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What are the penalties for first, second and third DUI charge?

Indiana drivers who are placed under arrest on a DUI charge will face various penalties depending on the circumstances. A person who is arrested for DUI on a second or third offense will face worsened charges. Knowing the penalties that accompany each charge is important when planning a defense. The penalties can include fines, a jail sentence, court fees, a driver's license suspension, and more.

For a first offense, a conviction can result in one year in jail. There will be a fine of up to $5,000. Court costs and fees can cost more than $300. The driver's license will be suspended for as long as two years. It is also possible that the driver will be put on probation and need to take part in a substance abuse education course. After a probationary period of 180 days when the person is only allowed to drive for his or her employment, there can be a driver's license suspension for 30 days. There could also be a victim impact panel, the need to take urine tests for drugs and alcohol, and other penalties with probation.

With a second offense, the driver will face a jail sentence of at least five days and up to three years. There might also be community service. A fine will be assessed for up to $10,000. The driver's license will be suspended for a minimum of 180 days and up to two years. There are other terms of probation as in the first offense. With a third offense, there will be a jail term of a minimum of 10 days and up to three years along with the possibility of community service. There will be a fine of up to $10,000. The driver's license will be suspended for a minimum of one year and as much as 10 years. There will be a designation of a habitual traffic violator. With a sentence as a habitual substance offender, the driver might be jailed for an extra year and up to eight years. There can be other terms of probation.

Drivers who are arrested for DUI should know what they are dealing with if they are convicted whether it is a first offense, second offense or third offense. Having a strong defense is vital to combat the charges. There are multiple ways to defend these allegations. Perhaps there was something amiss with the test to determine the BAC level. The officer might not have made the stop for valid reasons. Regardless of the situation, it is imperative to have assistance from an attorney who is experienced in drunk driving defense.

Source:, "If You Are Convicted of Operating a Motor Vehicle While Intoxicated," accessed on Aug. 7, 2017

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