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What are the DUI Laws in Oklahoma?

Trying to tackle a DUI case on your own is short of impossible. Between countless legal forms, contacting police and setting up insurance claims, you may find yourself with your hands tied. Let a reputable DUI lawyer take on the burden and help you win your case. You may be entitled to thousands of dollars in benefits that you might not even be aware of. Call today to see how a top DUI lawyer in Oklahoma can spearhead your case.

In the state of Oklahoma, it is illegal to drive with a blood alcohol content (BAC) level of .08 percent or higher. This limit is different for both commercial vehicle drivers and minors (persons under the age of 21). For commercial drivers, it is illegal to operate a vehicle with a BAC at or above .04 percent. For minors, Oklahoma has imposed a Zero Tolerance rule which states that it is illegal for a minor to drive with any amount of alcohol in the blood stream.

In addition to exceeding the minimum BAC level, a motorist in Oklahoma can be arrested for DUI if they appear intoxicated, regardless of BAC. An officer can arrest a driver if they exhibit signs of impairment, such as failing a field sobriety test, erratic driving patterns or even if they smell of alcohol.

In Oklahoma, a DUI arrest will lead to two separate cases. The first is a criminal case in which various punishments such as jail time, alcohol treatment programs and fines will be determined and imposed. The second is a civil action case regarding the motorist’s driving privileges. The motorist will be required to have a hearing with the Department of Public Safety (DPS) to determine the period of suspension for the DUI offender’s driver’s license.

Oklahoma has very strict laws regarding alcohol and drug consumption. The state requires that all DUI offenders install an interlock ignition device, even on a first offense. An ignition interlock device is a form of breathalyzer test that will prevent a vehicle from starting unless the motorist blows a sober breath sample into the device.

Oklahoma APC and DWI Laws

In addition to DUI laws, the state of Oklahoma also has what are called APC and DWI laws. APC, or “Actual Physical Control” of a vehicle laws can lead to an arrest even if the person was not physically driving. The vehicle may be parked without keys in the ignition but if the vehicle “can be driven,” it is enough to lead to an arrest.

DWI, or “Driving While Impaired,” laws state that a driver can be arrested with a BAC level below .08 percent and will be subject to penalties, although much less severe than for actual DUIs.

Punishment for DUI Offenders in Oklahoma

Oklahoma takes DUI charges very seriously. Penalties increase if there were minors in the car at the time of arrest, if a motorist’s BAC level exceeded .08 percent and if a motorist has had previous DUI convictions. Drivers that are found guilty of DUI in Oklahoma will incur the following punishments:

1st DUI Conviction

• Imprisonment from 10 days to 1 year
o Up to 4 years if child under 18 was in vehicle
• Fine up to $1,000
o $2,000 if child under 18 was in vehicle
• Driver’s license suspended 30 days
• Must participate in alcohol/drug assessment and treatment
• Miscellaneous DUI fees of $300 minimum
• Mandatory ignition interlock device

2nd DUI Conviction

• Felony (if within 10 years of previous DUI)
• Imprisonment from 1 to 5 years
o Up to 4 years if child under 18 was in vehicle
• Fine up to $2,500
o $5,000 if child under 18 was in vehicle
• Driver’s license suspended 6 months
• Must participate in alcohol/drug assessment and treatment
• Miscellaneous DUI fees of $450 minimum
• Mandatory ignition interlock device

3rd DUI Conviction (and subsequent)

• Felony
• Imprisonment from 1 to 20 years
• Fine up to $10,000
• Driver’s license suspended 1 year
• Must participate in alcohol/drug assessment and treatment
• Miscellaneous DUI fees of $450 minimum
• Mandatory ignition interlock device
• Community service 480 hours
• One year supervision and periodic alcohol/drug testing

Implied Consent Laws in Oklahoma

the state of Oklahoma has implied consent laws in place, which require a driver to submit to a chemical test to determine intoxication. The test can be either of the motorist’s blood, urine or breath and will evaluate both drug and alcohol consumption. Any driver that refuses to submit to testing will have their license seized immediately and be required to attend a court hearing regarding the fate of their license.

The state will then review the motorist’s record to determine the length of the driver’s license suspension. Motorists may have their license suspended anywhere from180 days to 3 years, even for the first refusal and even if the motorist DID NOT consume alcohol or drugs. For this reason, it is in the motorist’s best interest to submit to the test.

How to Fight a DUI Charge in Oklahoma

If you have been arrested for DUI, you should contact an Oklahoma DUI lawyer immediately for help. Motorists in Oklahoma only have 15 days from the time of arrest to request a hearing in order to prevent their license from being suspended. Trust that a top DUI attorney in Oklahoma will stop your license from getting suspended as well as will ensure that your other charges are significantly lowered or wiped clean altogether.

DUI lawyers work hard to make sure your case ends with the best possible outcome. They will speak to police and witnesses, request a plea bargain, represent you in court and fight for your rights. Call today to schedule a meeting with an elite Oklahoma DUI attorney today.