Louisiana Drunk Driving Fines & Penalties
A Louisiana DUI (Driving Under the Influence) is also called a DWI (Driving While under the Influence). There is no difference between dui and dwi; you face the possibility of jail time, fines, the loss of your driver's license, community service, and participation in counseling and educational programs either way. And you can face dui charges if you are under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs.
First Offense DWI in Louisiana
- First offense DWI in Louisiana results in administrative license suspension of ninety (90) days
- Reinstatement following first offense DWI is not contingent upon use of ignition interlock device in Louisiana, but may require attendance and completion of alcohol/substance abuse assessment and education program.
- Convictions of first offense DWI in Louisiana have a mandatory minimum period of incarceration of two (2) days, with potential to serve out this mandatory sentence in the form of community service. However, in first offense cases, maximum penalty faced is six (6) months
- Fines for first offense convictions are between $300 and $1,000 in Louisiana, but the fine amount does not cover court costs, fees, and other surcharges incurred during completion of terms of sentence or during reinstatement of license
- Convictions of first offense DWI in Louisiana influence charges and sentencing in future DWI arrests for a period of ten (10) years
Second Offense DWI in Louisiana
Suspension of License. A second-offender’s driver license will be suspended for one year. An offender has 15 days after arrest to ask the court for a hearing to get a driver's license back.
IIDs. Some offenders may be able to get a restricted license to drive to work or school 30 days into the suspension. Those who are eligible will have to pay to have an ignition interlock device installed. In most cases, you will have to install this in your car anyway for six months, once you get your license back.
Insurance. A second-offender will also need to present an SR22 insurance policy, which must be kept for three years.
Driving School. A second-offender will be expected to attend driving school before getting a license back and will also need to endure a substance abuse evaluation to prove that the offender is not dependent on alcohol.
Community Service. A second-offender must perform up to 240 hours of community service in your Louisiana city.
Substance Abuse Program. A judge may require a second-offender to participate in a court-approved substance abuse program.
You have 15 days after your arrest to ask the court for a hearing to get your driver's license back. You may be able to at least avoid a suspension of your license this way. This will require the help of a lawyer, who can also assist you with the rest of your case. For example, you may be able to get the case thrown out if you have evidence that you were not under the influence at the time of the arrest.
Third Offense DWI in Louisiana
Administrative penalties for third offense DUI in Louisiana include the suspension of a driver’s license for 2 years. The state may also seize and sell your vehicle. Judicial penalties consist of:
- Felony conviction and all the loss of liberty that comes along with this type of conviction.
- Driving privileges suspended for up to four years.
- Sentenced to a mandatory 30 days in jail.
- Up to 10 years in prison.
- Possible home confinement.
- Must pay a fine of up to $2,000, in addition to court costs.
- Certain installation of an IID into your vehicle. A mandatory fine of $2,000
- Jail time of between 1 and 5 years – It is possible all but 6 months can be suspended
- Compulsory Substance Abuse Evaluation and Driver Improvement School
- Possible community service of 30, 8-hour days