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Georgia DUI Penalties

Serving Clients in Savannah and Throughout Chatham County

Have you or a loved one been charged with driving under the influence (DUI)? Georgia takes these cases very seriously, often leveling harsh penalties upon conviction. 

At The Law Office of Kurtis C. Bronston, LLC, our Savannah DUI lawyer defends clients against these charges. Our team is well-versed in how to minimize the consequences of a DUI. From first offenses to repeat offenders, we have advocated for clients in criminal court and during the Administrative License Suspension process. 

What Are the Penalties for a DUI in Georgia?

The penalties for a DUI will vary depending on whether it’s a first, second, or third offense. 

Blood alcohol content (BAC) will be the main concern—in Georgia, a BAC of .08% or higher is considered too impaired to drive. Those under 21 years of age can only have a BAC of 0.2%; commercial drivers are limited to a BAC of 0.4%.

First offense DUIS

  • 10 days to 12 months in jail

  • $300 to $1,000 in fines

  • 20 hours community service, if BAC was under .08%

  • 40 hours community service, if BAC was .08% or higher

Second offense DUIS (within 10 years of the first)

  • 90 days to 12 months in jail

  • $600 to $1,000 in fines

  • At least 30 days community service

Third offense DUIS (within 10 years)

  • 120 days to 12 months in jail

  • $1,000 to $5,000 in fines

  • At least 30 days community service

Contact us online for a free consultation with our DUI attorney in Savannah, call us today!

Is a DUI a Felony in GA?

A fourth DUI charge within a period of 10 years or less is considered a felony charge. 

These charges may also be brought in cases where:

  • The defendant allegedly tried to evade arrest

  • The defendant allegedly caused bodily harm or death to a person and/or fetus

If convicted of a felony DUI, you will face a significant period of time in jail or prison. 

What Happens to Your License When You Get a DUI in Georgia?

According to the Georgia Department of Driver Services (DDS), A DUI may result in license suspension. It may also cause you to lose your driver’s license. License penalties are among the most well-known consequences of a DUI. there are ways to reduce the time your license is suspended, as well as save yourself from license revocation. All this will depend on the facts of your case.

For example, your license will be suspended for 12 months if convicted of a first-offense DUI. In this case, You could apply to have your license reinstated early if:

At The Law Office of Kurtis C. Bronston, LLC, our criminal defense attorney in Savannah can guide you through the process of applying for early reinstatement. If you are at risk for losing your license, we will fight tooth and nail to prevent that from happening.

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Other DUI Penalties

There are other considerations regarding DUI charges in GA that will bring various penalties. Let’s dive into them here.

These other penalties include:

  • Probation After Jail Time - Georgia requires all DUI offenders to be put on probation for 12 months (1 year). Any time spent in jail may be deducted from this 12-month period. 

  • Substance Abuse Treatment - DUI offenders will also be subjected to court-ordered substance abuse evaluations. If a treatment program is recommended, they will need to complete that as part of their penalty.

  • Child Endangerment Charges - If there are child or minor passengers in the car at the time of the DUI, then a child endangerment charge will be leveled against the defendant. This is a separate charge and brings its own penalties.

How a DUI Affects Your Life

The immediate consequences of a DUI will depend on whether it’s your first DUI, second, or so on. Jail and/or prison time interrupts your life and will likely result in job loss and strained personal relationships. DUI fines can also set you back financially. 

In some cases, DUI charges in GA may result in having an ignition interlock device (IID) installed in your vehicle. This is basically a breathalyzer that you must breath into to start the car, as well as periodically to keep the car running.

What are the long-term consequences of a DUI conviction?

  • Fewer job and employment opportunities

  • Higher auto insurance rates

  • Difficulty finding housing

  • Personal relationships (due to social stigma)

The above consequences will hit those convicted of a felony DUI particularly hard. 

Does a DUI Show Up on a Background Check?

Both felony and misdemeanor DUIs show on background checks. While some other states allow DUIs to be expunged, or erased, from your record, Georgia does not. That makes it all the more important to hire a Savannah defense lawyer to protect your rights. 

Check out our DUI FAQ to learn more about these cases and how we can help.

Protect Yourself from DUI Penalties

It is crucial to retain legal help to protect yourself from the many harsh penalties of a DUI in Georgia. You should not be made an example of—our legal team will fight tirelessly to get your charges dropped or dismissed. Whether it be through a plea deal or proving innocence, securing the best results for your case will be our top priority.

When you work with Attorney Kurtis C. Bronston on your legal issue, you can expect the informed and knowledgeable guidance of an experienced leader. With a variety of legal experience in the DA’s office, as a prosecutor, and experience training other prosecutors and law enforcement officers, Savannah Attorney Bronston is well prepared to handle your case. 

Call The Law Office of Kurtis C. Bronston, LLC for legal help in Savannah. Or contact us online to get started with a free consultation.