Washington DUI Laws, Limits, and Penalties

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Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol in Washington will automatically suspend your Washington driver’s license. To determine if you are driving under the influence (DUI) or while intoxicated (DWI), the Washington Department of Licensing (DOL) uses a chemical test. The test is known as the blood alcohol concentration or BAC. The alcohol percentage will vary per drivers 21 years and over and for younger than 21 years old.

Washington DUI BAC Test

For drivers caught DUI or DWI, their BAC test must be:

  • 08% for 21 years or older
  • 02% if you are younger than 21 years
  • 04% for commercial drivers

If you are pulled over and refuse to take the chemical or BAC test, you will be cited, and your license will be suspended immediately.

Washington DUI Penalties

The Washington DOL will suspend your license as a penalty for a DUI, DWI, or refusal to take the BAC test. Additional penalties will be added at:

  • A court conviction
  • Revocation if someone dies

Washington DOL DUI Penalties

Once you are arrested, your Washington driver’s license will be suspended for 90 days to 24 months. If the court convicts you, you could face the following if you had no prior DUIs in the last seven years:

  • BACs under 0.15%
    • Driver’s license suspension for 90 day
    • 1 to 364 days in prison
    • Fine $940 to $5,000
  • BACs over 0.15% or refusal to take the test
    • Driver’s license suspension
    • A one-year suspension for BAC test
    • Two years suspension for refusal to take the test
  • Fine $1,195.50 to $5,000

You may be required to attend Alcohol and Drug Education programs.

Washington DOL Ignition Interlock Driver’s License

You may require installing an ignition interlock device if you are granted the chance to drive by the court. However, you must:

  • Complete a Restricted Driver License Application
  • Install an ignition interlock device on your vehicle
  • Provide proof of your financial responsibility with an SR-22 insurance form
  • Pay application fee: $100

Mail your application to:

Restricted Licensing

Department of Licensing

P.O. Box 3907

Seattle, WA 98124

Reinstating Your Washington Driver’s License

You may be able to reinstate your driving privileges if the Washington DOL approves. To begin the process, you must meet the requirements which could be:

  • Completion of an alcohol and drug treatment program
  • Submit your application to the DOL
  • A pay reinstatement fee of $150
  • Retake the written and road test
  • Complete suspension