Second DUI Offense in Nebraska

The administrative and criminal penalties for a second DUI in Nebraska.

In Nebraska, a person can be convicted of driving under the influence (DUI) for operating or being in “actual physical control” of a motor vehicle:

The term “under the influence” means the person’s ability to drive a vehicle in a “prudent and cautious manner” is impaired to an “appreciable degree.”

A DUI arrest typically leads to administrative (license-related) consequences. In addition to administrative penalties, there are criminal penalties imposed if the defendant is convicted of DUI in court.

Administrative Penalties

License revocation. In Nebraska, a motorist is required to submit to a blood, breath, and/or urine test if there are reasonable grounds to believe the motorist was driving under the influence.

Under the implied consent law, the Nebraska Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) will revoke the license of any driver who fails or refuses to take a chemical test. In most circumstances, a BAC of .08% or more is considered a failed test. The revocation periods are:

  • one year for a failed test if the person has one or more prior license revocations, and
  • one year for a refusal.

Generally, the arresting officer will take the offender’s license and issue a temporary license that’s valid for 15 days.

Ignition interlock permit. An offender whose license has been revoked can petition for an administrative hearing to fight the revocation. Offenders who waive the hearing are eligible to apply for an ignition interlock permit to use during the period of revocation.

With a failed test, the motorist can drive with an ignition interlock permit after completing 60 days of the revocation period. Motorists who refused testing, on the other hand, must complete 105 days of the revocation period before they’ll be allowed to drive with the permit.

Criminal Penalties

The criminal penalties imposed for a second DUI offense vary depending on the defendant’s BAC and whether probation or a suspended sentence is granted. Typically, penalties are more severe if the defendant’s BAC was .15% or more. If a suspended sentence is granted, the defendant is usually sentenced to jail time but is allowed to serve all or part of the time on probation instead of in jail.

Conviction Sentence

BAC less than .15%. A second DUI conviction with a BAC of less than .15% is a class W misdemeanor and carries:

  • 30 days to six months in jail
  • a $500 fine, and
  • an 18-month license revocation (the period is reduced by any period of administrative revocation imposed by the DMV).

Following a no-driving period of 45 days, the defendant is required to apply for an ignition interlock permit. An IID must be installed on any vehicle owned or operated by the offender for at least one year.

BAC .15% or more. A second DUI conviction is a class I misdemeanor if the defendant had a BAC of .15% or more or refused a chemical test. The convicted motorist will face:

  • 90 days to one year in jail
  • a $1,000 fine, and
  • a license revocation of at least 18 months, up to 15 years.

The court can require all vehicles owned by the defendant to be immobilized for at least five days, but not more than eight months. As an alternative to immobilization, the defendant can be required to apply for an ignition interlock permit and install an IID after a 45-day no driving period. The offender must retain the permit and IID for at least one year or for the revocation period, whichever is longer.

Probation or Suspended Sentence

BAC less than .15%. A defendant whose sentence is suspended on a second DUI will be looking at:

  • up to six months in jail with a minimum of either ten days in jail or 240 hours of community service
  • a $500 fine, and
  • an 18-month license revocation.

The offender is prohibited from driving for 45 days and must obtain an ignition interlock permit. The offender is also required to install an IID for at least one year or for the revocation period, whichever period is longer.

BAC .15% or more. Probationary sentences for second offenses involving a BAC of .15% or more include:

  • 30 days in jail
  • a $1,000 fine, and
  • an 18-month to 15-year license revocation.

The offender isn’t allowed to drive for 45 days and must apply for an ignition interlock permit during the period of revocation. An IID must be installed for at least one year or for the revocation period.

Additional Second-Offense Penalties

Alcohol assessment and treatment. An alcohol assessment and completion of the recommended treatment program is required for all DUI offenders. And the defendant is typically responsible for the costs of the assessment and treatment.

Alcohol monitoring device. The court can require second DUI offenders to use an alcohol monitoring device and abstain from alcohol use during the license revocation period.

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