Maine law prohibits operating or attempting to operate a watercraft while under the influence of drugs or alcohol. A person can be convicted of boating under the influence (BUI) for operating a watercraft while:
In other words—just like how it works with Maine's operating-under-the-influence (OUI) laws—you can be convicted of a BUI for boating with an excessive amount of alcohol in your system or while actually intoxicated by drugs or alcohol.
The consequences of a Maine BUI conviction depend on the circumstances of the case. But generally, a BUI is a class D misdemeanor and the possible penalties are:
For purposes of determining whether a BUI is a second or subsequent offense, only prior convictions within the past six years count.
In addition to the other penalties, a judge can order any BUI offender to participate in substance abuse education and treatment.
Boating under the influence in the tidewaters or offshore waters of Maine is a class E misdemeanor. Convicted boaters face up to $1,000 in fines and a maximum six months in jail.
The consequences of a Maine BUI are serious, and the facts of every case are different. If you've been arrested for boating under the influence, get in touch with an experienced BUI lawyer. A qualified attorney can explain how the law applies to the facts of your case and help you decide on the best course of action.