Drunk Driving Defense Laws in Missouri

The penalties for a conviction of driving while intoxicated in Missouri are severe. Depending on whether it is your first, second or subsequent conviction, you could be facing up to four years in jail and a fine of up to $5000. Because the penalties can vary significantly depending on previous convictions, you may find the advice and guidance of an experienced attorney very helpful as your case proceeds through the Missouri courts.

What Are the Penalties for a First-Time DWI Conviction in Missouri?

If you have been arrested for DWI in Missouri with a blood alcohol concentration of .08 percent, and it is the first time you have faced such a charge, then the following penalties are possible:

  • Eight points will be added to your driver’s license.
  • A fine of up to $500.
  • Up to six months in jail.
  • Driving privileges will be suspended for 30 days, followed by 60 days of restricted driving.
  • Successful completion of the Missouri Substance Abuse Traffic Offender Program.
  • You may also be required to complete an intervention program, depending on your blood alcohol concentration at the time you were arrested.

There are other penalties that don’t relate to the law that you may suffer as well. These include having to pay for SR-22 insurance, the possibility of losing your job and living with the stigma that accompanies a DWI arrest and conviction.

What Are the Penalties for a Second DWI Conviction in Missouri?

A second conviction for DWI will deem you a “Prior Offender,” and the charged as a Class A Misdemeanor.

  • 12 points will be added to your driver’s license.
  • A fine of up to $1,000.
  • Up to one year in jail. Five days of that sentence must be served unless the court orders a minimum of 30 days of community service.
  • Driving privileges will be revoked for one year. If your last DWI was within the last five years, your driving privileges will be denied for five years.
  • Successful completion of the Missouri Substance Abuse Traffic Offender Program.
  • An Ignition Interlock Device may be required for one month.
  • ul>You may also be required to complete an intervention program, depending on your blood alcohol concentration at the time you were arrested.

Before your driver’s license can be reinstated, you will need to pass the written and driving parts of the Missouri Driving Test.

What Are the Penalties for a Subsequent DWI in Missouri?

A subsequent conviction for DWI in Missouri will deem you a “Persistent Offender," and be charged as a Class D Felony.

  • 12 points will be added to your driver’s license.
  • A fine of up to $5,000.
  • Up to four years in jail. Ten days must be served unless the court orders a minimum of 60 days of community service.
  • Driving privileges will be denied for 10 years.
  • You may also be required to complete an intervention program, depending on your blood alcohol concentration at the time you were arrested.

Other Possible Penalties

There are some other possible penalties for a DWI conviction in Missouri. For example, your vehicle could be confiscated by law enforcement. You may be required to use an Ignition Interlock Device on any vehicle you drive. The IID can be expensive, too, costing up to $800 a year.

The DWI laws in Missouri carry severe penalties, so it’s important to get your questions answered by a knowledgeable legal representative. This will ensure that you get the right answers and that you can build a strong defense in your case.

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.

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