Driving Under the Influence of Alcohol (DUI Alcohol)
A person is charged with a DUI if they are driving under the influence of liquor, and has a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08 or more while or within two hours of driving or being in actual physical control of a vehicle.
DUI crimes can be charged as either misdemeanors or felonies, meaning the potential penalties will differ significantly based on the circumstances of the case.
A first time DUI conviction in Arizona will result in a sentence of 24 hours to 10 days of jail time, a minimum $250 fine, and a license suspension between 90 and 360 days. Your insurance premium will likely go up, and you may be required to go through alcohol screening and counselling at your own expense.
An extreme DUI is charged when a person has a blood alcohol content (BAC) higher than 0.15 while or within two hours of driving or being in actual physical control of a vehicle.
In Arizona, an Extreme DUI is a criminal misdemeanor.
A first time Extreme DUI conviction will result in a $900 fine PLUS another $250 for a "DUI Assessment" PLUS a $1250 extreme DUI assessment. Your driver’s license will be revoked for 1 year. You will also have to install (at your expense) an interlock ignition device in all of your vehicles. The vehicle will not start unless you blow into the device and prove that you have not consumed any alcohol.
An aggravated DUI is a criminal DUI charged when someone is driving under the influence and:
the new DUI is charged while a child under 15 years-old was in the car (a class 6 felony)
the new DUI is charged and the person has two or more prior DUIs within 7 years (a class 4 felony);
the new DUI is charged while your license was suspended or revoked (a class 4 felony); and
the new DUI is charged while you had a court-ordered ignition interlock device (a class 4 felony).
For any class 4 aggravated DUI, the minimum sentence is 4 months in prison, up to $4000 in fines, a $250 DUI assessment fee, probation-mandated counselling, 3 years’ suspended license, and 24 months of a court-ordered ignition interlock device installed on your vehicle at your expense. If you have no prior felony offenses, the maximum penalty for a class 6 felony is 2 years in prison.
The minimum sentence for the class 6 aggravated DUI is six months in jail and up to $2500 in fees, with 12 months of mandatory counseling, revocation of your license, and 12 months of a court-ordered ignition interlock device installed on your vehicle at your expense. Without priors, a class 4 felony carries a maximum incarceration term of 3.75 years in prison. The maximum fine for both class 6 and class 4 felonies is $150,000 plus surcharge.
Any DUI charge may result in the immediate suspension of your license unless you request a hearing with the Arizona Depart of Transportation (Department of Motor Vehicles) within 15 days of your arrest. Our office handles ADOT/DMV hearings for DUI clients free of charge, and in all alcohol-related DUI cases except aggravated DUIs, we can typically delay or reduce your DUI-related suspension.
A Note on Sentencing
Likely outcomes may vary depending upon the facts of the case, the judge, the prosecutor, and other factors. Sentences can increase in severity with a record of prior offenses.
Contact Lee Phillips
If you are interested in retaining our office to represent you in your DUI case, or would like more information, feel free to contact us. If your DUI offense is not listed above, and you have questions about your specific case, please call our office for a free 30-minute consultation with one of our legal consultants.
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