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Virginia - Second Drunk Driving Arrest and Penalties

[caption id="" align="alignright" width="300" caption="Image via Wikipedia"]The Virginia welcome sign at the Virginia welc...[/caption] If you have been arrested for a second DUI in Virginia it is important to talk to a DUI lawyer. Did you know that you can face not only criminal DUI penalties but civil DUI penalties too? If you have been arrested there is no need to panic but you need to take some aggressive steps to protect your right to drive and fight your second drunk driving charges.

Civil Penalties after Virginia DUI

  Under Virginia’s Implied Consent laws if you have been arrested for DUI and you refuse to take the blood alcohol content test you will face an immediate administrative license suspension. License suspensions after either a chemical test failure or a chemical test refusal can range from 7 to 60 days, depending on whether you previously refused or failed a blood alcohol content test. Keep in mind, these are civil penalties and are not contingent on a DUI conviction. Many drivers also wonder what will happen if they attempt to get a driver’s license in another state. Most states either belong to the National Drivers Registry or are part of the Driver License Compact. Both programs allow states to share information with other states about a driver’s driving record and whether or not they have been convicted of a DUI and have had their license suspended.

Criminal Penalties for Virginia DUI

  It is illegal for drivers to operate a motorized vehicle in the state of Virginia for with a blood alcohol content of 0.08%. Drivers who are under the age of 21 can be arrested for drunk driving if their blood alcohol content is 0.02% or higher. Commercial drivers can be arrested and charged for DUI if their BAC is 0.04% or higher. What if your BAC is less than the illegal limit? Unfortunately, drivers who have consumed alcohol and who are unable to safely operate their car may also be arrested and convicted of DUI, assuming the state has enough evidence to prove that they were unable to safely operate their motorized vehicle.

Penalties for a Second DUI in Virginia

  If you have been arrested for DUI and it has been less than 10 years from a previous drunk driving arrest than you will be charged with a second Virginia DUI. What Virginia drunk driving penalties will you face?
  • Jail time for 20 days to 1 year if the last DUI arrest was less than 5 years ago. If you are arrested with a minor in the car you can expect more jail time.
  • Jail time for 10 days to one month if your BAC is less than 0.15%. Jail time is added for higher blood alcohol content (BAC) levels.
  • Suspended license for up to 3 years
  • Required installation of an ignition interlock device prior to a reinstatement of your Virginia driver’s license.
  • Fines up to $500. If you were arrested with a minor in the car you can expect higher fines.
  • Fines paid to the Trauma Center Fund
  • Mandatory completion of the alcohol safety action program

Hiring a DUI lawyer

  Whether you have been arrested for your first or second DUI it is time to talk to a DUI lawyer. DUI penalties will become increasingly more severe with each drunk driving arrest and conviction.
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