First Offense DUI/OUI in Massachusetts

Massachusetts categorizes a DUI as an OUI (Operating Under the Influence) and a first offense can trigger severe penalties. Most drivers don't incur the maximum penalties but even the minimum assessment can cost thousands of dollars and require considerable time. Penalties will increase, as with all DUI convictions if a child is in the vehicle or if the BAC is much escalated from the minimum threshold of .08%. A first offender can often expect: one-year probation, a license suspension for 45-90 days, and a 16 week mandatory drug & alcohol education program.

Administrative Penalties

  • First offense OUI offenders face an administrative license suspension of up to one year in Massachusetts, with the potential for a hardship license after only three (3) months. However, if a case is resolved via alternative disposition, most offenders will face license suspension of forty-five (45) to ninety (90) days with immediate eligibility for hardship license
  • Refusals to submit under implied consent laws, for a first offense, carry mandatory license suspension periods of one hundred and eighty (180) days
  • Reinstatement of license is contingent upon payment of reinstatement fines and fees, as well as case-specific eligibility considerations for a hardship license. If involved in alternative disposition, reinstatement contingent upon aforementioned factors, plus completion of Drug and Alcohol Education program
  • Ignition interlock device possible for first offenders, including those involved in hardship license option

Criminal Penalties

How Much Will it Cost?

To get an idea of how much a first offense DUI will cost you, see our article on the cost of a DUI.

  • First offense OUI in Massachusetts carries no mandatory minimum period of incarceration, but offenders face potential prolonged house arrest. The maximum penalty is two and a half years. Offenders opting for alternative disposition face no incarceration or house arrest, but undergo unsupervised probation for one (1) year
  • Fines range widely, with minimums set at $500 and maximums set at $5,000. Actual expenses and costs significantly higher, including costs of completing sentence, costs of reinstatement, and if applicable, fees associated with alternative disposition of OUI case
  • Convictions influence sentencing and charges in subsequent arrests for life

Getting Legal Help

Because first-time OUIs are case-specific (dependent on the facts of the case), you may want to consult with a Massachusetts first OUI lawyer to learn more about your legal rights and options.

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