how long do you lose your license with a dui in ohio
The moment your life is changed by a DUI in Ohio, you are likely to experience strong emotions. The fear and worry of not knowing how long you will lose your license and the struggles that accompany the lack of transportation can be overwhelming. Fortunately, the state of Ohio has clear guidelines for determining how long your license may be suspended after a DUI.
Although the Ohio Department of Motor Vehicles (ODMV) provides general information regarding DUIs, each case is unique and different penalties may be imposed. Generally speaking, a first-time offender convicted of an administrative OVI (Operating a Vehicle Impaired) per Ohio Revised Code is likely to have their license suspended for six months. During the six month period, the offender will have limited driving privileges that may allow them to commute to and from work and specific court ordered activities. Should the offender fail to comply with the conditions of their suspension, their license may be suspended for an additional five months.
In the event a court convicts an offender of a DUI, with or without a BAC (Blood Alcohol Content) reading above 0.08, the offender’s license can be suspended for six months. During this six month period, the offender is prohibited from operating any motorized vehicle, including motorcycles, and they will also face other potential penalties such as fines and community service. Similar to administrative suspensions, court orders may adjust suspended periods depending on the offenders situation.
Underage drivers convicted of DUI may experience a longer license suspension. Generally, underage drivers may lose their license for one year or potentially longer if they injure someone. Underage drivers operating a motor vehicle with a BAC reading over 0.17 may receive a three-year suspension. Additionally, offenders may face additional penalties, such as substance abuse treatment and educational programs.
If you or a loved one faces a license suspension due to DUI, it is recommended to contact an experienced criminal defense and/or DUI attorney for assistance. A seasoned lawyer could explain in further detail the suspension process and advise you or your loved one on the best approach to take to ensure any suspension period is reduced as much as possible.
Offenders should also be aware that the ODMV may require them to install an In-Car Ignition Interlock Device in their vehicle before they can reinstate their license. The device is installed on an offenders vehicle and requires the user to blow into the device to test their BAC before the vehicle can be started. Additionally, offenders may also face criminal consequences, such as jail time, fines, and points assessed to their driving record.
An ODMV-certified provider must install, maintain, and remove the device. Offenders are typically responsible for the cost of the device, installation, and calibration, as well as any renewal fees. Offenders with an OVI are usually eligible to have the IID waived or shortened if they enroll in an alcohol/drug safety program that has been approved for the health program.
It is important to understand the laws in Ohio concerning DUIs to ensure you or your loved ones know the risks that may come with such a charge. You should be aware that you may be facing a license suspension, even with the successful completion of any alcohol/drug safety program offered by the state. By being educated on the laws, you can take proactive steps to mitigate the license suspension as much as possible and be aware of the consequences that may come with a DUI.
At the end of the day, the penalties for DUI in Ohio can be harsh and greatly impact your life. It is best to speak with a lawyer who understands Ohio law and can help assess the charges against you or a loved one and then advise you of the best way to approach such a charge.
The repercussions of a DUI in Ohio may not end at the loss of your license. Insurance rates will likely increase, and the offense will remain on your record for a long period of time. Additionally, potential employers may view your record during a background check, and even with the completion of any mandated alcohol/drug safety program, the offense may appear on public records’ searches, including those conducted by state or federal background check services.
Another consequence to consider is the possibility of having your license revoked, meaning it cannot be reinstated–ever. If you are caught driving on an expired or suspended license, the ODMV has the authority to permanently revoke the license. This is why speaking with an experienced attorney is so critical–they can advise you on the best steps to take to prevent your license from being permanently revoked.
Moreover, if you are convicted of a second DUI within a six-year period, the court may impose harsher penalties, such as an additional license suspension of one to five years and more jail time. Further, law enforcement may confiscate your vehicle, and you may be required to take additional drug and alcohol classes.
It is also important to understand that while a criminal attorney may be able to reduce the charges against you, you may still have to accept or at least accept an abridged form of a pilot or license suspension. In such a case, the amount of time spent in suspension may be lessened and some of the potential fines associated with the DUI may be reduced.
The bottom line is that DUIs in Ohio are serious offenses, and punishment must be taken seriously. Those caught driving while impaired should take the necessary steps to ensure they not only receive proper legal support to avoid or reduce their license suspension, but also take the opportunity to educate themselves on the issues surrounding DUIs and alcohol consumption. That way, if they ever find themselves in the same situation again, they can take a different approach and perhaps avoid a DUI altogether.