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Suite 100

Raleigh, NC 27601

(919) 899-6311

Driving While Impaired (DWI)

NC DWI Penalties: Younger Than 21

If you’re younger than 21 years old and caught doing any of the
following, you’ll lose your license for a 30-day pretrial period, and
then 1 year thereafter:

Operating a motor vehicle with any measurable amount of alcohol in your system.

• Purchasing or attempting to purchase alcohol.

• Helping someone else purchase alcohol.

• Using a fraudulent driver’s license or ID, or other falsified document to purchase alcohol.

• Using someone else’s driver’s license or ID to purchase alcohol.

 

Understand your DWI Penalties

 

NC DWI penalties are serious business. Based on your age, the offense number, and your license type, you face penalties like:

Fines, including court costs and lawyer fees.

License suspension or revocation.

Jail time. For some offenses, the jail time is mandatory rather than possible.

Community service.

Higher car insurance rates.

Depending on your situation, you might also enroll in an alcohol safety school or substance abuse assessment program.

 

NC DWI Penalties: 21 and Older

NC DWI penalties are based on your “level,” and your judge uses mitigating factors to determine your level. Factors include your BAC, prescription medications, your current driving record, and other aspects of your DWI situation and overall driving history.

 

North Carolina DWI Levels

Level 5

• Immediate license suspension for 30 days, with the possibility of limited driving privileges after 10 days.

• Up to a $200 fine.

• Between 24 hours and 60 days in jail. (Your judge might suspend your sentence to 24 hours of imprisonment or 24 hours of community service as part of probation.)

• Substance abuse assessment, if you’re placed on probation.

Level 4

• Immediate license suspension for 30 days, with the possibility of limited driving privileges after 10 days.

• Up to a $500 fine.

• Between 48 hours and 120 days in jail. (Your judge might suspend your sentence to 48 hours of imprisonment or 48 hours of community service as part of probation.)

• Substance abuse assessment, if you’re placed on probation.

Level 3

• Immediate license suspension for 30 days, with the possibility of limited driving privileges after 10 days.

• Up to a $1,000 fine.

• Between 72 hours and 6 months in jail. (Your judge might suspend your sentence to 72 hours of imprisonment or 72 hours of community service as part of probation.)

• Substance abuse assessment, if you’re placed on probation.

Level 2

• Immediate license suspension for 30 days, with the possibility of limited driving privileges after 10 days.

• Up to a $2,000 fine.

• Between 7 days and 12 months in jail. (Your judge might suspend your sentence to 90 days of abstaining from alcohol, which the court will monitor.)

• Substance abuse assessment, if you’re placed on probation.

Level 1

• Immediate license suspension for 30 days, with the possibility of limited driving privileges after 10 days.

• Up to a $4,000 fine.

• Between 30 days and 24 months in jail. (Your judge might give you 10 days under probation cases involving alcohol monitoring for 120 days.)

• Substance abuse assessment, if you’re placed on probation.

Aggravated Level 1

• Immediate license suspension for 30 days, with the possibility of limited driving privileges after 10 days.

• Up to a $10,000 fine.

• Between 12 months and 36 months in jail. (Your judge might give you 120 days under probation cases involving alcohol monitoring for a minimum of 120 days.)

• Monitored abstaining from alcohol for 4 months after prison release.

• Substance abuse assessment.

DWI License Suspension and Revocation

DWI brings mandatory license suspension:

• First conviction: 1 year.

• Subsequent convictions (within 3 years): 4 years.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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