DUI convictions have a wide range of penalties. Everyone accused of a DUI is at risk of:
- Jail time,
- Fines, fees and court costs,
- Loss of driver license,
- Installing the ignition interlock device,
- Paying high automobile insurance rates,
- Attendance at a DUI Victim’s Panel,
- Alcohol/drug testing and treatment, and
- Up to five years probation.
After a conviction for any crime the judge may impose up to the maximum statutory penalty. For a misdemeanor DUI in Washington State the maximum penalty is 364 days in jail and a $5,000 fine. The Washington State Court publishes a grid showing the mandatory minimum penalties for the different DUI offense levels.
A first offense DUI conviction carries mandatory minimum sentence of one day in jail and a fine of just under $1,000.00. This jail sentence can be converted to electronic home monitoring. Judges often add probation fees and other court costs to the fine so the total court bill is usually closer to $2,500.00.
After a first offense DUI conviction the Washington State Department of Licensing (DOL) is required to suspend your driver’s license for at least 90 days. When you’re ready to drive again, you’ll be required to install the ignition interlock device for at least 12 months and carry SR-22 insurance for three years. Again, these are mandatory penalties that are required by law after a DUI conviction.
Lastly, as part of your probation the judge will order you to obtain an alcohol/drug evaluation, complete the treatment recommended in the evaluation and attend the DUI Victim’s Impact Panel (VIP). These classes can range from a one day educational seminar to a two year outpatient treatment program to an inpatient residential treatment program.
Remember that we’re talking about mandatory minimum penalties for an actual DUI conviction. If your attorney can avoid a conviction for a DUI, then you might be able to avoid some of these mandatory penalties. Regardless of the offense level you’re facing you should consult with an experienced DUI attorney who can guide you through the specifics of your case. Contact Cooney Law Offices today. We can help!