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How much worse is a second DUI conviction than a first DUI conviction?

On Behalf of | Dec 15, 2021 | Dui

Florida law is harsher on people who drive under the influence of alcohol or drugs than many other states. As you can imagine, the penalties increase for subsequent violations. If you already have a DUI conviction on your record, and you are facing DUI charges for the second time, how much more severe will the penalties be if the court convicts you?

The fines and jail time increase

The first difference between a first and second DUI conviction is that the associated fine increases considerably. The statutory range for a first time DUI fine is $500 to $1,000, at the discretion of the judge. On a second conviction, the range increases to between $1,000 and $2,000.

In addition to increased fines, your second offense could result in increased jail time. By law, the maximum jail sentence for a second DUI increases from 6 months to 9 months.

Additional penalties for a second offense

After your second conviction, the court will mandate that you install an ignition interlock device (IID), at your own expense, in all of the cars that you regularly drive. You will not be able to remove the IID for the judge-imposed timeframe, which will be at least a year, possibly longer.

An IID is a device that connects to your vehicle’s ignition, and that is attached to a breathalyzer. Before you can start your car, you will have to blow into the breathalyzer. If your blood alcohol content is above the legal limit, the device will not allow your engine to start.

There are many consequences that come from a DUI conviction that can follow you for the rest of your life. Fortunately, you have the opportunity to fight the charges and try to get them dropped or reduced.