Driving Under the Influence (DUI) Laws By State

DRUNK DRIVING LAWS- All 50 states and the District of Columbia have "per se" laws defining it as a crime to be driving with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) at or above a specified level, currently 0.08 percent (0.08 g alcohol per 100 ml blood). UTAH level is lower, at 0.05 percent.

See also: Breath Alcohol Concentration (BAC) CHART

Driving license suspension or driving revocation traditionally follows conviction for alcohol-impaired (drunk) driving. Your driving licenses can also be taken before conviction, under a procedure called administrative driving license suspension, when a driver fails or refuses to take a chemical test. Because administrative driver license suspension occurs immediately, it has been found to be more effective than post-conviction sanctions. Administrative driver license suspension is allowed in 41 states and the District of Columbia.

Driving privileges in many states can be restored during a suspension, but drivers usually must demonstrate special hardship, and the restored privileges often come with limitations. For example, a person could be allowed only to drive to work or could be required to install an ignition interlock.

Interlock devices analyze a driver's breath and disable the ignition if the driver has been drinking. More than half of all U.S. states require DUI and DWI offenders to install interlocks on their vehicles in order to drive during a license suspension and/or require the devices for specified time periods before fully re-licensing offenders. In 16 states and 4 California counties, such a restriction is applied to all drunk driving offenders, including first-time offenders. An additional 15 states apply the restriction to drunk driving offenders with a high BAC (usually 0.15 percent or higher) and to repeat offenders, and 6 states apply the restriction only to repeat offenders.

The remaining states don't have mandatory interlock laws, though courts or departments of motor vehicles have the discretion to require them.

StateAdministrative driving license suspension 1st offense?Restore driving privileges during suspension?Are ignition interlocks mandatory under state law for the following drunk driving offenses?
   First offendersRepeat offenders
Alabama90 daysnohigh-BAC offenders onlyyes
Alaska90 daysafter 30 days1all offendersyes
Arizona90 daysafter 30 days1all offendersyes
Arkansas6 monthsyes1all offendersyes
California4 monthsafter 30 days1all offenders (in 4 counties)2no
Colorado3 monthsyes1all offendersyes
Connecticut90 daysyes1all offenders(effective 12/01/12)yes
Delaware3 monthsnohigh-BAC offenders onlyyes
District of Columbia2-90 daysyes1nono
Florida6 monthsafter 30 days1high-BAC offenders onlyyes
Georgia1 yearyes1noyes3
Hawaii3 monthsafter 30 days1all offendersyes
Idaho90 daysafter 30 days1nono
Illinois6 monthsafter 30 days1all offendersyes
Indiana180 daysafter 30 days1nono
Iowa180 daysafter 90 days1nono
Kansas30 daysnoall offendersyes
Kentuckynonot applicablenono
Louisiana90 daysafter 30 days1all offendersyes
Maine90 daysyes1nono
Maryland45 daysyes1high-BAC offenders onlyyes
Massachusetts90 daysnonoyes
Michigannonot applicablehigh-BAC offenders onlyyes
Minnesota90 daysafter 15 days1high-BAC offenders onlyyes
Mississippi90 daysnonono
Missouri30 daysnonoyes
Montananonot applicablenoyes
Nebraska180 daysafter 30 days1all offendersyes
Nevada90 daysafter 45 days1nono
New Hampshire6 monthsnohigh-BAC offenders onlyyes
New Jerseynonot applicablehigh-BAC offenders onlyyes
New Mexico6 monthsyes1all offendersyes
New Yorkvariable4yes1all offendersyes
North Carolina30 daysafter 10 days1high-BAC offenders onlyyes
North Dakota91 daysafter 30 days1nono
Ohio90 daysafter 15 days1nono
Oklahoma180 daysyes1high-BAC offenders onlyyes
Oregon90 daysafter 30 days1all offendersyes
Pennsylvanianonot applicablenoyes
Rhode Islandnonot applicablenono
South Carolinanonot applicablenoyes
South Dakotanonot applicablenono
Tennesseenonot applicablehigh-BAC offenders onlyyes
Texas90 daysyes1high-BAC offenders only5yes
Utah120 daysnoall offendersyes
Vermont90 daysnonono
Virginia7 daysnoall offenders(effective 07/01/12)yes
Washington90 daysyes1all offendersyes
West Virginia6 monthsafter 30 days 1high-BAC offenders onlyyes
Wisconsin6 monthsyes1high-BAC offenders onlyyes
Wyoming90 daysyes1high-BAC offenders onlyyes

Drivers usually must demonstrate special hardship to justify restoring driving privileges during suspension, and even then driving privileges often are restricted.

First offender pilot program in 4 counties - Alameda, Los Angeles, Sacramento, and Tulare.

Interlock is mandatory unless waived due to financial hardship.

In New York, administrative driving license suspension lasts until prosecution is complete.

In Texas, an interlock is mandatory for first offense high-BAC as a condition of suspending the jail sentence.

The above chart and information is provided by OHS, Inc. to you through the courtesy of The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, Highway Loss Data Institute | http://www.highwaysafety.org

Last modified: April-2012


Please note, that this DUI/DWI information is for general informational purposes only and is subject to change without notice. At any given time one or more states may be reviewing or revising their drunk driving laws, and the legal limits they set for BAC while driving a motor vehicle. Therefore, if you need this drunk driving laws information for legal purposes, please confirm the information shown above for your state with your state's own department of transportation or with a state or local police agency.

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