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What Is A DUI?

Driving Under the Influence

A DUI can have lasting consequences that negatively affect your life and future plans.

What is a DUI and what does that mean for my future? These are likely the questions running through your mind if you have been charged with DUI in Colorado. It’s important to remember however that there is still hope. The Colorado DUI laws are strict, but they are not impossible to navigate. Don’t give up on yourself or your future. It is important to have a full understanding of your situation and your charges in order to determine the best course of action.

If you have been arrested…

Your FREEDOM is potentially at stake. A conviction can have a huge impact on your job, relationships, and your future. You need to act fast.

What Is a DUI in Colorado?

Under Colorado law, it is explicitly forbidden for anyone to drive a vehicle while they are under the influence of alcohol or drugs in a way that impairs their ability to safely operate the vehicle. The common abbreviations you will see are DUI (which stands for driving under the influence), DWAI (which stands for driving while ability impaired), and DUID (which stands for driving under the influence of drugs). 

Intoxication is most often proved via blood and breath tests. These determine the blood alcohol content (BAC) of the driver. Colorado has a strict BAC limit of .08, and operating a vehicle while over this limit is grounds for a DUI charge. DWAI charges can happen when BAC is above .05 but below .08. DUID can happen if you have drugs in your system including legal and/or prescription drugs! 

Colorado also has a DUI per se law. This means that even if you were driving perfectly, and in no way showing signs of intoxication or impairment so long as your BAC is above .08 then you could be charged with DUI per se. The penalties are generally the same for DUI and DUI per se charges, but these penalties will depend on the other factors involved, such as previous DUI convictions and whether someone was seriously injured or killed in the incident.

What is a DUI and what are the penalties in Colorado?

 

First DUI

In Colorado, a first-time DUI is generally a misdemeanor charge. The possible penalties include:

  • Fines of $600 – $1,000
  • License suspension of 9-months
  • 12 points on your license
  • Community service from 48-96 hours
  • Possible jail time from 5 days to a year
  • Probation – either supervised or unsupervised – from 12-24 months

 

 

Second DUI

In Colorado, a second offense DUI is also generally a misdemeanor charge. The possible penalties include:

  • Fines of $600 – $1,500 License suspension for 1-year
  • Ignition interlock requirement of 2-years
  • 12 points on your license
  • Community service of 48-120 hours
  • Mandatory jail time from 10 days to a year
  • Probation – usually supervised – from 12-24 months

 

 

Third DUI

In Colorado, a third offense DUI is also generally a misdemeanor charge. The possible penalties include:

  • Fines of $600 – $1,500
  • License suspension for 2-years
  • Ignition interlock requirement of 2-years
  • 12 points on your license
  • Community service for 48-120 hours
  • Mandatory jail time from 60 days to a year
  • Probation – usually supervised – from 12-24 months

 

 

Fourth and Subsequent DUI

In Colorado, a fourth (or subsequent) DUI is generally a felony charge. The possible penalties for a fourth or subsequent DUI include:

  • Fines anywhere from $2,000 – $500,000
  • A possible prison sentence of 2-6 years with a 3-year parole
  • Probation can be possible instead of prison, but it usually lasts 2- 5 years with anywhere from 90 days to 2 years in jail done first

 

 

DWAI

In Colorado, a first-time DWAI (driving while ability impaired) is generally a misdemeanor charge. The possible penalties for a first-time DWAI include:

  • Fines of $200 – $500
  • 8 points on your license
  • Community service of 24-48 hours
  • Possible jail time from 2 – 180 days

 

 

Should I hire a Colorado Springs DUI lawyer?

You should contact a Colorado Springs DUI lawyer immediately if you have been arrested or charged with DUI. In Colorado, you only have seven days from the date of your arrest to request an administrative hearing from the DMV if you choose a breath test or refuse testing, otherwise, your license will be automatically suspended. If you choose a blood test you only have seven days from the date of your blood results to request a hearing. You will want to have an experienced DUI lawyer or your side to make sure you have the best chance possible at keeping your license.

 

We understand that mistakes happen. When they do, you need an experienced Colorado Springs DUI attorney to defend you. We can analyze your circumstances and prepare a proper defense. We know what constitutes a DUI in Colorado. We also know the judges and prosecutors and will strive to get your most favorable outcome.

 

What is a DUI? If you are unsure and need help navigating the Colorado DUI laws, contact Right Law Group today for a free case evaluation. You may be able to keep your license. Call us now to get help. An experienced Colorado Springs DUI lawyer can help get you through this. Contact us today for a FREE consultation.

 

Frequently Asked Questions

No, a DUI does not have to ruin your life. A DUI will, of course, come with penalties, but with an experienced DUI attorney on your side, these penalties can be limited. You will be able to focus on your work, your family, and your life, while your attorney can help you navigate the intricacies of your DUI charges.

Colorado is very strict on DUI charges, including for first offenses. Depending on the facts of your case, a first-time DUI could come with any of the following penalties:

  • $600 – $1,000 in fines
  • 9-month license suspension
  • 12 points on your license
  • 48-96 hours of community service
  • Jail time from 5 days to a year
  • Probation up to 2 years

In Colorado, a DUI charge is for someone found driving a vehicle while under the influence, generally meaning they had a blood alcohol content (BAC) of .08 or higher, or under the influence of drugs. According to Colorado law, DUI charges are usually misdemeanors. Some DUI charges, however, are felonies. The most common DUI felonies in Colorado are due to it being the driver’s fourth or more DUI, or if there were significant bodily injuries or death involved.

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