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North Carolina DUI Laws


North Carolina DUI Laws is one of these states that impose DUI laws that are tough . While most states have a clear, simple, and fair sentence scheme, North Carolina’s has a lot of factors to consider in determining the appropriate charge once you are arrested for DUI.

The state even has a campaign called “Booze it and lose it” that signifies the manner in which law enforcement is handed out to drinking and driving suspects.

The first of two ways in which you can be arrested for DUI is the traditional way. This means that if the law enforcer is suspicious of the way you are driving your vehicle, you can be requested to pull over. There is no required blood alcohol content limit in this instance because it will be the law enforcer who will determine your intoxication based on your physical appearance and driving pattern.

The second way is the per se law in which a BAC of 0.08% or more will merit a DUI arrest. For drivers who are under 21, no alcohol should be consumed before driving. For commercial vehicle drivers, a BAC of 0.04% or more will trigger a DUI arrest.

Once you are arrested, it is imperative that you get yourself the best DUI defense lawyer in the state to assist you during the whole proceeding because the state employs a very complex sentencing structure. There are aggravating and mitigating factors that can affect your sentence and the state employs five levels of punishment.

A partial list of the frequency offense and corresponding sanctions is presented:

1. First DWI conviction – mandatory suspension of driver’s license for 1 year and driver is subject to substance abuse assessment and treatment;
2. Second DWI conviction – suspension of driver’s license for 4 years if the previous offense was committed within 3 years; requesting a restoration of driver’s license requires an ignition interlock device; drive is subject to substance abuse assessment and treatment;
3. Third DWI conviction – this is now considered a class F felony habitual impaired driving if previous offenses occurred within 10 years; a minimum jail time of 12 months; with regard to license suspension, if the last offense was committed within a 5-year period, permanent revocation is imposed. However, if you are granted license restoration, an ignition interlock device is required for 7 years; possible vehicle forfeiture; submit to a substance abuse assessment and treatment; and
4. Fourth DWI conviction – a minimum of 12 months jail time, license suspension is imposed if the last three offenses committed were within the last 7 years; almost all the same penalties and sanctions of the third offense apply to the fourth offense.

North Carolina DUI Laws are complicated and to understand fully the governing rules of a DWI offense, hire a skilled lawyer.