Fines & Penalties For A First Time DUI Offender In South Carolina

Over the years, South Carolina has been exerting effort to reduce the rate of DUI offenses in the state. For the last ten years, the fatality rate from alcohol-related accident has dropped by 40%. The website of Truslow & Truslow, Attorneys at Law reveals that DUI charges can have a huge impact on the life of the offender. DUI is associated with a wide range of fines and penalties. There are many aggravating factors that can affect the penalties.

Administrative Penalties

In South Caroina, a first time DUI offense carries a mandatory administrative license suspension of 6 months, unless contested in an
administrative hearing.

First time offenders who refuse to be subjected to implied consent laws carry a comparable mandatory license suspension of six months.
For the license to be reinstated, the plaintiff must successfully complete an alcohol/substance abuse assessment and counseling in limited circumstances. First time conviction may also entail a required installation of ignition interlock device upon reinstatement of driving privileges.

Criminal Penalties

Penalties for first time offenses are applied based on the blood alcohol content (BAC) of the offender. If the BAC of the offender is 0.08% to 0.10%, the offender may be subjected to mandatory incarceration of two days to a maximum of 30 days. If the BAC level is more than .10% to less than .16%, the offender may be subjected to imprisonment of at least 3 days to a maximum of 30 days but no more than 90 days.

In all cases, the offender can avoid being imprisoned by taking part in public service employment for first time offenders.

Fines for first time DUI offenders will range from $4,000 to $10,000 depending on the BAC. The fines does not include costs that will be incurred while completing the terms of sentence, process of license reinstatement, and additional fees and surcharges that will be assessed.

First offense DUI in the state will also have an impact on subsequent arrests and convictions for DUI for a period of 10 years.

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