Alcohol-Related Laws and Consequences
This module is about the consequences that can result from breaking the Florida DUI laws.
Any driver less than 21 years of age who is stopped by law enforcement and has a breath or blood alcohol level (BAL) of .02 or higher will automatically have his or her driving privilege suspended for six months (FS 322.2616).
The courts will have little to no sympathy when it comes to alcohol-related incidents, especially when a crash results in injury. If you are involved in an alcohol-related incident, be prepared to be fined and spend time in prison.
This module introduces you to the Florida alcohol-related laws and consequences of breaking those laws. The topics that will be covered include:
If you refuse to submit to a breath, urine, or blood test, it is admissible as evidence in DUI criminal proceedings. Second or subsequent refusal is considered to be a misdemeanor of the first degree.
The first time you refuse, your license will be suspended for one year. If you refuse a second time, your license will be suspended for 18 months (FS 316.1932).
If necessary, your blood may be drawn in DUI cases involving serious bodily injury or death by authorized medical personnel with the use of reasonable force by the arresting officer, even if you, as the driver, refuse.
If you are not capable of refusal because you are unconscious or there is some other mental or physical condition preventing you from giving your consent, the authorities still have the right to perform the test. A blood test may be administered whether or not you are told that your failure to submit to such a blood test will result in the suspension of your privilege to operate a motor vehicle.
Portable alcohol breath testing devices can be used for persons under the age of 21. The reading is admissible as evidence in any administrative hearing conducted under the proper state statue.
2. Minimum Drinking Age
In Florida, the possession of alcoholic beverages by persons under the age of 21 is against the law.
The first time you are caught in violation of this law, you will be convicted of a second degree misdemeanor which can include up to 60 days in jail. Additional convictions are considered first degree misdemeanors, which can mean up to one year in jail. In addition, you can be fined up to $500 for a first offense, and $1,000 for another offense can be imposed.
If you are under the age of 18, your license can be suspended for six months to one year for the first offense, or two years for second offense (FS 562.111).
3. Progressive DUI Laws
In the State of Florida, the penalties for DUI become progressively more severe depending upon the number of convictions and the blood alcohol level found.
There is a specific fine schedule established to address the penalties for DUI convictions.
The first conviction results in a fine of not less than $500, or more than $1,000. If your Blood/Breath Alcohol Level (BAL) is .15 or higher or there is a minor in the vehicle, the fine is not less than $1,000, or more than $2,000.
The second conviction results in a fine of not less than $1,000, or more than $2,000. If your BAL is .15 or higher or there is a minor in the vehicle, the fine goes up to not less than $2,000, or more than $4,000.
If you are convicted for a third offense, you will receive a fine of not less than $2,000, or more than $5,000. If your BAL is .15 or higher or there is minor in the vehicle, the fine will be not less than $4,000.
If you are convicted of a fourth conviction you will be fined not less than $2,000 (FS 316.193).
In addition to the fines, there are other penalties that may be imposed for DUI convictions. They include imprisonment, impounding of your vehicle, installation of an interlock device, and a felony conviction.
The first conviction may result in not more than six months in prison. If your BAL is .15 or higher or there is a minor in vehicle, the sentence goes up to not more than nine months.
The second conviction results in a sentence of no more than nine months. If the second conviction occurs within five years of the first offense, there is a mandatory imprisonment of at least 10 days of which at least 48 hours of confinement must be consecutive.
If you receive a third conviction for DUI within 10 years of the second conviction, you will spend at least 30 days in prison. Once again, at least 48 hours of your confinement must be consecutive. If the third conviction for DUI occurs more than 10 years after the second conviction, you may be imprisoned for no more than 12 months.
If you receive a fourth or subsequent conviction, the sentence will be for not more than five years. However, it could be more since you will be classified as a habitual/violent offender (FS 316.193).
Impoundment or Immobilization of Vehicle
Impoundment or immobilization of your vehicle may occur unless your family has no other means of transportation.
The first conviction may result in your vehicle being impounded or immobilized for 10 days.
The second conviction within five years of the first offense may result in your vehicle being impounded or immobilized for 30 days.
The third conviction within 10 years of the first offense may result in your vehicle being impounded or immobilized for 90 days.
The impoundment or immobilization of your vehicle may not occur concurrently with your time in prison. The court may dismiss the order of impoundment of any vehicle you own if the vehicle is operated solely by your employees or by any business you own (FS 316.193).
Ignition Interlock Device
An ignition interlock device is a breath analyzer on your vehicle that is electronically connected to the ignition. This device is about the size of a cellular phone. When you breathe into the unit for several seconds, it measures your breath alcohol level and compares it with predetermined limits. If your BAL is over 0.05, your vehicle will not start. If your BAL is within the allowable range, your vehicle will start. Then, as you’re driving, you will be required to take periodic rolling retests.
The first conviction of a DUI may result in the court ordering the installation of a department-approved ignition interlock device for up to six months. If the driver was accompanied by a person younger than 18 years old in the vehicle, it will be mandatory that they install an ignition interlock device. A second offense of driving under the influence with a minor in the car would result in the device being installed for not less than 2 continuous years.
The second conviction results in mandatory installation for at least one year.
The third conviction occurring more than 10 years after the date of a prior conviction results in mandatory installation for at least two years (FS 316.193, FS 322.2715).
The authorized installer of the ignition interlock device will collect $12 in addition to any fees authorized by rule for the installation and maintenance of the device. Those fees will be deposited into the Highway Safety Operating Trust Fund and will be used for the operation of the Ignition Interlock Device Program (FS 322.2715).
DUI Felony Conviction
If you are convicted of a third DUI offense within 10 years of a second DUI conviction or a fourth or subsequent DUI, it is considered a Third Degree Felony with a fine of no more than $5,000 and/or five years of imprisonment.
If you cause serious bodily injury while driving under the influence or if you are considered to be a habitual/violent felony offender, you will be guilty of a Third Degree Felony with a fine of not more than $5,000 fine and/or five years of imprisonment.
If you are convicted of manslaughter and do not have a prior DUI, you may be eligible for a hardship reinstatement (FS 316.193).
Driver License Revocation Periods for DUI
The first conviction may result in a minimum of 180 days of revocation with the maximum being one year.
If you receive a second conviction within five years of the first conviction, you may receive a minimum of five years of revocation. You might be eligible for hardship reinstatement after one year. Other second offenders may receive a minimum of 180 days of revocation with the maximum being one year.
If you are convicted a third time within 10 years of your second conviction, the minimum is a ten year revocation. Other third offenders may receive a minimum of 180 days of revocation with the maximum being one year.
A fourth conviction (regardless of when prior convictions occurred) or murder with a Motor Vehicle results in a mandatory permanent revocation (FS 322.28).
Even if your driver license has been permanently revoked because you have been convicted of manslaughter while driving under the influence, you may be able to get a restricted license. If ten years have passed since a driver's privileges were revoked and there are no prior convictions for a DUI-related offense, he or she may be eligible for a hardship license. To qualify, the driver must prove that he or she has not been arrested for a drug-related offense, has not driven a motor vehicle without a license, and has been drug free since his or her conviction. The driver must also complete a DUI program. The Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles will then determine if the driver meets all the requirements and may reinstate the driver's privileges so that the driver may drive to and from work only. Effective October 1st, 2011, the ten year wait period changes to a five year wait period (FS 32.271).
Florida DHSMV Point System
The State of Florida assesses drivers convicted of various driving infractions a certain number of points. Points are cumulative and can result in the loss of your driver license. Here are the points you will receive for common offenses. They can add up quickly and at a minimum can result in the loss of your license and increased insurance premiums.
Leaving the scene of a crash resulting in property damage of more than $50 = six points.
Conviction for unlawful speeding that results in a collision = six points.
Conviction for reckless driving = four points.
Passing a stopped school bus with its flashers operating = four points.
Failing to obey a traffic control signal/sign/device = four points.
Driving during restricted hours = three points.
Driving at an unlawful speed: 16 mph or more over lawful or posted speed = four points.
Driving at an unlawful speed: 15 mph or less over lawful or posted speed = three points.
As a reminder, note that fines are doubled when infractions occur within a school zone or construction zone, with possible civil penalties of up to $1,000. You may also be required to complete a driving school course.
All other moving violations (including parking on a highway outside the limits of municipalities) = three points.
Caught with an open container of alcohol as an operator = three points.
Conviction for a child restraint violation = three points.
It does not matter if you are convicted in an out-of-state court or in a federal court, you will receive the same number of points outlined above (FS 322.27).
Florida TLSAE/Drug & Alcohol 4 hour Course Online
Who is required to take this 4-hour drug and alcohol course?
This is a first-time drivers ed course for new aspiring drivers. The state of Florida requires all new drivers take a 4-hour drug and alcohol course. If you want your Permit License you must take this course. You can take the DATA course when you are 14 1/2. You can sign up right now at our website. Our course is easy and fun!
Florida first time driver course required to get a Florida drivers license. Florida first time driver courses teach drivers how drugs and alcohol affect driving,. In that situation you have to go home, make a new appointment and return the DMV. Every new driver is required to take a Florida TLSAE course.
Enroll your Florida 4 hour drug and alcohol course online and meet your learner's permit requirement.
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