Court

Court Suspensions
In addition to the suspension that you will receive from the DHSMV, if convicted of a DUI, you also will have your license suspended. Depending on if it is your first, second, third, or subsequent conviction, you may be eligible to receive a hardship drivers license during the course of the suspension.

Aside from a possible administrative hearing that reviews the circumstances surrounding your arrest to see if your license should be administratively suspended (as opposed to suspended by the Court), you must generally go to court where a jury or judge will decide your fate. In any Florida criminal case, including DWI’s, you have the right to a jury trial, but once convicted, it is up to the judge what punishment you will receive.

 

Generally, for each prior conviction of DWI within the previous 5-10 years, the punishment will become progressively severe, and these may also be mandatory minimum sentences. If found guilty, most courts will:

First DUI Conviction                                                    2nd DUI Conviction within 5 years of a prior conviction.

Second DUI Conviction within 5 years                   2nd DUI Conviction, 5 years after your prior conviction.

Third DUI Conviction within 10 years                     3rd DUI Conviction within 10 years

TDUI Manslaughter Conviction                                3rd DUI conviction, 10 years after your prior conviction.
If you were convicted of your first DUI you must:

  1. Apply for a hardship license.
  2. Have a traffic search from your resident county court when you sit for a hardship license.
  3. You must have COMPLETED DUI school.

If this was your second DUI conviction within 5 years you must:

  1. Apply for a hardship license.
  2. Have a traffic search from your resident county court.
  3. You must serve one year of the revocation.
  4. You must have COMPLETED DUI school and enrolled in DUI Special Supervision Services Program.
  5. You must not have consumed any alcohol or drugs, or driven a motor vehicle, for one year prior to the reinstatement.

If this was your third conviction within 10 years you must:

  1. Apply for a hardship license.
  2. Have a traffic search from your resident county court.
  3. You must serve two years of the revocation.
  4. You must have not consumed any alcohol or drugs, or driven a motor vehicle, for a period of one year prior to reinstatement.
  5. You must have COMPLETED DUI school and enrolled in DUI Special Supervision Services Program.

If you were convicted of a DUI Manslaughter then you must:

  1. Apply for a hardship.
  2. Have a traffic search from your resident county court.
  3. Have a traffic crash report.
  4. You must not have any prior DUI convictions.
  5. You must serve the first five years of the revocation. If you were incarcerated for any time, the five years begins upon the release of incarceration.
  6. You must have COMPLETED DUI school and enrolled in a DUI Special Supervision Services Program.
  7. You must have no arrests for drug-related offenses during the five years prior to filing an application for reinstatement.
  8. You must not have driven a motor vehicle without a license for at least five years prior to the hearing.
  9. You must not consume alcohol or drugs for at least five years prior to the hearing.

If you have already been convicted of a prior DUI, the penalties that you may face will be greater and may include:
2nd DUI Conviction within 5 years of a prior conviction

  1. Minimum of $500 of fines for a BAL under .20, or a minimum of $1,000 of fines for a BAL over .20
  2. Mandatory imprisonment of 10 days, with a maximum imprisonment of 9 months if your BAL was under .20 or 12 months if your BAL was higher than .20
  3. Impoundment or immobilization of your vehicle 30 days.
  4. A minimum of a 5 year license revocation, with hardship reinstatement eligibility after one year.

2nd DUI Conviction, 5 years after your prior conviction

  1. Minimum of $500 of fines for a BAL under .20, or a minimum of $1,000 of fines for a BAL over .20
  2. Maximum imprisonment of 9 months if your BAL was under .20 or 12 months if your BAL was higher than .20
  3. Impoundment or immobilization of your vehicle.
  4. Minimum drivers license revocation of 180 days.

3rd DUI Conviction within 10 years

  1. Maximum of $5,000 of fines, and if your BAL is higher than .20 a minimum of $2000
  2. Mandatory imprisonment of 30 days.
  3. Impoundment or immobilization of your vehicle for 90 days.
  4. Minimum of 10 years driver’s license revocation, with hardship eligibility after 2 years.

3rd DUI conviction, 10 years after your prior conviction

  1. Minimum of $1,000 of fines with a BAL under .20 and a minimum of $2,000 if your BAL is over .20
  2. Maximum imprisonment of 12 months.
  3. Impoundment or immobilization of your vehicle.
  4. Minimum of 5 years driver’s license revocation, with hardship eligibility after 1 year.

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