First Offense DUI in West Virginia
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The penalties and administrative sanctions imposed in a first DUI in West Virginia hinge entirely on the case-specific nature of each individual DUI case, especially regarding the BAC of the offender at the time of arrest. West Virginia DUI law employs a sliding scale of penalties and enhanced penalties for offenders in light of elevating factors, including extreme BAC (higher than .15) and whether minor (person under age of 16) is present in vehicle. For specific insight into your pending DUI case, it is imperative you consult with a West Virginia lawyer to discern the specific nature and potential penalties relevant to your charges.
- Drivers arrested under suspicion of DUI in West Virginia, first offense, face an impending administrative license suspension of six (6) months, pending the outcome of an administrative hearing
- Upon reinstatement, first offenders may be required to participate in an ignition interlock device program
- SR-22 insurance not mandatory per state statute, but may be required in light of no alternative insurance coverage options at time of reinstatement
- First offense convictions carry no mandatory period of incarceration in West Virginia for simple DUI offenses, but if enhanced factors exist, driver faces mandatory incarceration of at least two (2) days. Convictions carry maximum potential of incarceration for a period of six (6) months
- Fines range widely, but are capped at a maximum of $500 for simple, first offense DUI conviction. These fine amounts do not cover items such as court costs, assessment costs, or completion of other terms of one’s sentence. Fines enhanced to a maximum of $1,000 for elevated first offense DUI cases
- Alcohol or substance abuse assessment requirement likely
- Convictions for first offense will influence second offense DUI cases, if applicable, only if occurring within the next ten (10) years
Getting Legal Help
West Virginia does not statutorily prohibit reduction of DUI offenses to lesser criminal convictions. Likewise, defendants facing these charges are free to actively seek out dismissal or negotiate favorable plea agreements, ideally upon the advice and representation of legal counsel. For more information and insight on a first offense DUI in West Virginia, consult with a West Virginia DUI lawyer to learn more.