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August 29, 2005 - Florida DUI Laws
People do many stupid things, especially in cars. Backing through the plate glass window of a pizza restaurant is a perfect example. As long as no one in the restaurant gets hurt it's just a matter of paying for the window and replacing the exhaust system ripped off the bottom of the car. I speak from personal experience. What I cannot relate to is drinking and driving.
Zero Tolerance for Young Florida Drivers
If you are under 21 years old you cannot have a single drink and drive. Florida has a Zero Tolerance law for all drivers under 21. The Zero Tolerance saw reads as follows: "Any driver under 21 years of age who is stopped by law enforcement and has a breath or blood alcohol level of .02 will automatically have their driving privilege suspended for 6 months." If you refuse to take a test your license is automatically suspended for one year.
Keep in mind that losing your license is only the beginning of your troubles for a DUI if you are under 21. Affording auto insurance will become a serious challenge and your mistake could drive up the cost of car insurance for your entire family.
Adult Drunk Drivers
For drivers over 21 the Blood Alcohol Level is .08. For each conviction the penalties go up. Can you believe that there are people stupid enough to get a DUI more than once? You could make one mistake, have a few drinks and get caught. But if you repeat this behavior you need serious help. Here is a summary of the penalties for a DUI conviction in Florida.
First DUI Conviction in Florida
- Fine of $250 to $500 ($500 to $1000 with a minor in the Car)
- 50 Hours of community service
- Probation for up to 1 year
- Jail sentence of up to 6 months
- License revoked for a minimum of 6 months
- 12 Hour DUI school
Second DUI conviction in Florida
For a second DUI conviction you will pay more, be in jail longer, do 21 hours of DUI school, and lose your license for up to 6 months. If your second conviction is within 5 years your license will be revoked for five (5) years.
Your third DUI conviction gets more expensive and if your conviction is your third within 10 years will result in your licensed being revoked for ten (10) years. You can be imprisoned for up to 12 months.
Never Drive Again
Get convicted a fourth time for a DUI in Florida and its ugly. You can be locked up for up to five years and you will never drive again.
Legal Resources for a DUI
State of Florida Licensed DUI Programs - The list of approved DUI program providers
DUI and DWI Attorneys - A good list of laywers that specialize in DUI in Florida and around the country
Florida DUI Defense Information - excellent tips on what to do if you get a DUI.
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