Ohio DUI Laws, Limits, and Penalties
Ohio takes safe driving very seriously! If you get caught driving under the influence or while intoxicated in Ohio, you will get charged with an OVI (Operating a Vehicle under the Influence). If you happen to be under 21 years of age, you will get charged with Operating a Vehicle after Underage Consumption (OVAUC). It is important to avoid any alcohol consumption at all costs. Especially before going behind the steering wheel and risking your life and the lives of others on the road.
Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) Test
Once pulled over, you will have to undergo a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) test to determine the alcohol percentage in your body. In Ohio, if you are over 21 years of age and driving with an blood alcohol concentration of 0.08%, you are intoxicated. If you are caught under age 21, a reading over 0.02% is deemed intoxicated. Lastly, if you’re driving a commercial motor vehicle with a reading over 0.04% is considered intoxicated. You will most likely be charged with an OVI or OVAC in all of these cases.
Ohio DUI Penalties
Penalties in Ohio for DUI are a double whammy in which you have to deal with both criminal charges and consequences from the BMV which are officially called Administrative License Suspensions (ALS). ALS laws are harsh in which your license can be suspended by the BMV if you fail or refuse a chemical test.
Below we provide a breakdown of the criminal penalties in Ohio if caught driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol. These offenses listed below are for first, second and third time offenders:
First offense with a BAC level between 0.08% and 0.17%:
- Suspended license for 1-3 years
- Imprisonment for 72 hours or enrollment in an intervention program
- Fined $375-$1075
Second offense with a BAC level between 0.08% and 0.17%:
- Suspended license for 1-5 years
- Imprisonment from 20 days to 6 months
- Fined $500-$1625
- The impounded vehicle for 90 days
- Court ordered drug/alcohol assessment
A third offense with a BAC level between 0.08% and 0.17%:
- Suspended license for 2-10 years
- Imprisonment from 30 days to 1 year
- Fined $850-$2750
- Mandatory drug/alcohol treatment
Driver’s License Reinstatement
When your suspension period comes to end, you will have to make sure you completed all the required penalties from both state court and BMV. Once clearance is received, you must pay $100-$600 to restore your license. Upon approval, you will have to go through the whole process of obtaining a driver’s license again in the state of Ohio.