2nd DUI in Florida

2nd DUI Florida

The state of Florida has severe penalties for repeat offenses of driving under the influence (DUI). In certain circumstances, the penalty for a second DUI in Florida can include jail time, but it depends on factors including blood alcohol level, having a minor in the vehicle, and length of time between convictions.

Florida DUI laws are there to keep roads and highways safe, and penalties increase in severity to deter repeat offenders. People who repeatedly drive while drunk run an extremely high risk of accidents that cause death and injury as well as property damage. This is why Florida imposes fines and jail time for a DUI conviction that increases with a second DUI, third DUI, or more.

It is often possible to avoid jail time for a second DUI in Florida if you are arrested, but it is important to understand how the penalties are structured under the law. The following information can help you better understand how a conviction may lead to jail time and how the right legal representation can help you avoid it.

Penalties Under Law for 2nd DUI in Florida

A DUI in Florida is defined as operating a motor vehicle or other vehicle above the legal blood alcohol limit of .08. Under Florida Statutes, section 316.193, penalties for a second DUI conviction consist of:

  • A fine of no less than $1,000, but no more than $2,000
  • A fine of no less than $2,000, but no more than $4,000, if blood alcohol level was above .15, or if there was a minor in the vehicle
  • Imprisonment not to exceed nine months, or 12 months for a blood alcohol level above .15 or having a minor in the car
  • Mandatory imprisonment of at least 10 days, with at least 48 hours of consecutive confinement, if the second conviction was within five years of a prior conviction
  • License revocation of 180 days if more than five years from the first offense. Minimum license revocation of five years if it is less than five years since the first offense. There may be eligibility for hardship license reinstatement after one year.

As you can see, a major contributor to the degree of the penalties for being convicted of a second DUI in Florida, including jail time, is the length of time between convictions.

Avoiding Jail Time After 2nd DUI in Florida and How a Lawyer Can Help

It is possible to avoid jail time after a second DUI conviction, but it is more difficult than the first. Being sentenced to jail time after a second DUI in Florida depends on a range of factors and can vary on almost a case-by-case basis. These include:

  • Length of time between convictions, or the “look-back period”
  • Previous arrest and criminal record
  • Whether there was property damage, injury, or manslaughter
  • Other circumstances of the arrest, including administration of a field sobriety test, submitting to a breathalyzer
  • Prerogative and attitude of the judge

Good legal representation can also have an impact on avoiding jail time after a second DUI offense in Florida. Having experienced, knowledgeable attorneys and legal support is critical to navigating the complexities of Florida DUI penalties. If you’ve been previously convicted of a DUI, a second DUI arrest does not automatically mean a second conviction.

DUI defense attorneys with the right experience know the restrictions and steps that law enforcement is bound to, as well as your rights under the law. In many cases, police officers may respond differently to traffic stops for drivers with a previous DUI conviction. For example, it may affect how a field sobriety test is administered. In any second DUI defense case, your lawyer should work to fully protect your rights and make sure you receive a fair outcome.

Clark Hartpence Law attorney Jeremy Clark has an extensive background in DUI defense and worked as a public defender in the Sixth Judicial Circuit. With our team’s comprehensive experience, we know how to argue cases and respond to the prosecution for 2nd DUI cases.

Contact us today at (855) 680-4911 for your free consultation. A DUI arrest, even a second one, does not have to result in jail time. We’ll work hard to achieve a fair outcome for your case.

Disclaimer: This blog is for informational purposes only and does not create an attorney/client relationship.