A person is deemed as illegally driving under the influence when they are operating a motor vehicle while feeling the effects of alcohol, drugs, or other intoxicants. This is most commonly associated with alcohol but can actually apply to many other things, as well.
Driving Under the Influence (DUI) is one of the more common misdemeanors, but one that can have far-reaching implications for an individual. In many places, losing your license can have long-lasting effects on your ability to travel, your eligibility for employment, and a variety of other factors. Understanding all the rules, regulations, and potential penalties around these charges in your state is important. Don’t take any DUI charge lightly, but make sure to understand how these charges work in the state and make sure to get skilled & experienced legal representation.
State law in South Carolina legally defines “under the influence” as a person being impaired to the point where a driver’s awareness and faculties are impaired to the point where they should not be driving.
State law in Virginia defines “driving while intoxicated” (DWI) as being under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
The details behind each can actually vary a bit from state to state, and that will be covered under the state overview sections down below.
In the state of South Carolina, any driver who is impaired by alcohol, drugs, or any type of intoxicant is guilty of DUI. Even if the person doesn’t test for anything, showing any sign of impairment to the police officer is enough to be arrested. Even if the driver doesn’t appear impaired at all, under state law any driver who tests with a blood alcohol content (BAC) of 0.08% or more is guilty of “per se DUI.”
1st Offense: $400 to $1,000 in fines and 2 days to 1 year in jail
2nd Offense: $2,100 to $6,500 in fines and 5 days to 3 years in jail
3rd+ Offense: $3,800 to $10,000 in fines and 60 days to 5 years in jail
DUI arrests in other states count towards this number. Treatment in the Alcohol and Drug Safety Action Program is required after every conviction, and first-time offenders can do community service in lieu of two days in jail.
1st Offense: 6-month license suspension, limited provisional license available in some circumstances
2nd Offense: 2 years with an ignition interlock device (IID) program
3rd Offense: 3 to 4 years with IID program
Drivers whose BAC is 0.15% or more will add a one-, two-, or three-month suspension penalty depending on how many DUI convictions you have had.
Virginia actually goes under the acronym DWI as opposed to DUI, but it is basically the same thing. A DWI can occur because of intoxication of any kind, or any blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08%. However, if a driver is under the legal drinking age of 21 then they are an automatic DWI with any percentage of alcohol.
1st Offense: $250 to $2,500 in fines and up to 12 months in jail
2nd Offense: $500 to $2,500 in fines and 10 days to 12 months in jail
3rd Offense: $1,000 to $2,500 in fines and 90 days to 5 years in jail
1st Offense: 1 year & 6-month minimum IID
2nd Offense: 3 years & 6-month minimum IID
3rd Offense: Indefinite suspension & 6-month minimum IID
With a talented lawyer with experience in DUI cases from our firm, your future can look a lot brighter. In the event that you are in our area, contact the Haley Law Firm, LLC, today, and rest assured that you have a group of committed experts who will secure your rights.