NY Traffic Firm Articles New York’s DUI/DWI Penalties

New York’s DUI/DWI Penalties

By Dan Kron  Nov. 22, 2017 2:14p

Penalties for first-time offenders in New York vary. The blood alcohol concentration, or BAC, along with the driver's impairment level determine the punishment. There are increased penalties for a first-offense DWI when the driver has a BAC of .18% or above; this is called an ‘aggravated DWI.' There are other circumstances which may affect the penalties for a first offender such as the driver's age if anyone was injured, if a minor was in the car and if the individual was operating a commercial vehicle.

Offense Classifications

New York has layers of classifications, including:

DWI (Driving while intoxicated) BAC over .08%

Aggravated DWI - BAC .18% or above or diving with a passenger 15-years or younger,

Alcohol DWAI (Driving while ability impaired)

Drug DWAI: Ability to drive reasonably and prudently is impaired

Administrative Penalties

DWI, also often called a DUI, the first offender where the BAC is between .08% and .18% means license suspension for at least six months or a year if the driver is below 21-years-old.

First offenders who refuse to submit to chemical testing will have their permit suspended for one year. License reinstatement means a payment of fees, installation of ignition interlock and completion of an "Impaired Driver Program.

Criminal Penalties

No minimum jail time is required for drivers with a first-offense DWI/DUI in New York, yet it's possible to get a jail sentence up to one year. All convictions require an ignition interlock and fines range between $500 and $1,000. Depending on circumstances a conviction may remain on a driving record for up to 25-years.

DWAI Offense

A DWAI is a lesser offense of DWI with the difference based on impairment level. A person can be convicted of DWAI if the ability to drive "reasonably and prudently" is impaired to any extent. Conviction of a DWI, based on impairment level, the officer must show impaired to a ‘substantial extent.'

Penalties for a DWAI are less serious than for a DWI, and there's no minimum jail time for either. The maximum jail time for a DWAI is 15-days whereas a DWI brings a maximum of one year.

Get Help

To learn more about New York DWI/DUI law contact a criminal defense attorney.

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