DUI Offenders  DUI Consequences  DUI Laws

Tennessee DUI Laws


Tennessee DUI Laws have the same criteria as any other state in the country, but it imposes tougher and stricter punishments for DUI offenses. The state allows for two instances where you can be arrested for DUI.

If your driving is impaired because of alcohol or drug consumption, and if the arresting officer can prove this in court, then you are convicted of a DUI offense. If your blood alcohol content reaches 0.08% or more, you can also be arrested for DUI.

Upon arrest you will face a court case where the prosecution must prove beyond reasonable doubt that you are under the influence of alcohol or drugs while driving. If proven guilty, the court will impose the appropriate jail time, fines, court costs, and educational programs.

The following are the probable sanctions and punishments you will serve if convicted of a DUI offense:

1. First DUI offense – jail time of 48 hours up to 11 months, fines from $350 to $1,500, and license suspension of 1 year;
2. Second DUI offense – jail time of 45 days up to 1 year, fines from $600 to $3,500, and license suspension of 2 years; and
3. Third DUI offense – jail time of 120 days up to 1 year, fines from $1,100 to $10,000, and license suspension from 3 to 10 years.

In 2010, Tennessee Senate Bill 2965 was signed into law revising the provisions regarding ignition interlock devices, and drivers convicted of a DUI offense. After each license suspension from the first to the third offense, installation of ignition interlock device is required for convicts that have blood alcohol content of 0.15%, passenger under 18 in the vehicle at the time of arrest, and those who refused the implied consent law to take the exam.

Aside from the penalties listed above, there are also other sanctions that can be imposed. These penalties include vehicle seizure or forfeiture, additional child endangerment penalties, litter pick-up that can last from 3- to 8-hour shifts, undergo drug and treatment assessment, and attend an alcohol safety DUI school program.

If a fourth offense is committed within the 10-year period set by Tennessee DUI Laws, it will now be classified as a felony offense and carry more severe sanctions and more expensive penalties.

A restricted license will allow you to use your vehicle after your license has been suspended, but you have to prove that you are financially responsible. To prove this, you need to show a proof of insurance.