TENNESSEE DUI: OFFENSES AND PENALTIES

TENNESSEE DUI: OFFENSES AND PENALTIES

The lawyers at Davis & Hoss follow changes to DUI laws in Tennessee. Below is the current status of the law.

DUI Offenses and Penalties:

1ST TIME DUI OFFENDER – (.08% BAC) [T.C.A. § 55-10-401] [T.C.A. § 55-10-403]

  • 48 hours up to 11 months, 29 days in jail for offenders in violation of § 55-10-401 (NOTE: For BAC .20 or greater, the minimum jail time is seven (7) consecutive days).
  • $350-$1,500 mandatory fine
  • License revocation for 1 year/Restricted License may be available
  • You will be ordered to participate in a DUI school
  • You will be required to participate in a 24-hour litter removal program (three 8-hour shifts) as part of probation. You will also have to pay the sheriff a supervision fee. Those convicted must wear a brightly-colored vest stating: "I am a drunk driver"
  • You will be ordered to pay restitution to any person suffering physical injury or personal loss
  • The judge will order you to install a vehicle Ignition Interlock Device at your expense if you meet the following conditions:
  • If you have a BAC of .15% or greater
  • If you were driving with a minor under the age of 18
  • If you are "involved in a traffic accident" due to your intoxication that results in more than $400.00 in damage, or
  • If you are "in violation of the implied consent law… and [have] a conviction or juvenile delinquency adjudication for a violation that occurred within [the past] 5 years."
  • NOTE: Ignition Interlock Devices cost a maximum of $70.00 installation and a maximum of $100 per month for the cost of monitoring, maintenance, and use. [T.C.A. § 55-10-423(a)]
  • If you receive two (2) convictions of DUI in 5 years, Ignition Interlock Device are required for 6 months after reinstatement at your expense
  • Drug and Alcohol Treatment may be required at the judge's discretion
  • Other court fees (ignition interlock fee of $40.00, blood alcohol test cost of between $17.50 and $50.00, etc.)
  • With towing, bail, attorney, high risk insurance, court costs, school, and reinstatement fees, your first offense average costs could add up to $5,000 or more

2ND TIME DUI OFFENDER (.08% BAC) [T.C.A. § 55-10-401] [T.C.A. § 55-10-403]

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

3RD TIME DUI OFFENDER (.08% BAC) [T.C.A. § 55-10-401] [T.C.A. § 55-10-403]

  • 120 days to 11 months, 29 days in jail
  • $1,100-$10,000 mandatory fine
  • License revocation for between 6 and 10 years/NO restricted license available
  • Subject to vehicle seizure/forfeiture
  • DUI school
  • Undergo a drug and alcohol assessment and attend a drug or alcohol rehabilitation program, both at your expense
  • Judge could order an Ignition Interlock Device installed at your expense
  • If you receive two (2) convictions of DUI in 5 years, an Ignition Interlock Device is required for 6 months after reinstatement at your expense

4TH AND SUBSEQUENT DUI OFFENDER (.08% BAC) [T.C.A. § 55-10-401] [T.C.A. § 55-10-403]

  • Class E Felony
  • 1 Year (365) days of jail time with a minimum of 150 consecutive days served
  • $3,000- $15,000 mandatory fine
  • License revocation for 8 years/NO restricted license available
  • Subject to vehicle seizure/forfeit
  • DUI school
  • Undergo a drug and alcohol assessment and attend a drug or alcohol rehabilitation program, both at your expense
  • Judge could order an Ignition Interlock Device installed at your expense
  • If you receive two (2) convictions of DUI in 5 years, an Ignition Interlock Device required for 6 months after reinstatement at your expense

VEHICULAR ASSAULT – SERIOUS INJURY TO ANOTHER PERSON BY A DUI DRIVER [T.C.A. § 39-13-106]

  • Class D Felony
  • Between 2 and 12 years of jail time according to range [40-35-112]
  • License revocation from 1 to 5 years depending upon number of prior offenses
  • Plus fines and court costs
  • CHILD ENDANGERMENT – DUI WITH PASSENGER UNDER 18 YEARS OLD [T.C.A. § 39-15-401]
  • 30 days mandatory minimum jail time
  • Minimum $1,000 mandatory fine
  • NOTE: These enhancements are in addition to any other jail time and fine for the underlying DUI offense!
  • Also, penalties are enhanced in the event that the minor passenger is seriously injured or killed:
  • Class D felony if child suffers serious injury [55-10-403]; between 2 and 4 years of jail time [T.C.A. § 40-35-112]
  • Class C Felony if child death involved; between 3 and 6 years of jail time
  • License revocation

VEHICULAR HOMICIDE [T.C.A. § 39-13-213]

  • Fatal vehicle crash caused by DUI with .08% BAC or more
  • Class B Felony [T.C.A. § 40-35-112]
  • License revocation for between 3 and 10 years/NO restricted license available
  • AGGRAVATED VEHICULAR ASSAULT WHILE DRIVING INTOXICATED
  • Class A Felony [T.C.A. § 39-13-218] [T.C.A. § 40-35-112]
  • If any of the following conditions are present: Two or more prior (a) DUI convictions, (b) Vehicular assault convictions or, (c) any combination
  • One prior Vehicular Homicide
  • A BAC of .20% or greater at the time of the vehicular homicide has one (1) prior DUI or Vehicular Assault offense
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