Drunk Driving Defense Laws in Georgia

The penalties for a conviction of driving under the influence (DUI) in Georgia are severe. Depending on whether it is an offender’s first, second or subsequent conviction, they may be facing a fine of up to $5,000 and a minimum of 90 days in jail. Georgia’s DUI laws were overhauled in 2008 and now feature a felony for those facing their fourth DUI within a 10-year period.

What Are the Penalties for a First-Time DUI Conviction in Georgia?

If you have been arrested for DUI in Georgia, and it is the first time you have faced such a charge, then you will likely face the following penalties:

  • A fine of $300 to $1,000.
  • Imprisonment from 10 days to 12 months. All but 24 hours may be suspended.
  • For those with a blood alcohol concentration of less than .08 percent, a minimum of 20 hours of community service is ordered. For those with a blood alcohol concentration of .08 percent or higher, a minimum of 40 hours of community service is ordered.
  • A clinical evaluation and the successful completion of necessary alcohol or drug treatment.
  • Probation for a period of 12 months, less any time served in jail.

After a conviction for a first-time DUI in Georgia, an offender’s driving privileges will be suspended for 12 months. After 120 days, an offender may apply to have his or her driving privileges reinstated if the following conditions are met:

  • 120-day suspension completed.
  • Completion of an approved DUI Alcohol or Drug Use Risk Reduction Program.
  • Pay the $210 reinstatement fee.

What Are the Penalties for a Second DUI Conviction in Georgia?

If an offender is convicted of a second DUI offense within five years of the first one, the penalties are more severe and include:

  • A fine of $600 to $1,000.
  • Imprisonment from 90 days to 12 months. There is a mandatory 48 hours that must be served.
  • At least 30 days of community service.
  • A clinical evaluation and the successful completion of necessary alcohol or drug treatment. Offender must pay for treatment program.
  • Probation for a period of 12 months, less any time served in jail.

After a second conviction for DUI in Georgia within five years, an offender’s driving privileges will be suspended for three years.

What Are the Penalties for a Third DUI Conviction in Georgia

Should an offender be convicted of a third DUI in Georgia, he or she faces higher fines and longer imprisonment periods, including:

  • A fine of $1,000 to $5,000.
  • Imprisonment from 120 days to 12 months. Fifteen days of actual jail time must be served.
  • At least 30 days of community service.
  • A clinical evaluation and the successful completion of necessary alcohol or drug treatment. Offender must pay for treatment program.
  • Probation for a period of 12 months, less any time served in jail.

After a third conviction for DUI in Georgia within five years, an offender’s driving privileges will be revoked for five years. In addition, the offender’s vehicle license plate will be seized and sent to the court, who will then forward it on to the Department of Motor Vehicle Safety.

The offender’s name, photo and address will also be published in the local newspaper. This will be done at the offender’s expense.

What Is a DUI, Alcohol or Drug Use Risk Reduction Course?

The DUI, Alcohol or Drug Use Risk Reduction Course is an intervention program that is mandated by Georgia law for those who are convicted of DUI, BUI or Boating Under the Influence, illegal drug possession or operating a motor vehicle while in possession of alcohol and underage. There are two parts to this course: assessment and intervention.

As you can see, Georgia DUI laws can be complex. Building a strong defense case is possible with the help of a knowledgeable, experienced attorney.

The information on this page is meant to provide a general overview of the law. The laws in your state and/or city may deviate significantly from those described here. If you have specific questions related to your situation you should speak with a local attorney.

Additional Drunk Driving Articles

Search LawInfo's Drunk Driving Resources

Lead Counsel Rated Law Firm

Click Here to Learn More