent OVI conviction.
  • Jail: Upon conviction for a first OVI with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of less than 0.17, the court must sentence the driver to a minimum of 3 days in jail or a driver’s intervention program (DIP) lasting at least 72-consecutive hours. For a fourth or subsequent OVI conviction, if the driver’s BAC is found to be 0.17 or greater, the driver can be sentenced to 120 consecutive days in prison followed by an additional prison sentence of six months up to 30 months.
  • License Suspension: A license suspension lasting at least six months can be imposed for a first-time OVI offender. For a fourth or subsequent offender, the license suspension can last a minimum of three years up to a maximum lifetime suspension. Although limited driving privileges can be granted, the time that must pass before such privileges are granted increases depending on the driver’s number of prior convictions.

Are There Other Consequences of a DUI-OVI Conviction?

In addition to fines, jail or prison sentences, and mandatory license suspension periods, there are other consequences that can be imposed in a DUI-OVI case. These include:

  • Alcohol or drug treatment at the driver’s expense;
  • Placement on a community control program;
  • Lifetime suspension of a commercial driver’s license (even if the driver is stopped in a personal vehicle);
  • Mandatory installation of an ignition interlock;
  • Mandatory placement of restricted plates on a vehicle; and
  • Forfeiture of vehicles if registered to the driver.

You Need Suhre & Associates, LLC

With all the negative consequences and penalties that follow even a first time DUI-OVI conviction, you need the aggressive and experienced legal counsel of Suhre & Associates, LLC on your side. Having an experienced Columbus DUI-OVI attorney in your corner will help minimize the consequences and can even increase your chances of obtaining a “not guilty” verdict. If you have been charged with a DUI-OVI offense in Columbus, contact us at (614) 827-2000.