Florida DUI Laws

DUI Charge in Florida? Get top legal help to Fight and keep Your Freedom to Drive!

Florida DUI laws are complicated, and defending them successfully depends on the right experience.

As you can see below, the details of Florida’s drunk driving laws are difficult to summarize, and defending the charges requires a thorough understanding of the laws on the books, and how they are enforced in practice in Florida courts.

Call our experienced DUI defense attorneys to find out your options for fighting the charges, and we’ll tell you exactly what we can do to help.

Don’t give up hope. Drunk driving charges can be beaten! Every case is different, but even cases that sound bad can have good results in many circumstances.

Call us today at (877) 394-6959
and we’ll answer your questions, and lay out the facts so you can understand them, and make the best decision to protect your freedom and your future.

But don’t wait. There are strict deadlines in some legal challenges. You have only ten days from your arrest to challenge your driver’s license suspension in an administrative hearing. Call or email us today.

Florida DUI Laws Summary

The penalties for DUI are numerous and complex. The likely punishment if found guilty depends on if you have any prior DUI offenses has been convicted of any DUIs in the past, and if so, the number thereof. Penalties also depend on the driver’s blood alcohol content (BAC) and whether a minor was in the car.

In addition to jail time, if you are convicted of DUI in Florida, you will be placed on probation, assessed a fine, have your license suspended, amongst other penalties, as well as have a criminal record.

Under Florida Law, a DUI is defined as follows:

An individual is guilty of driving under the influence if he/she is driving or in actual physical control of a vehicle within this state, and:

  1. He/she is under the influence of alcoholic beverages, any chemical substance, or any substance, when affected to the extent that the person’s normal faculties are impaired; or
  2. He/she has a blood-alcohol level of 0.08 or more grams of alcohol per 100 milliliters of blood (over .08 BAC); or
  3. He/she has a breath-alcohol level of 0.08 or more grams of alcohol per 210 liters of breath (over .08 BrAC).

Florida DUI Penalties

The state of Florida treats those convicted of the crime of Driving Under the Influence differently; the penalties differ depending on the number of prior DUI convictions and/or the driver’s Blood Alcohol Content (BAC).

As of July 1, 2009Enhanced penalties apply if the driver’s BAC is .15% or over) (previous to that ,it was .20% BAC) or if a minor was in the vehicle at the time of the offense.

The crime of DUI becomes a 3rd Degree Felony in situations where the driver has previous DUI convictions within a certain period.

1st Offense (First) – Misdemeanor DUI Penalties

  • Jail for up to 180 days;
  • Probation for up to 1 year (however; the total period of probation and incarceration may not exceed 1 year);
  • A fine of $250 – $500;
  • License suspension for 6 months – 1 year;
  • 50 hours of community service (in the alternative may pay $10 per hour of community service);
  • DUI School, Level 1;
  • One of Defendant’s cars will be impounded for 10 days.

1st Offense Enhanced DUI (BAC Over .15%)– Misdemeanor DUI Penalties

The penalties will be the same as if there was no enhancement, with the exception of those listed below

  • Jail for up to 270 days;
  • A fine of $500 – $1000;
  • An Interlock Ignition Device must be installed in Defendant’s car, and remain for up to 6 months.

* If there is an accident, the defendant may be sentenced to up to 364 days in jail.

Second Offense Florida DUI Laws & Penalties

Second (2nd) Offense (1st more than 5 years earlier) Florida DUI Penalties – Misdemeanor

  • Jail for up to 270 days;
  • Probation for up to 1 year;
  • A fine of $500 – $1000;
  • License suspension for 6 months – 1 year;
  • DUI School, Level 2;
  • All of the Defendant’s cars will be impounded for 10 days;
  • An Interlock Ignition Device must be installed in Defendant’s car, and remain for 1 year.

Second (2nd) Offense Enhanced (the 1st offense having occurred more than 5 years prior) Florida DUI Penalties – Misdemeanor

The penalties will be the same as if there was no enhancement (above), with the exception of those listed below

  • Jail for up to 364 days;
  • A fine of $1000 – $2000;
  • The Interlock Ignition Device must be installed in Defendant’s car, and remain for 2 years.

* If there is an accident, the defendant may be sentenced to up to 364 days in jail.

Second (2nd) Offense (the 1st offense having occurred within the past 5 years) Florida DUI Penalties – Misdemeanor

  • Mandatory 10 days in jail, but may be up to 270 days;
  • Probation for up to 1 year;
  • A fine of $500 – $1000;
  • License suspension for 5 years;
    – DUI School, Level 2;
  • All of the Defendant’s cars will be impounded for 30 days;
  • The Interlock Ignition Device will be installed in Defendant’s car, and remain for 1 year.

Second (2nd) Offense Enhanced (the 1st offense having occurredwithin the past 5 years) Florida DUI Penalties – Misdemeanor

The penalties will be the same as if there was no enhancement as above, with the exception of those listed below

  • Mandatory 10 days in jail, but it may be up to 364 days;
  • A fine of $1000 – $2000;
  • The Interlock Ignition Device will be installed in Defendant’s car, and remain for 2 years.

* If there is an accident, the defendant may be sentenced to up to 364 days in jail.

 

Third Offense Florida DUI Laws & Penalties

Third (3rd) Offense Florida DUI Penalties (the 2nd offense having occurred more than 10 years prior) – Misdemeanor

  • Jail for up to 364 days;
  • Probation for up to 1 year;
  • A fine of $1000 – $2500;
  • License suspension for 6 months – 1 year;
    – DUI School, Level 2;
  • All of the Defendant’s cars will be impounded for 10 days;
  • The Interlock Ignition Device will be installed in Defendant’s car, and remain for 2 years.

Third (3rd) Offense Enhanced Florida DUI Penalties (the 2nd offense having occurred more than 10 years prior) – Misdemeanor

The penalties will be the same as if there was no enhancement, with the exception of that listed below

  • A fine of $2000 – $5000

Third (3rd) Offense Florida DUI Penalties (the 2nd offense having occurred within the past 10 years) – 3rd Degree Felony

  • Jail from 30 days to 5 years;
  • Probation for up to 5 years; A fine of $1000 – $5000;
  • License suspension for 10 years;
  • DUI School, Level 2;
  • All of Defendant’s cars will be impounded for 90 days;
  • The Interlock Ignition Device will be installed in Defendant’s car; and remain for 2 years.

* There is no difference in sentence if there was an accident

Fourth (4th) Offense Florida DUI Penalties (the 3rd offense having occurred more than 10 years prior) – 3rd Degree Felony

All 4th Offense DUIs should be reviewed to determine if the offense is coupled as a 2nd DUI within 5 years, and/or a 3rd DUI within 10 years.

  • Jail up to 5 years;
  • Probation for up to 5 years;
  • A fine of $1000 – $5000;
  • Permanent loss of license;
  • All of Defendant’s cars will be impounded for 10 days;
  • No Interlock Ignition Device as the Defendant’s license will be permanently suspended.

Fourth (4th) Offense Florida DUI Penalties (the 3rd offense having occurred within the last 10 years) – 3rd degree Felony

The penalties will be the same as if the 3rd offense had occurred more than 10 years prior, with the exception of that listed below

  • Jail from 30 days up to 5 years;
  • All of the Defendant’s car will be impounded for 90 days.

If a driver refused to take a breath, blood or urine test after being arrested for DUI in Florida, or if the results of the breath test were .08% blood-alcohol or above, the individual only has ten days to request a hearing in order to challenge the administrative suspension of his/her driver’s license.

 

References: Florida DUI Statue §316.193

Further Reading: Florida DUI and License Suspension Laws

Get a Free Legal Consultation on Your Florida DUI Charges

Don’t let your Florida DUI charge ruin your life! Let us help you look for every opportunity to beat or reduce the charges.

Call our Florida DUI defense attorneys to discuss you case, and we’ll talk about your range of options, from working out a deal to fighting the case at trial, and how we can help.

So call (877) 394-6959
now to set up a consultation with one of our experienced Florida criminal defense lawyers, who know how to fight and win Florida DUI DWI charges. Call now. (877) 394-6959
.

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