As harsh as the penalties are for a first DUI conviction in Florida, the consequences are far worse if you are convicted a second time within five years. For example, instead of a 90-day to one-year revocation of your driver's license, you face a five-year revocation.
Rather than assuming you will never get a second DUI conviction, it's important to do everything you can to avoid a first conviction.
What are the penalties for a first DUI conviction in Florida?
The penalties for a first DUI conviction are:
- Driver's license revocation of from 180 days to one year with a possibility of a hardship license to drive to and from work
- From $500 to $1,000 fine
- While jail time is not mandatory, the judge can order a jail sentence of up to six months
The penalties are higher if you have a minor in the vehicle or you have a BAC of .15 or higher. You may also face higher insurance rates and employment consequences.
What are the penalties for a second DUI conviction?
The penalties for a second DUI conviction are:
- Driver's license revocation for five years, with no hardship license for the first 12 months
- From $1,000 to $2,000 fine
- Jail time of from 10 days to nine months
The penalties are higher if you have a minor in the vehicle or you have a BAC of .15 or higher.
How can I avoid a DUI conviction?
The best way to avoid a drunk-driving conviction is to hire a cab or use a designated driver if you consume alcohol before driving. If it's too late to avoid arrest, contact an experienced DUI defense attorney as soon as possible. Just because you failed a field sobriety or breath test does not mean the state can convict you of drunk driving.