6Apr 2015
Apr 6, 2015

What you need to know about Drunk Driving Penalties and Repercussions of a Conviction in Alabama.

• Offending for the first time you can face imprisonment for up to one year, a fine of $600 to $2,100, or both. Suspension of driver’s license is up to 90 days. DUI or substance abuse programs may be required.

• Anyone committing a second DUI within five years of the first offense faces imprisonment, which may or may not include hard work labor, for up to one year. The imprisonment sentence shall include a mandatory sentence, which is not subject to suspension or probation, of imprisonment in the county or municipal jail for not less than five days or community service for not less than 30 days. Personal state fines range from $1,100 to $5,100. The driver’s license annulment period is one year.

• After a third conviction, the offender faces a prison term, which may include hard work labor, of up to one year. The imprisonment sentence will be 60 days at a minimum. The personal fines range from $2,100 to $10,100. The driver’s license is taken away for a period of three years.

• On a fourth or subsequent driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol conviction, the offender faces a prison term of one year and one day to 10 years. The personal fines range from $4,100 to $10,100. The driver’s license is then taken away for five years.

Increased Penalty for Driving Drunk while a child under the age of 14 is inside the vehicle at the time of arrest

When a person 21 or older is convicted of drunk driving and a child under 14 was in the vehicle at the time of the offense, the offender can expect to be sentenced to double the minimum criminal punishment than if they were alone or with another adult.

Increased Penalty for .15 BAC

If a convicted person is found to have had at least 0.15% or more by weight of alcohol in his or her blood while operating or being in actual physical control of a vehicle, he or she shall be sentenced to at least double the minimum punishment than if they were tested lower than the BAC limit.

Commercial Drivers

Commercial drivers face additional charges on top of any of those listed before for simply driving a vehicle with commercial plates. Upon committing a first DUI they will be disqualified from driving a commercial vehicle for one year. If they are transporting hazardous materials, the disqualification period is three years. An commercial driver convicted of a second DUI while driving any vehicle, the offender will be disqualified from driving a commercial vehicle for life, which could be reduced to 10 years with good behavior.

School Bus and Day Care Drivers

In addition to other penalties that may be imposed under Alabama’s DUI laws, school bus and day care drivers who are convicted of DUI for the first time will receive an automatic one-year driver’s license suspension.

Drivers Under 21

Any minor upon first violation whose blood alcohol level is between .02 and .08 will receive an automatic 30-day license suspension. They are required to attend a DUI or substance abuse program. A minor who is found guilty of DUI will be required to pay the same fines as anyone else or any age.