The Difference Between DUI and DWI in Missouri

Technically, DUI means driving under the influence of some type drug. That can mean alcohol, prescriptions, or illegal drugs. DWI means simply driving while intoxicated, and in many states, refers to the use of alcohol.

The use of the terms can be interchangeable but DWI usually refers more to the severity the drug has metabolized within the offending person’s body.

Missouri defines DWI as the offense of operating a motor vehicle in a physically or mentally impaired condition after consuming enough to raise one’s blood alcohol content above the statutory limit, or after consuming drugs.

Missouri usually adds another term related to drug abuse and driving, Driving Under the Influence of Drugs or DUID, but the definition for such is similar to the definition of DWI. So, the use of the term DUID relates to the law concerning types of drugs other than alcohol.

For first time offenses in Missouri, convictions can be quiet severe. Conviction of a first DWI or DUID is a class B misdemeanor that can carry the following penalties:

  • Jail: Up to a maximum of six months imprisonment.
  • Fine: Up to $500 plus court costs between $10 and $100.
  • Probation: The general terms of probation are no drinking, do not break the law, and attend the states Substance Abuse Traffic Offenders Program (SATOP). Probation usually lasts for 1 to 2 years and is commonly referred to as a Suspended Imposition Sentence or SIS.
  • Suspension of Driving Privileges: A 30-day license suspension followed by a 60-day restriction to driving only to and from work, in the course of employment, or to alcohol treatment is automatic. The suspension goes on the person’s driving record. The court may also require that a person be restricted to driving a motor vehicle which has an ignition interlock device while on probation. The device costs $50.00-100.00 to install and $50.00-$75.00 per month to maintain. A conviction will result in 8 points being assessed against the driver’s license.

Kansas City police are known to conduct a drunken driving checkpoints in areas known for drunken driving crashes or arrests.

Whatever term you refer to drinking and driving or drunk driving, states are clamping down on these type traffic violations. When you face these kinds of charges, it is no time to handle your case all by yourself. You may need an attorney who understands such cases. Contact DUIAttorneyHome.com to help you get in contact with a lawyer who can help you understand the subtle differences in the legal jargon of Missouri law, and who will represent YOUR best interests.

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