Overview of Ohio Dui Laws

The DUI Laws in Ohio are surely some of the toughest in the entire nation, and for good reason. According to the Ohio Department of Public Safety, 8,236 people were killed and 351,458 were injured in 430,176 alcohol-related crashes in Ohio from 1985 to 1999. There are strong repercussions attached to committing a DUI offence in Ohio and these include probation, fines, minimum jail terms, reinstatement fees, driver intervention programs, restricted plates, interlock devices and license suspension.

For an individual facing a DUI charge in Ohio, the judge will determine the punishment and the appropriate sentence for your actions. If an offence is committed for the first time in 6 years, then this is considered to be a misdemeanour of the 1st degree. This will result in a minimum fine of $375 and a maximum fine of $1,075. Along with this a minimum jail sentence of 3 days and 6 months maximum may be applicable, or a driver intervention program with probation may be endured. It is possible to have a mandatory license suspension of 6 months to 3 years when charged with a first DUI offence in Ohio and driving privileges will be retracted for the first 15 days. An interlock device and optional DUI yellow license plates may also be necessary.

If an individual commits a second DUI conviction in 6 years, then this is also considered as a misdemeanour of 1st degree. The individual will be sentenced with a minimum of 10 days imprisonment and a maximum of 6 months or alternatively, 18 days of electronically monitored house arrest and 5 days in jail. This may be accompanied by an additional course of continuous alcohol monitoring. A rather hefty fine is attached to a second DUI offence, with a minimum fine of $525 and a maximum of $1,625. The individual may be subject to an alcohol/drug assessment and mandatory license suspension of 1 to 5 years. Driving privileges will be retracted for the first 45 days and a 90 day vehicle immobilizer will be registered to the defendant. Mandatory restricted DUI plates and an interlock device may also be necessary.

The third DUI conviction and any convictions beyond this will ultimately result in a fine of $850 to $10,500. As well as this, all DUI penalties will continuously increase depending on how frequently you are convicted of a DUI offence in Ohio. If an individual commits 3 or more prior DUIs within a 6 year period, any following DUI will be considered a 4th degree felony. Also, 5 or more prior DUIs within a 20 year period will be considered a 4th degree felony. Other appropriate sentences for a third DUI conviction in Ohio is vehicle forfeiture, license suspension (which could ultimately lead to permanent license suspension), interlock devices, mandatory treatment and mandatory DUI plates.