DUI Types in Florida
Florida has many categories of DUI. The actual charge brought against you depends on different factors. These factors include:
- How many prior Dui offenses you have
- What your breath or blood alcohol level was
- The length of time that has elapsed between your offenses
- Whether or not person was injured or killed
- Whether or not there was property damage
Once these factors are considered, the State will bring the appropriate charge. The different charges that can be brought fall into these basic categories:
- First Time DUI
- A first time DUI means just that. You have no prior DUI offenses and there are no aggravating circumstances such as damage to property, injury to another or death. It also means your breath or blood alcohol level was below a .15.
- Multiple DUI
- If you are charged with a multiple DUI offense, it means you have a prior DUI conviction. Depending on how many priors you have the charge can be a felony.
- Felony DUI
- Felony DUI charges can be brought for several reasons.
- The first is that you have three DUI charges within a 10 year period.
- You can also be charged with felony DUI if this offense is your 4th DUI charge no matter how much time has elapsed between offenses.
- If there is injury or death as a result of your DUI then it can be charged as a felony.
- DUI With Serious Bodily Injury
- This is a felony charge. The injury must be to another person and must involve permanent disfigurement or be a condition that creates a substantial risk of death, serious personal disfigurement, or protracted loss or impairment of the function of any bodily member or organ.
- Aggravated DUI
- Aggravated DUI are DUI charges where there is a breath or blood alcohol level of a .15 or higher or where children are in the car.
- Drug DUI/Driving Under the Influence of Drugs
- These are DUI cases where it is alleged that you were not impaired by alcohol, but rather illegal or prescribed medication.
- DUI with Property Damage
- This is a DUI charge where you damage someone else’s property while you were impaired. It is most often charged in cases where there is an auto accident.
- DUI Manslaughter
- This charge is a felony. It is filed when someone dies as a result of impaired driving.
- Commercial Vehicle DUI/CDL DUI
- If you are a CDL driver, these laws apply to you.
- As a CDL driver you are held to a higher standard than that of a regularly licensed driver.
- DUI Under the age of 21/Zero Tolerance
- If you are underage, and you are found to be drinking any amount of alcohol, you can face a DUI charge.
- BUI/Boating under the Influence
- These are the laws that apply to drinking and boating.
- They are similar to DUI laws in that the “legal limit” is .08
These are the different types of DUI charges you can receive in Florida. The sentence you face depends on which category you fall into. The descriptions below are meant to give a general overview of each specific category.
FIRST TIME DUI
A first time DUI is charged where there are no prior DUI convictions ever. It is the simplest form of DUI charge. A first time DUI charge can be overwhelming. There are several requirements that are mandatory by law. These must be imposed even if you have never been in trouble with the law before.
What are the possible penalties for a first time DUI offense?
- A first time DUI carries a maximum sentence of six months in the county jail. If your blow was a 0.15 or higher it is increased to nine months in the county jail.
- The minimum fine for a first time DUI is $500. If the blow was 0.15 or higher it is increased to $1000.
- The judge does have discretion in some cases to allow you to work off the fine amounts in community service hours. The rate of exchange is $10 off of the fine amount for every hour of community service performed above the statutory requirements.
- In addition to the fines, license suspension and any jail time, you must be sentenced to 12 months of reporting probation. There is a monthly fee for every month you report.
- Community Service
- During the 12 months you are on probation you must pay court costs and perform a minimum of 50 hours of community service.
- Dui School and Treatment
- It will also be mandatory for you to attend DUI School. As part of the DUI School, you will be ordered to obtain a substance abuse evaluation. If it is determined that you have a problem with drinking or drugs, you will be ordered to attend counseling sessions at your own expense.
- The probation officer will have to impound your vehicle for a period of ten days. If you do not own a vehicle at the time of sentencing, the judge will order the impound for any car you obtain during the length of your probation period.
- Ignition Interlock
- If you blow over a .15 you will be required to place an ignition interlock in any car you drive for a period of six months – even if it is your first offense. An ignition interlock is a device that attaches to your vehicle’s starter system. You must blow into the system to ensure there is no alcohol on your breath in order to start the car. There is an installation fee as well as a monthly fee for this device.
- License Suspension
- If this is your first DUI and your blow is under a .15, your license will be suspended for six months. If your blow is over a .15 it will be suspended for a period of one year.
If you have prior convictions for a DUI charge, the State will charge you as a multiple offender. Multiple offense Dui charges carry higher fine amounts, mandatory jail sentences and longer license suspension periods. Florida counts all prior DUI charges no matter how long ago they occurred.
Second Time Categories
There are two different categories for a 2nd DUI arrest. They are a “2nd DUI” and a “2nd within 5.”
If it has been more than five years since your last DUI arrest, and it is the second time ever being arrested in any state for DUI, then your charge will be a 2nd DUI.
- The maximum jail sentence is nine months.
- If it is your second offense and the blow is over a 0.15 it is one year.
- The minimum fine for a second DUI is $1000.
- If the blow was over a 0.15 the minimum fine is increased to $2000.
- Ignition Interlock
- An ignition interlock is required for a second DUI.
- If it is a second outside of five then the ignition interlock period is a minimum of one year
- License Suspension and Vehicle Impound
- For a second DUI outside of five, your license is suspended for a minimum of six months. There is also a 30 day impoundment of your vehicle.
“2nd within 5”
If your second arrest for DUI occurs within 5 years of the first, it is considered a “2nd within 5.” The penalties for a 2nd within 5 are much harsher than those of a regular DUI.
- If it is a second within five, there is a minimum mandatory sentence of 10 days in the county jail. This is mandatory!! That means the judge has no discretion. You MUST serve at least 10 days in jail.
- The maximum sentence depends on the blow. For a blow under.15 or less, the maximum sentence is nine months. For a blow of .15 or above the maximum sentence is one year.
- If the offense is a second within five then the minimum fine is $2000 regardless of the blow.
- Ignition Interlock
- If it is a 2nd within 5, then the ignition interlock will be ordered for at least two years.
- License Suspension and Vehicle Impound
- A 2nd within 5 has a MANDATORY license suspension of FIVE YEARS! Your vehicle will be impounded for a period of 90 days.
Additional Sanctions for Both Charges
For either DUI charge, you will be placed on 12 months of probation, Just like for your first DUI. You also have to attend and complete DUI School and any recommended treatment. As part of the DUI school you will be ordered to undergo a substance abuse evaluation. You will also have to undergo any recommended treatment ordered through the evaluation.
Third Time Categories
A third time DUI can be very serious. Depending on the amount of time that has elapsed from your last arrest, it can be charged as a felony. If you are charged with a felony you may face up to five years in prison for the offense.
How do they determine if a 3rd DUI is a felony or misdemeanor?
If your last DUI arrest and conviction was more than ten years before the current charge, it is a first degree misdemeanor. If your current DUI arrest was less than ten years from your second DUI arrest then it can be charged as a felony!!! ALL THE CONVICTIONS DO NOT HAVE TO BE IN A TEN YEAR PERIOD!!
If all charges don’t have to be in the past 10 years, how is it calculated?
- Let’s say that your first DUI conviction was in 1989, and your second DUI conviction was in 1999. If you are arrested today your charge is a misdemeanor. More than ten years has elapsed since your second conviction and this arrest. This DUI charge is known as a “3rd outside of 10.”
- Now let’s say that your first DUI conviction was in 1989, and your second conviction was in 2012. If you are arrested today for a third DUI, it will be a felony. This is because there is less than ten years between your last conviction in 2012 and today. Even though the first one was over 10 years ago, it is the date of the last conviction that sets the 10 year limit for the felony charge. This DUI charge is known as a “3rd within 10.”
- If you have a 3rd DUI outside of 10 years, you can face up to one year in jail whether you blew over a 0.15 or not.
- If your current DUI arrest is a “3rd within 10” is punishable by up to five years in the Department of Corrections!! This means the maximum sentence involves five years in prison. Also, there is a MANDATORY 30 day sentence that must be imposed. Mandatory means that 30 days is the least amount of jail that you can receive for the charge.
- For a third DUI, there is a minimum $2000 fine, (if your blow was over a 0.15 the minimum fine is $4000). The maximum fine is $5000!!! This fine is in addition to any court costs or fees that the judge may impose.
- License Suspension
- If you are convicted of a “3rd outside of 10” there is a one year license suspension of your license.
- If you are convicted of a “3rd within 10” your license will be suspended for ten years!
- Vehicle Impound
- Whether your third DUI is a felony or misdemeanor, upon conviction the court will order a 90 day vehicle impoundment. This means you will have to pay for your car to be impounded, or for a boot to be placed on your vehicle for three months!!
- The impound can NOT occur while you are in jail! You have to be out for the impound to take effect.
- Ignition Interlock
- An ignition interlock is a device that you blow into to start a car. If there is alcohol on your breath the car won’t start.
- There is a minimum mandatory 2 year ignition interlock requirement for any vehicle you own or drive. The judge can order longer than the two year period if they feel it is necessary.
- Probation and DUI School
- For a “3rd within 10”You will be placed on one year of misdemeanor probation.
- If your case is charged as a felony you will be supervised by the probation department of the Florida Department of Corrections.
- You will also have to attend the mandatory DUI School and substance abuse evaluation. This includes attending and completing any substance abuse counseling that is ordered through DUI School.
- For both misdemeanors and felonies you will have to report at least once a month to your probation officer so that they can monitor your progress and you will be ordered to pay any fees associated with your supervision.
A DUI is considered “aggravated” if you have a blood or breath alcohol level that registers at .15 or above. In Florida, the higher level can add additional conditions to a DUI charge.
Does having a high alcohol content increase the amount of jail I can receive?
Yes. In general the maximum jail time that can be imposed increases by three months if the alcohol level was measured at a .15 or above. If you have a third offense that is not a felony you can’t receive more than one year. If it is a felony, the judge will factor that in when considering sentence.
Does having a high alcohol content increase the fines?
If you have an alcohol level of .15 or above, the judge will double the fine for your DUI. This means in some cases you may have to pay as much as $4000 in a misdemeanor DUI case.
Will I suffer any other consequences?
In cases where you have an alcohol content of .15 or higher, an ignition interlock will be required. This is true even if it is a first time offense. If you have a second or subsequent offense the time required for an ignition interlock is doubled.
In these cases the DUI School will also mandate treatment. If you do not have a high alcohol content, the DUI evaluator may decide treatment is not necessary. This will not be the case if the alcohol content was .15 or higher. This means more money spent on treatment.
Are there other factors that can be considered aggravating in addition to a high alcohol level?
Having a child in the car under the age of 18 is also considered an aggravating factor in a DUI case. It can result in increased fines and penalties even if it is a first time offense.
What are the additional penalties for having a child in the car?
If you have a child in the car, the fine amount can double. It will also be possible to receive up to one year in jail for a first offense.
In extreme circumstances, you can also be charged with child neglect in addition to the DUI charge. This can lead to felony charges and investigation by the Department of Children and Families.
These are the most common aggravating factors found in DUI cases. Some judges consider the fact that there was an accident aggravating. Some consider the time of day in determining aggravating factors. These types of personal bias from the judges will not result in a more severe charge, but may play an important part in the judge’s ultimate sentence.
FELONY DUI CATEGORIES
As discussed above, a third time DUI can be charged as a felony. But there are other categories of felony DUI as well. These include 4th or subsequent offenses, DUI With Serious Bodily Injury and DUI Manslaughter.
Fourth or Subsequent DUI
If you have been arrested for your fourth (or more) DUI, it is a felony charge regardless of how much time has elapsed between your last conviction and your present arrest. A fourth (or more) DUI is always a felony.!!
- A fourth (or more) DUI carries a maximum sentence of five years. If you are sentenced to more than one year in jail, you will be sent to prison. A felony DUI is punishable by up to five years in the Department of Corrections!! This means you can be sentenced and housed in a prison facility anywhere in the State of Florida.
- License Suspension
- If you are convicted of a 4th DUI, your license will be permanently revoked!! This means you will never be able to have driving privileges in the State of Florida ever again. At this time there is non provision for a hardship license for anyone convicted of four or more DUIs.
- There is a minimum mandatory fine of $2000. This can be increased up to $5000 if the judge so chooses.
- DUI School and Treatment
- If you are convicted of a fourth DUI, you will have to attend and complete DUI School and any recommended treatment. Whether or not you are placed on probation, and for how long, depends on the length of your jail sentence.
DUI With Serious Bodily Injury
DUI with serious bodily injury is a very serious charge. Even if it is your first DUI, and you have no prior history, if you are found to be driving under the influence and you cause serious bodily injury to another as a result, you can be charged with a third degree felony!! This means you can go to prison for a first time offense!
What does “serious bodily injury” mean?
Under the Florida Statutes, the term “serious bodily injury” means:
“. . . an injury to any person, including the driver, which consists of a physical condition that creates a substantial risk of death, serious personal disfigurement, or protracted loss or impairment of the function of any bodily member or organ.”
This means you can be charged with this offense even if you only hurt yourself!! Maybe not convicted, but definitely charged.
- DUI With Serious Bodily Injury is a third degree felony. It is punishable by up to five years in the Department of Corrections. This means prison.
- The fine amount for this charge is $5000.
- DUI School
- The standard DUI conditions for DUI School and substance abuse counseling apply to this charge.
- Probation for a charge of DUI With Serious Bodily Injury is a felony. This means your probation will be supervised by the Department of Corrections. The period of supervision can be up to five years.
- If you are convicted of DUI with Serious Bodily Injury, there is a 3 year driver’s license revocation. However, there are provisions for a hardship license once you complete DUI School and, in some cases, a Driver Improvement Course.
Of the types of felony DUI, manslaughter is the most severe. Manslaughter is the involuntary taking of another life. In addition to the legal consequences manslaughter charges can take an emotional toll on the offender. It is a charge that will affect the rest of your life.
What type of Felony is Manslaughter and how can I receive this charge?
Manslaughter is a term regularly used when a person accidentally kills someone else. If you are charged with DUI Manslaughter, it means that you drove while under the influence of drugs or alcohol, and as a result you killed another person or an unborn child.
If the State can prove that while driving under the influence you caused a crash that caused a death, then your DUI Manslaughter charge will be a second degree felony.
If the State can prove that while driving under the influence you caused a crash the caused a death and:
- you failed to stop and give information or
- you failed to stop and help the person you injured
then you can be charged with a first degree felony. A first degree felony is punishable by up to life in prison.
- DUI Manslaughter is a second degree felony, punishable by up to 15 years in the Department of Corrections!
- If you are convicted of DUI Manslaughter and it is found that you failed to stop and give information or you failed to stop and help, then the charge is a first degree felony punishable by 30 years!!! There is also a four year minimum mandatory sentence that you must receive.
- DUI School
- In addition to jail penalties, you may also be placed on probation. You will have to complete DUI School and any substance abuse treatment.
- DUI Manslaughter carries a $10,000 fine
- License Suspension
- Your license can be permanently revoked if you are convicted or enter a plea of guilty or no contest to the Court. You can be eligible for a BPO in some cases, but not all. There is a set amount of time that must be served without a license before you can apply for a BPO.
- Ignition Interlock
- You will also have to place an ignition interlock on your vehicle for at least two years if you qualify for a hardship license.
- Probation for a DUI Manslaughter charge is supervised by the Department of Corrections. The probation period can last up to 15 years.
These types of felony Dui charges are extremely serious. It is very, very important that you have quality representation. The stakes are just too high to trust your case to an attorney without Dui experience. If you have one of these charges you should seek help immediately!!!
Drug DUI/Driving Under the Influence of Drugs
In Florida, there is a large portion of the population medicated with prescription drugs. These can be legitimately prescribed or taken through “pain management” fronts. Even if you are taking a prescription as prescribed you can be charged with a drug DUI. A drug DUI accuses you of being impaired by a substance other than alcohol.
Most drug DUIs also involve illegal drugs such as marijuana or cocaine. It is also possible for the State to proceed alleging that you are under the influence of both alcohol and drug interaction. How you will be charged depends on your admissions and the toxicology report.
Don’t you have to be drinking to get a DUI?
When you think of DUI most people think of being drunk. But you can be convicted of DUI without ever taking a drink!! The law provides that you can also be under the influence of a controlled substance. A controlled substance is any substance listed in Chapter 843 of the Florida statutes. If the State feels you are under the influence of one of these substances it is known as a “Drug DUI.”
How will they know if I have drugs in my system?
If a police officer feels you are under the influence of a controlled substance, he or she can request that you take a urine test as part of the implied consent statute. If you fail to do so, you can be charged with a refusal, just as if you refused to blow into the machine.
What types of drugs are listed in Chapter 843?
There are several drugs listed in Chapter 843. The most common include:
- Xanax and
- Many forms of “Spice” and “K2” are also on this list
There are several more drugs on the list. Most of them are types of painkillers, muscle relaxers, and depression or anxiety medications. Of course, the list also includes illegal drugs. A good rule of thumb is that if you can’t buy it over the counter, it will be on the list.
What if I have a prescription for the drug found in my system?
Having a prescription for the medication you are taking, and taking it properly, will not keep you from a DUI arrest. However, an attorney with experience in defending DUI cases can discuss with you if your particular regimen gives you any defenses.
What is a toxicology report and how is it used?
If the officer feels you are under the influence of drugs, the officer will request a urine sample. This sample is sent to a lab for analysis. The report that is sent back listing the drugs found in your system is called a “toxicology report.” It is similar to a breath testing affidavit in that the State will attempt to introduce it at trial to show proof of impairment.
The same type of report is used if you had a blood sample taken. The toxicology report for a blood sample is a bit more detailed than that of a urine sample but serves the same purpose.
What is a DRE?
A DRE is a type of law enforcement officer who has received special training in recognizing drug impairment. If the judge allows the DRE’s testimony in court, he or she will attest to several additional factors.
For instance, DRE’s take an offender’s temperature, blood pressure and pulse. The measure pupil dilation in light and dark rooms. They look for eyelid tremors, pale skin, track marks or other physical signs of impairment.
The DRE will then try to testify that they can tie these observations to a certain type or category of drug. Not all judges allow for this type of testimony.
What are the penalties for a Drug DUI?
The penalties for a Drug DUI are the same as those for a DUI involving alcohol. The penalty you receive depends on whether it is a first, second or subsequent arrest. At a minimum you face:
- a license suspension of 6 months;
- a maximum jail sentence of 6 months;
- DUI School;
- Substance abuse treatment;
- 50 hours of community service;
- and a $500 fine.
Drug DUIs are becoming more and more common, especially among the elderly. It is very important to fully investigate a drug DUI case as there are usually several valid defenses available.
DUI with Property Damage
DUI with Property Damage is usually charged as the result of a car accident. It can also be charged if you run into a tree, fence or mailbox. But most often it is a result of an accident investigation. This can lead to defenses under the accident report privilege.
What is DUI with Property Damage?
DUI with Property Damage is basically a DUI charge where an accident of some type has occurred. The accident does not have to be with another car. It can be a one car accident where you hit a fence or pole. To prove the crime of DUI with Property Damage the State must prove that you:
- Drove or were in actual physical control of a vehicle; and
- while driving or in actual physical control of the vehicle you were under the influence of alcohol or drugs to the point that your normal faculties were impaired; and
- that as a result of operating the vehicle you caused or contributed to causing damage to the property of another person.
So if the State can prove that someone else has damage to their car, home, mailbox, light pole, fence, or any other property because of you driving under the influence you can be found guilty of DUI with Property Damage.
- Yes. DUI with Property Damage is still a DUI charge. It is a first degree misdemeanor. The maximum penalty for DUI with Property Damage is one year in the county jail.
- If you are convicted of DUI with Property Damage, you face a fine of $1000 per count!! This means if you have been charged with more than one count of DUI with Property Damage (ie: you hit more than one car) you can face a fine of $1000 for each offense.
- License Suspension
- Yes. If you are convicted of DUI with Property Damage your license will be suspended. The amount of time the license will be suspended for depends on your breath alcohol level and also whether your DUI charge is a first, second or third offense. The minimum suspension is 6 months. The maximum suspension can be up to five years if it is a second Dui within a five year period.
- Other Penalties
- Probation is a mandatory condition for all DUI charges. You will also be court ordered to complete DUI school and any recommended substance abuse treatment. The court will most likely also order a victim impact panel and community service.
- In addition, the Court may order restitution. Restitution is an amount of money ordered to the person whose property you damaged. The idea is that you should have to reimburse that person for money they paid to fix their property. However, sometimes people will try to ask for more money than they are entitled to. It is very important to have an attorney with experience in restitution hearings to represent you in these matters so you do not get overcharged!!!
- Having a conviction for DUI with property damage can affect a civil suit if there is one filed. In order to protect yourself you should consider consulting an attorney who is familiar both with DUI defenses and the civil implications of the conviction.
Commercial Vehicle DUI/CDL DUI
Florida law holds CDL drivers to a higher standard than that of a person holding a regular driver’s license. DUI convictions can be devastating and destroy the driver’s livelihood. In addition Dui charges remain on the driver’s DAC, or driving record whether there is a conviction or not. This can lead to employment issues in the future.
Can I get a hardship license if I have a CDL?
No. CDL drivers are not eligible for a hardship or BPO license if they are convicted of DUI. They must go for the entire suspension period with no license.
Is there a difference in the blow?
For the criminal charge the standard is the same. You can be charged with DUI if you blow .08 or above. There is no separate DUI charge specific to CDL drivers.
However, on the administrative side, if you hold a CDL and you blow over a .04 your CDL will be suspended for one year. If it is the second time you have blown over a .04 your CDL will be revoked permanently.
What if I have a hazmat endorsement?
If you have a hazmat endorsement, and you are found to be driving under the influence while transporting hazardous materials, your license will be suspended for three years!! There is no provision for a hardship license during this three year period.
If you receive the DUI while operating the commercial vehicle the consequences can be even worse. It is very, very important to seek counsel if you have been arrested for DUI as a commercial driver.
DUI Under the age of 21/Zero Tolerance
Florida has very strict laws when it comes to underage drinking. If you drink and drive while underage you will be charged. Florida law has specified that if an officer even suspects alcohol use by an underage person they can ask for an immediate breath test without probable cause. The laws are very complex in this area, but the bottom line is you can’t even have one drink if you are under 21 without facing criminal charges.
What is “Zero Tolerance”?
The Florida Zero Tolerance law is a specific law pertaining to drivers under the age of 21. The purpose of the law is to discourage underage drinking. The law states that Florida will have “zero tolerance” for any drinking by a person underage. In order to enforce this, the State of Florida has given law enforcement the authority to breath test a person under 21 if the officer feels they have had anything to drink. The officer does not need to have reason to believe that the person is impaired. Only that they drank any amount of an alcoholic beverage.
How is Zero Tolerance enforced?
Any driver under 21 that is stopped by law enforcement and is found to have a blood alcohol level of .02 or higher will automatically have their Florida driver’s license suspended for 6 months. It does not matter that you may not be impaired at that level. The .02 level is the level the Florida legislature believes you may have if you are underage and have had even one alcoholic beverage. Since the law states that there will be no tolerance for an underage person to even have one drink the limit is allowed to be lower.
What are the penalties under the zero tolerance law?
- If it is the first time that you are caught with a blow of .02 or higher, your license will be suspended for six months.
- If it is a second or subsequent offense then the suspension is 1 year.
- If you are under 21 and you refuse to submit to the breath test the first suspension is one year.
- If you are under 21 and you refuse to submit a second or subsequent time the suspension is 18 months.
The suspension of your license is effective immediately. If you are under the age of 16, or if you do not yet have a license, the suspension does not come into effect until you are eligible for a license.
If the breath or blood alcohol level is .05 or higher the suspension remains in effect until a substance abuse class is completed. If you do not complete the substance abuse treatment within the suspension period, your license will remain suspended indefinitely until you finish the course.
Having a DUI conviction as an underage drinker can affect school and financial aid. You can be denied entry into professional programs such as nursing or legal study. If you are arrested for DUI you must consult an attorney to discuss options and all possible consequences of your charge.
BUI/Boating under the Influence
Just when you thought it was safe to go into the water – the DUI laws followed. More and more enforcement is being sought in this area as personal watercraft become more popular. With the increase of water traffic in smaller and smaller areas, accidents have become more common. This means stricter laws and tighter enforcement.
What is BUI?
BUI is “Boating Under the Influence.” Just like in DUI charges, if you are found to be operating a water vessel including sailboats, motorboats, and jet skis while under the influence of drugs or alcohol to the point that your normal faculties are impaired you can be charged with BUI.
What are the penalties for BUI?
If you are found guilty of BUI, you can be fined, placed on probation and even be sent to jail!! You may be ordered to perform community service and you may have to undergo a substance abuse evaluation and treatment. A guideline to the penalties is as follows:
- A first offense is punishable by a fine of $500 to $1000 dollars
- A second offense is punishable by a fine of $1000 to $2000 dollars
- A third offense within a 10 year period is punishable by fines up to $5000 dollars.
- A third offense outside of ten years is punishable by fines of $2000 to $5000 dollars
- A fourth offense has a minimum fine of $2000 dollars but no maximum
- If your alcohol content is above a .15 the fines are doubled.
- If you cause bodily injury the fine is $5000 dollars
- If you cause a death the fine is $10,000 dollars.
- A first offense is punishable by six months in the county jail
- A second offense is punishable by nine months in the county jail
- A third offense within a 10 year period is a third degree felony punishable by five years in prison!!
- A third offense outside of ten years is punishable by up to one year in the county jail.
- A fourth offense is a third degree felony punishable by five years in prison!
- If your alcohol content is above a .15
- A first offense is nine months in county jail
- A second offense is one year in the county jail
- If you have a minor in the boat you can receive one year in the county jail
- If you cause bodily injury it is a third degree felony punishable by five years in prison!
- If you cause a death then it is a second degree felony punishable by up to 15 years in prison!!
Can I lose my boat?
If you are found guilty of BUI, your boat can be impounded. For a first offense your boat will be impounded for 10 days. For a second or subsequent offense it is 30 days.
Can I refuse a breath test for a BUI?
If you refuse to take a breath or urine test when you are suspected of BUI, you can receive a fine of $500. If you refuse more than once you can be charged with a misdemeanor. The State can also use the refusal against you in a criminal proceeding to argue consciousness of guilt.
Can I lose my driver’s license?
You can’t have your driver’s license suspended for a BUI.
However, Florida law states that a driver’s license can be suspended for failing to pay any court costs or fines. So if you fail to pay your court ordered fines or court costs incurred as a result of your BUI charge, that failure to pay can result in a suspension of your driving privilege.
This is a general overview of the types of DUI charges that can be received in Florida. This is meant to be a starting point for discussion with your attorney. This is not meant to be legal advice. The Dui laws get stricter every year and the consequences get worse. It is important you explore all options to make the best decision for you!