What are the DUI penalties in Georgia?

On Behalf of | Jun 7, 2023 | DUI

A driver can be charged with driving under the influence (DUI) in Georgia if they’ve consumed enough alcohol that their blood alcohol concentration (BAC) is over 0.08%. This is the same limit that is used across most of the United States. It is worth noting that commercial drivers have a lower BAC limit of 0.04%, and underage drivers have a BAC limit of 0.02%.

Additionally, drivers can be arrested on DUI charges even if they do not have a BAC that is over the limit. For example, drivers who show evidence of marijuana usage could be given a DUI. Additionally, drivers who demonstrate impairment, even with an alcohol level that is lower than 0.08%, could still be arrested. What types of ramifications would they face?

First offense

The number of prior offenses matters significantly. For a first offense, 24 hours behind bars is mandatory, and potential jail time runs from one day to one year. A person’s driver’s license could also be suspended for a year, and they may have to pay fees and court costs that range up to $1,000.

Second offense

When someone gets a second offense, then they must spend 72 hours behind bars. Their eventual jail term could run from 90 days to a full year. Their license suspension could also start at one year, but it may be as long as three years. They could also have to pay fines that range up to $1,000.

Third offense

When an individual winds up with a third DUI offense, it’s mandatory that they spend 15 days in jail. They may eventually be given a term of incarceration up to an entire year, along with a license suspension lasting for five years. The court costs could be as much as $5,000. Additionally, those who get a third offense within 10 years of their first could be charged with a felony, making things more severe than they would be otherwise.

Exploring legal options

Whether charges are filed for a first offense or a subsequent one, the ramifications can be severe. Those who are facing these types of accusations need to know about the legal options at their disposal. Seeking legal guidance right away can be helpful, as a result.