Vermont DUI Laws: FAQ

What are the penalties for a DUI conviction in Vermont?

Vermont’s DUI Penalties Include:

  • 1ST Offense: Maximum fine of $750.00 or maximum imprisonment of two years or both, 23 V.S.A. §1210(b).

  • 2nd Offense: Maximum fine of $1,500.00 or maximum imprisonment of two years or both, but 48 consecutive hours of imprisonment mandatory, 23 V.S.A. §1210(c).

  • 3rd Offense: Maximum fine of $2,500.00 or maximum imprisonment of 5 years or both. Third or subsequent offense is a felony. 23 V.S.A. §1210(d).

  • DUI Resulting In Death: Maximum fine of $10,000 or imprisonment of at least one year but not more than 15 years, or both. Serious Bodily Injury Resulting is a felony. 23 V.S.A. §1210(f).

In addition to fines, the Court must impose the following surcharges:
(a) $60.00 for conviction of 23 V.S.A. §1201 for Department of Health Laboratory Services.
(b) $50.00 for conviction of 23 V.S.A. §1201 for on­ call public defender fund.
(c) $50.00 for conviction of 23 V.S.A. §1201 for DUI enforcement fund.
(d) $17.50 for conviction of violating any motor vehicle law.

How can I get my license reinstated after a DUI in Vermont?

License reinstatement is governed by 23 V.S.A. §1209(a) for both civil and criminal license suspensions, as well as for violations of 23 V.S.A. §1216, drivers under 21, under 23 V.S.A. §1218, commercial motor vehicle operators.

  • SCREENING ALCOHOL EDUCATION PROGRAM: While your license is under suspension, an alcohol screening, an alcohol and driving education program and an alcohol therapy program may be required at your own expense and must be completed to have your license reinstated.
  • PROOF INSURANCE: In addition, license reinstatement will not occur until one files proof of insurance and continues to do so for the next three consecutive years. If, at any item during the three year period, one does not have insurance, the license will go under automatic suspension until insurance is proven. Once established again, the proof requirement continues for another three consecutive years. See, 23 V.S.A. §801 and §802.
  • REINSTATEMENT FEE: Finally, one must pay a 35% reinstatement fee to the Vermont Department of Motor Vehicles.

How long will my driver’s license be suspended for a DUI in Vermont?

  • 1st Offense: 90 days and until compliance with 23 V.S.A. §1209(a). See, 23 V.S.A. §1206.
  • 2nd Offense: 18 months and until compliance with 23 V.S.A. §1209(a). See 23 V.S.A. §1209(a).
  • 3rd Offense: For life. See V.S.A. §1208(b). The suspension may be reduced to 3 years after 2 years of alcohol abstinence, after successful completion of a therapy program and after a reinstatement hearing. See, 23 V.S.A. §1209(a)(b).
  • Refusal: 6 months for a first offense accompanied by a refusal of evidentiary testing. Compliance with 23 V.S.A. §1209(a) is required before reinstatement.

What are the DUI penalties for drivers under 21 in Vermont?

Anyone who is under age 21 operating a motor vehicle with an alcohol concentration of 0.02% or more commits a civil traffic violation and faces a 6 month license suspension for a first offense, and a one year suspension for a subsequent offense. See, 23 V.S.A. §1216. Violators of §1216 may still be prosecuted for criminal DUI under 23 V.S.A. §1201. Any license suspension under §1216 remains in effect until the prescribed time lapses and until compliance with 23 V.S.A. §1209(a).


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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