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Understanding Arizona DUI Penalties

Every year, 1.5 million people are arrested in the US for driving while impaired. As a zero-tolerance state, Arizona has some of the strictest laws when it comes to DUIs. The idea is that, by having harsher penalties for impaired driving, people will be less inclined to get behind the wheel while under the influence.

But what if you, or someone you know, has already been arrested and charged with an Arizona DUI? Keep reading to learn what exactly the penalties for impaired driving look like for the first, second, and third offenses in Arizona.

What Does an Arizona DUI Look Like?

Arizona’s DUI laws are stringent, especially when it comes to underage drinking.

As a zero-tolerance state, police officers have the right to charge you with a DUI if you are acting impaired but your BAC (blood alcohol content) is below .08.

Refusal to take a blood or breath BAC test violates Arizona’s implied consent laws, which states that all drivers who are arrested for a

DUI are required to submit to testing or face one-two years of license suspension.

Gordon Thompson DUI & Criminal Attorney is here to help you understand the particulars of your DUI charge whether it’s a first, second, or third offense.

First Offense

Even though it’s your first time being charged, your first DUI offense will land you in jail for at least 24 hours. Jail time can last up to 10 days and there’s $250 base fine for impaired driving.

Your license will be suspended for any amount of time between 90 days and one full year. In addition, you will likely be assigned community
service hours and required to complete them.

Second Offense

The penalties start to really increase if it’s your second offense.

You’ll be in jail for at least 30-90 days and you’ll be charged a $500 base fine. Your license will be suspended for one year. If this is a second-offense aggravated DUI because the penalties from the first arrest were still in place, the DUI jumps from being a misdemeanor to a felony.

In the event of a felony charge, jail time increases to around four and a half years, and the fine jumps up into the thousands.

Third Offense

After your third offense, you’ll be in jail for at least four months. The base fine is $750, but there’s a good chance the amount you’ll be charged will be in the thousands. Like your second offense, your license will be suspended for one year.

It’s important to note that in all cases, whether it’s your first or third offense, an interlock ignition device is required to be installed on your vehicle in order for it to operate. This personal breathalyzer is attached to your car and will test your BAC before the vehicle will start.

Defend Yourself

Penalties from DUIs are extreme, especially in Arizona. That’s why it’s important to make sure that you aren’t facing an Arizona DUI charge without legal counsel. Even if it’s just your first offense, having an attorney present will ensure that you are being represented fairly.