Washington DC DUI Fines & Penalties

Learn about the penalties for a DUI conviction in Washington DC.

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What are the penalties for a DUI in Washington DC?


1st Offense

2nd Offense

3rd Offense

Jail

90 days max.

1 year max.

1 year max.

Fines and Penalties

$300 to $1,000

$1,000 to $5,000

$2,000 to $10,000

License Suspension

6 months

1 year

2 years

IID** Required

No

No

No

Lookback Period: 15 years (Period of time that prior DUIs are relevant for sentencing. Also known as a “washout” period.)

**Ignition Interlock Device

How much do you have to drink (BAC*) for a DUI in the District of Columbia?

Under 21

.00%  D.C. is zero tolerance

21 or older

.08%

Commercial

.04%

** BAC = blood alcohol content

How many drinks does it take? Check the BAC chart.

You may want to try our BAC Calculator, however I wouldn't let any results encourage you to drink and drive.

What if you refuse to take a chemical test in the District of Columbia?

the District of Columbia has an implied consent law. That means that if you refuse to submit to a chemical test you will be subject to a fine and automatic license suspension. Learn more about the District of Columbia’s implied consent law.

 

1st Offense

2d Offense

3rd Offense

Refusal to take test

1 year license suspension

1 year license suspension

1 year license suspension

Disclaimer: We try to keep the information provided here up to date. However, laws often change, as do their interpretation and application. Different jurisdictions within a state may enforce the laws in different ways. For that reason, we recommended that you seek the advice of a local attorney familiar with DUI cases in your area.

Can you plead to a lesser offense than DUI in the District of Columbia?

A defendant might receive a "wet reckless," or a conviction of reckless driving involving alcohol, as a result of a plea bargain in which a charge of drunk driving is reduced to a case of reckless driving. There is no statutory provision on whether a wet reckless plea bargain will be accepted in the District of Columbia, but it's possible a lawyer may be able to create a plea bargain for you.

Drinking and Driving Laws in the District of Columbia

It is illegal in the District of Columbia to drive with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .08 or above. The .08 percent limit is the standard measurement used by all states for the "impaired" driver. Washington DC has a Zero Tolerance for drivers under the age of 21. This means that if you are under the age of 21 you are not allowed to have any measurable alcohol in your system. The Washington DC DUI / DWI law also includes driving under the influence of controlled substances such as marijuana, cocaine, inhalants and other drugs.

How many drinks does it take to reach the legal limit in Washington DC? This question is usually asked by people who want to know how many drinks it would take to reach the .08 limit. There are charts and calculators to help you determine the number of drinks it would take to reach the .08 BAC limit, however these tools do not factor in all variables that contribute to the BAC equation. 

The best answer is not to drink and drive. The Washington DC has strict laws for drunk driving, and when you drink and drive in Washington DC, you risk your freedom, finances and your future. The first time your are convicted of a DUI / DWI in Washington DC you will receive a fine between $300 and $1,000. You may also receive up to 90 days in jail and a 6 Month license revocation.

The second time you are convicted of a DUI / DWI in the District of Columbia you will receive a fine between $1,000 and $5,000. You could receive up to 1 year in jail and have your license suspended for 1 Year.

If you are convicted of a 3rd DUI / DWI in Washington DC you will receive a fine between $2,000 and $10,000. You may receive a sentence of 1 year in Jail and have your license suspended for 2 Years.

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