Second Offense DUI or DWAI in Colorado

DUI offenses are serious crimes in Colorado. Generally a first and second DUI offense will be considered a misdemeanor crime.

Felony or Misdemeanor?

A first and second DUI offense in Colorado is considered a misdemeanor crime. However if the driver causes bodily injury or property damage the charge may be a felony DUI. A felony DUI offense is punishable with imprisonment exceeding 12 months.

Administrative Penalties                   

The period of suspension for second DUI offense is one year. However if the person refuses to subject himself to a chemical test when requested by the arresting officer, the period of suspension will be two years. A person who has been arrested for DUI in Colorado has 7 days to seek an administrative hearing. If the person does not request an administrative hearing within 7 days, it will result in automatic suspension of the driver’s license. Generally the person will be issued a 7 day driving permit when his or her license is taken away by the police at the time of the arrest.

Look Back Period

Colorado has no lookback period. Any DUI -- for example, even if it was 30 years ago -- counts as a prior alcohol offense.

Criminal Penalties

Second DUI: A person convicted for a second DUI offense will have to spend a minimum of 10 days in prison. The person may also have to pay a fine. This fine cannot be less than $1000 and more than $5000. A conviction for a second DUI offense will also result in a license suspension of at least one year. The exact period of suspension will depend on the time gap between the first and the second conviction. 12 points will also be added to the driver’s license on a second DUI conviction. The person may also have to do 60 to 120 hours of community service.

Second DWAI: The penalties for a second Driving With Ability Impaired (DWAI) conviction are:



License Suspension


45 day to 1 year (5 day mandatory)

$600 to $1000

1 year

48-96 hours of community service

Plea Options

In Colorado a person charged with a second DUI offense can plead guilty to a lesser offense as part of a plea bargain. However it is unlikely that the court will accept the plea bargain for a second DUI offense unless there are mitigating factors.

Get Legal Advice

If you have been charged with a second offense DUI in Colorado, consult with an experienced Colorado DUI attorney.

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