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Minnesota DUI Information

Minnesota state law defines driving while impaired, or DWI, as operating a motor vehicle with a blood alcohol content of .10% or greater.  Individuals found guilty of this offense may be charged with one or more of four degrees of DWI along with the potential for aggravating factors, which may include a prior DWI incident, a blood alcohol content of .20% or higher and driving with a passenger under the age of 16 while impaired.

Depending on which degree the offender is charged with, penalties will vary.  A fourth degree charge, which indicates no prior DWI license revocations, compliance with testing and a blood alcohol content level of less than .20%, will carry penalties of up to 90 days in jail, a $1,000 fine and a license suspension for a period of up to 90 days.  A third degree charge is entered against anyone who has one aggravating factor or if the offender refused testing, and subjects the offender to up to one year in jail, a $3,000.00 fine and a potential license suspension for up to six months.  A second degree charge is entered if there are two aggravating factors in conjunction with a DWI and is subject to incarceration for up to one year, a $3,000.00 fine, possible license suspension for up to six months and being held in jail until the first court appearance.  A first degree charge is entered if there are three or more aggravating factors present and is considered a felony, which subjects the offender to incarceration for up to five years, a $10,000.00 fine and a potential license suspension for up to 6 months.  In some cases, the offender may be eligible for a limited license if he/she has a driving record that the court feels is adequate.  This type of license allows the offender to drive to and from work.

In addition to these charges, any individual who refuses testing will face a potential misdemeanor or felony charge resulting in immediate license suspension for up to one year.Offenders may be required to attend one or more alcohol treatment programs, a chemical evaluation and must attend any court ordered counseling. 

Youthful offenders, who are under 21 years of age and have any amount of alcohol present in their system, are subject to the same fines and penalties as adult offenders.  Individuals who are involved in a DUI, which causes personal injury or death, may face felony charges and much harsher penalties.

Upon conviction or an admission of guilt, DUI offenders are commonly faced with problems relating to their insurance company.  Immediately being labeled as “high risk” drivers, offenders are often dropped by their insurance company altogether or, at the very least, are required to pay much higher rates than before.  In the event that the offender is forced to look for a new insurance provider, he/she may have a difficult time finding a new company who offers high risk policies but, if they do, the rates will likely be extremely high for the amount of coverage granted.





DISCLAIMER: This website provides only general information intended to be a starting point for most legal issues. This information is not legal advice, nor is it intended to create any binding advisory relationship. Do not take action based upon this information unless you consult with an attorney or other specialist.