In the State of Florida, there are serious consequences if you are charged with and convicted of driving under the influence (DUI). Following is a summary of some of the most important DUI laws in Florida for a first conviction.
DUI Definition In Florida
Florida DUI laws define someone with a blood alcohol level of .08 or higher as being impaired of their normal faculties. A person can be under the influence because they drank alcoholic beverages or ingested chemical or controlled substances.
Consequences of a First Time DUI Conviction
Depending upon the particular circumstances of a particular case, the consequences for someone convicted of such an offense can range from a fine to imprisonment.
Factors Affecting the Severity of the Punishment
- Proper Paperwork: Valid license, registration and insurance
- Personal Injury/Property Damage: Did the DUI result in an accident?
- Blood alcohol level:How much over the legal limit?
Some or All of the Following Consequences May Occur
- Fines for a first conviction with a Blood Alcohol Level (BAL) of less than .15 is between $500 to ,000. For a BAL of .15 or higher, the fine is ,000-$2,000.
- Community Service is mandatory. You will be required to serve 50 hours or if you do not comply, will be fined an additional 0/Hour for every hour of mandatory community service you do not complete.
- Probation plus any incarceration time may not exceed a total of 1 year.
- Imprisonment based on a conviction with a BAL of less than .15 may be for up to 6 months. If the BAL was .15 or above, prison can be for up to 9 months. The court has the discretion to allow a person to serve their prison time in a residential alcohol or drug abuse treatment program.
- Impounding of Vehicle can be for up to 10 days. An exception might be made if the family has no other transportation and impounding would be seen as a severe hardship.
- Revocation of Driver’s License for not less than 180 days nor more than 1 year. If also convicted of Manslaughter, first time offenders will have their license revoked for a minimum of 5 years before they can apply for reinstatement.
- A DUI Misdemeanor Conviction Under DUI laws in Florida, if you were involved in an accident that caused property damage or bodily injury, you will be guilty of a First Degree Misdemeanor and subject to a fine of up to ,000 and up to 1 year imprisonment.
- DUI/Manslaughter and Vehicular Homicide is a Second Degree Felony and can be subject to a 0,000 fine and up to 15 years imprisonment. If you leave the scene of the accident, the charge becomes a First Degree Felony and while the maximum fine remains at 0,000, you may be imprisoned for up to 30 years.