First Offense OVI/DUI in Ohio

A first DUI in Ohio (known as OVI in Ohio), results in both criminal and administrative penalties for adult offenders. Minors and commercial drivers charged with first offense DUI/OVI will face different penalties than those noted.

Administrative Penalties

  • The first time you are arrested and convicted of drunk driving in Ohio, you will receive an Administrative License Suspension (ALS) of 90 days. This ALS suspension is independent of your court ordered suspension that will be from 6 months to 3 years in duration.
  • Ignition interlock devices not required, but in an effort to obtain hardship/occupations driving privilege during suspension period, first offense drivers will be required to utilize an ignition interlock device
  • Treatment or assessments are not a requirement of reinstatement for first offenders
  • Reinstatement fee = $450

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.

  • If your blood alcohol concentration (BAC) was between .08%-.17% you will serve a mandatory 72 hours in jail (and can be sentenced up to six months).  
  • If  BAC  above .17, offender faces minimum incarceration period of six (6) days.
  • You will also be ordered to pay a fine between $250 and $1,000 and do not include costs incurred in completing terms of sentence (such as costs of attendance in driver intervention program), nor do they cover costs associated with license reinstatement.
  • Convictions carry over and influence future DUI charges and sentencing for a period of six (6) years in the state of Ohio

Getting Legal Help

The state of Ohio does not expressly bar reduction of OVI offenses into lesser criminal offenses. Likewise, the legal system affords defendants significant time to contest the charges, while actively seeking dismissal or favorable plea agreements. For more information and insight into this process, consult with an Ohio first DUI/OVI lawyer today.

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