What are the DUI penalties in Tennessee?

What are the DUI penalties in Tennessee?

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Frequently attorneys are asked, what are the potential penalties for DUI?  Most lawyers know the conventional answer: loss of license and 48 hours in jail.  But the reality is that DUI law is becoming more complicated and the penalties can be more invasive than one might think. Listed below are the actual DUI penalties in Tennessee. These are listed by the TN Department of Safety & Homeland Security and are updated as legislative changes occur.

By way of example, a first offense DUI has the following potential penalties:
  • from 48 hours in jail up to 11 months, 29 days for first offenders
  • .20 BAC or greater minimum jail time 7 consecutive days
  • License revocation for 1 year/restricted license may be available for work
  • 3 days (24 hours) of community service like trash pick up
  • alcohol & drug counseling
  • You will be ordered to participate in a DUI school
  • Pay restitution to any person suffering physical injury or personal loss
  • $350-$1,500 fine to the state plus often a local court's DUI fine typically another $100
  • With towing, bail, high risk insurance, court costs, school, and reinstatement fees, your first offense average costs could add up to $5,000 
  • Judge can order you to install a vehicle Ignition Interlock Device at your expense. Minimum 1st year cost $810 [55-10-412d]
  • If two (2) convictions of DUI in 5 years, Ignition Interlock Device required for 6 months after reinstatement at your expense Drug and Alcohol Treatment may be required at the judge's discretion.

A second offense DUI carries the following potential penalties:

  • from 45 days to 11 months, 29 days in jail
  • $600-$3,500 mandatory fine
  • 3 days community service
  • License revocation for 2 years/Restricted License available after first year
  • Subject to vehicle seizure/forfeiture
  • You will be ordered to attend a DUI school
  • alcohol and drug counseling
  • The judge can order you to install a vehicle Ignition Interlock Device at your expense
  • If two (2) convictions of DUI in 5 years, Ignition Interlock Device required for 6 months after reinstatement at your expense
  • Pay restitution to any person suffering personal injury or loss.

For a full list of penalties click this link or go to: 
http://www.tn.gov/safety/duioutline.shtml
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