Georgia laws work to combat against drunk drivers and will require certain consequences to be issued when a person is caught driving while intoxicated. But, under what circumstances can a person be arrested for DUI and charged for the crime? Below, we share with you when an officer has a justifiable reason to arrest you for DUI and the potential penalties you might be up against.

  1. You must be in control of a vehicle. If you are in the driver’s seat of a vehicle and have the ability to maneuver the car, you can be charged with DUI. This means an officer has the right to arrest you for DUI if you are driving the vehicle or if you are sitting in the driver’s seat. Your vehicle doesn’t exactly have to be in operation in order for you to be charged with DUI in the state of Georgia. 
  1. Your blood-alcohol concentration (BAC) level is above the legal limit. The BAC level is the percentage of blood that is concentrated with alcohol at the time a field sobriety test is rendered. In most instances when a person is pulled over and suspected of drunk or drugged driving, an officer will ask that you submit to a breathalyzer test, but you may also be asked to provide a blood or urine sample after being taken into police custody. In the state of Georgia, if a DUI test is given and your BAC level comes back at 0.08% or higher and you are over the age of 21, you will be charged with DUI. Something to be mindful of is that your age and occupation both play a role in determining the legal limits in terms of how much alcohol can be present in your system.


This means that if you are a commercial driver, your BAC level cannot be 0.04% or higher and if you are under the age of 21, it cannot be 0.02% or higher. One thing you should be cognizant of is that even if your BAC level registers lower than the legal limit, an officer can still arrest you for DUI if you are considered to be a risk to yourself, are found to be recklessly driving, or were showing signs of impairment.

Penalties for DUI in Georgia

If you are charged with DUI and it is your first offense, below are some of the penalties you are looking at:

  • A possible jail sentence of up to one year
  • A fine that ranges from $300 to $1,000
  • License suspension of up to one year
  • A minimum of 40 hours of community service
  • A $210 license reinstatement fee

[Source: Governor’s Office of Highway Safety in Georgia].

What to do if you are arrested for DUI in Macon, GA?

The most important thing for you to do right now is enlist the help of a reliable and dedicated DUI defense attorney. James W. Davis & Associates provides free consultations to those who are facing a drunk driving charge in the city of Macon and will be there to represent you in the event you choose to hire a DUI lawyer. To contact this firm, simply call 478-742-1440 to speak with someone who is ready to help you through this unfortunate time.