Second DUI Offense in Florida

Sometimes the unthinkable can happen, and a person with a DUI conviction on their record is arrested again for a second DUI. Being charged with a second DUI offense is a serious matter that demands immediate attention. While any Florida DUI conviction has steep penalties, the severity of the penalties for a second DUI will vary depending on how much time has passed since the first conviction.

The consequences of a second DUI conviction can be significantly harsher to include increased fines, mandatory jail time, longer periods of  license suspension, plus the mandatory placement of an ignition interlock device (IID) on their vehicle. To ensure your rights are protected, consider hiring a South Florida defense attorney. An attorney can help you effectively fight the charges against you.

Palm Beach County DUI Attorney

If you are being charged with a DUI offense in South Florida, prioritize finding a defense attorney who can represent you and fight your charges. Ian Goldstein Law helps those who need defending in Palm Beach County and the surrounding South Florida areas. Call our office today at (561) 600-0950 to receive a free consultation.

Defining DUI

Driving under the influence (DUI) is the criminal offense of operating a vehicle or being considered in actual physical control of a vehicle when a person has consumed alcohol or unlawful substances to the point where either:

  • The defendant has a breath-alcohol or blood alcohol content (BAC) of 0.08 or above; or
  • The defendant’s normal faculties were impaired due to the consumption of alcohol or a controlled substance.

Criminal Penalties for Second DUI Offense

Getting arrested for a second DUI offense is considered a special misdemeanor in Florida. The exact penalties will be dependent upon the specific circumstances of the alleged second DUI offense, and how long the second arrest occurred after the first DUI conviction.

Florida Statute Section 316.193 lists the following penalties for a second DUI conviction:

  • Up to nine months of imprisonment;
  • Up to twelve months of probation;
  • Driver’s license revocation between six to twelve months;
  • Fines between $1,000 and up to $2,000;
  • Vehicle impounded for 90 days;
  • Mandatory ignition interlock device (IID) on all vehicles owned, leased, or routinely used by the defendant for at least one year;
  • 50 hours of completed community service;
  • Advanced DUI school including a psychosocial evaluation to determine if substance abuse treatment is required; and
  • Completed substance abuse treatment if recommended.

Enhanced Penalties for Second DUI Offense

Florida law provides enhanced penalties to a DUI defendant who either:

  • Has a breath-alcohol or blood-alcohol content of 0.15 or higher; or
  • Had a minor present in the vehicle at the time of the DUI arrest.

If convicted of a second DUI that meets the above circumstances, the defendant will face the following enhanced penalties:

  • Up to twelve months of imprisonment;
  • Fines between $2,000 and up to $4,000; and
  • Mandatory placement of an IID for at least two years.

Second DUI with Property Damage or Personal Injury

Under Florida Statute Section 316.193(3), a defendant who commits a second DUI offense and in the process contributes to causing property damage or personal injury can face more serious charges with harsher penalties:

  • Second DUI resulting in property damage: First-degree misdemeanor
  • Second DUI resulting in personal injury: Third-degree felony

A first-degree misdemeanor conviction for DUI with property damage carries up to $1,000 in fines and up to one year in jail.

A third-degree felony conviction for DUI with personal injury carries up to $5,000 in fines and up to five years in prison.

License Revocation for Second DUI Conviction

In addition to the standard DUI penalties, a defendant convicted of a DUI offense will have their driver’s license suspended for a specific amount of time.

If the second DUI offense happens within five years of the first DUI conviction, the second conviction will result in a license suspension of five years. The defendant may be eligible for a hardship or business purposes only license after one year.

If the second DUI offense happens five years or more after the first DUI conviction, the second conviction will result in a license suspension of at least 180 days up to one year.

Refusing a Breathalyzer for Second or Subsequent Time

Florida’s Implied Consent Law codified under Statute Section 316.1932 explains that any person who drives in the state consents to submit an approved physical or chemical test to determine their alcoholic content after a lawful DUI arrest.

While an individual can technically refuse a breath, blood or urine test (absent the presence of death or serious bodily injury), they should be aware of the consequences of doing so:

First refusal: License suspension for 12 months

Second or subsequent refusal: License suspension for 18 months plus an additinoal first-degree misdemeanor charge with penalties including up to $1,000 in fines and up to one year in jail.

Defenses to a Second DUI

Getting charged with a second DUI is guaranteed to be both stressful and worrisome. By working with an experienced South Florida defense attorney, you can strategize and determine if any of the following defenses can be applied to fight your DUI charge:

  • Illegal traffic stops by law enforcement;
  • Improper field sobriety exercises;
  • Insufficient probable cause; or
  • Inadmissible breathalyzer, blood or urine results.

Contact Ian Goldstein Law for a free consultation regarding your case to create a strong defense plan.

Contact a South Florida DUI Defense Attorney

Facing any criminal charge is bound to result in stress, anxiety, and fear about the future. Since the state of Florida takes a harsh stance against drunk driving, getting convicted of a DUI has the potential to negatively impact your life. A second conviction comes with even harsher penalties, including losing the ability to drive for an extended period. To avoid paying fines, facing a jail or prison senten ce, or any of the other harsh DUI penalties, you need an attorney that is going to fight for you.

Ian Goldstein Law has both knowledge and experience regarding DUI cases. Our attorneys will collaborate with you to build a strong defense and win back your future. To receive a free consultation, contact us today at (561) 600-0950. We represent those in need of defense in Palm Beach County and the surrounding South Florida area.