A first OUI (operating under the influence, sometimes called “DUI”) conviction is a class A misdemeanor in Alaska. An OUI qualifies as a first offense if the driver has no prior OUI convictions within the past 15 years. First offenders are generally looking at mandatory jail, a fine, and license suspension. However, many factors come into play with OUI sentencing. This article discusses the specific penalties you’ll face if convicted of a first-offense OUI in Alaska.
Jail time. A first OUI conviction in Alaska results in at least 72 hours in jail, with a maximum of one year. This time can generally be served via house arrest. During house arrest (or probation), the court can order the use of medication intended to prevent the consumption of alcohol.
Fines. A person who’s convicted of a first OUI must pay a fine of $1,500 to $25,000.
Forfeiture. Although it may not be all that common, the court can order that a first offender’s vehicle be forfeited and sold.
Upon a first OUI conviction, the court will order the driver’s license revoked for at least 90 days. However, after 30 days of suspension, the court can order that the driver be granted a restricted license. This restricted license authorizes the holder to travel to and from work with an installed ignition interlock device (IID). To be eligible for a restricted license, the applicant must provide certification of employment and proof of completion of or current participation in substance abuse treatment. Any violation of the IID restriction or treatment requirements will result in restricted license cancellation.
IIDs. After the required suspension period, there’s a six-month IID requirement.
Administrative action. At the time of arrest, a driver who fails or refuses to submit to a blood alcohol content (BAC) test will have his or her license seized. The driver will be issued a seven-day temporary license, but it cannot be used for the first 24 hours after issuance. The driver’s license will then be suspended for 90 days, assuming the driver doesn’t successfully challenge the administrative suspension. If the driver is later convicted of an OUI in court, the judge can decide whether to credit any time already completed on the administrative suspension against the suspension resulting from the conviction.