FAQ - DUI / OVI Penalties (Part 1)

Q: What are the penalties for a DUI/OVI in Central Ohio?
A:
The sentence for a DUI/OVI conviction in Central Ohio always consists of jail time, which can range from 3 days for a first offense to 5 years for multiple offenses. In addition, a conviction carries a license suspension of at least one year for a first offense and up to life for multiple offenses. Fines will range between $375 for a first offense to $10, 500 for multiple offenses, in addition to court costs, points on your license, and a fee to reinstate your license. A sentence for a DUI/OVI conviction may also include yellow license plates, an ignition interlock device, vehicle immobilization or forfeiture, secure continuous remote alcohol monitoring (S.C.R.A.M.), alcohol/drug treatment, and probation.

Q: Other than criminal penalties, are there any other consequences for a DUI/OVI conviction?
A:
Secondary consequences to a DUI/OVI conviction can be more devastating than a court sentence. Secondary consequences can impact everyday life for many years. In addition to the criminal penalties that result from a conviction, the following consequences may occur: 1) significant costs increases for auto and health insurance premiums and coverage; 2) a public record of the conviction that cannot be sealed or expunged, which may impact present and future employment; 3) negative impact upon immigration status; 5) prohibition from foreign travel; and 6) consequences with athletic eligibility, professional licenses, and the military acceptance and/or discipline.

Q: Is it possible to get a DUI/OVI charge reduced or dismissed?
A:
An individual charged with DUI/OVI does not have to plead guilty. It is possible to get DUI/OVI charges reduced to a lesser charge, or even dismissed in some cases. In order to get a DUI/OVI charge reduced or dismissed, an individual should retain an attorney with a practice focused on DUI/OVI. A DUI/OVI attorney should have expertise in field sobriety tests, breath tests, blood tests, urine tests, DUI / OVI investigations and the DUI/OVI court process.

Q: What is a Driver Intervention Program?
A:
A driver intervention program (DIP) is a 72-hour residential program that focuses on educating individuals about the effects of alcohol and drug use. These programs are designed to help reduce the risk of future alcohol and drug arrests. DIPs are usually held at hotels and cost approximately $450. Typically, DIPs are weekend programs requiring participants “check-in” on Thursday evening and leave on Sunday evening. Throughout the weekend, participants will be assessed for alcohol and drug counseling and attend presentations on alcohol, drugs, health, and driving.

Q: How is a Driver Intervention Program used in a DUI/OVI case?
A:
Individuals convicted of a first offense DUI/OVI that does not involve a “High Test” (BAC of .170 or more), face a minimum mandatory jail sentence of 3 days. However, in lieu of spending 3 days in jail, the court may allow the individual to complete a 72-hour driver intervention program. If the first offense involves a High Test, which carries a minimum jail sentence of 6 days, the court can substitute 3 of the 6 days in a driver intervention program. The remaining 3 days must be served in jail.