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One thing that Massachusetts does not tolerate is breaking Massachusetts DUI laws. In fact, the state has very strict laws concerning driving under the influence. If you find yourself with a DUI, take the time to find cheap car insurance quotes with our ZIP code search!
DUI laws, or driving under the influence, OUI, or operating under the influence, and DWI, or driving while intoxicated, are all terms used to describe possible drunk driving charges in the state of Massachusetts.
In Massachusetts, a driver cannot have a blood alcohol limit of more than 0.08 percent. If a driver is under the legal drinking age of 21, they can have their license suspended if their blood alcohol level is more than 0.02 percent.
If a person is stopped and suspected of drinking under the influence, the officer will normally conduct a breathalyzer test. If a driver refuses to take the test, their license will automatically be suspended. The penalties for refusing to take a breathalyzer test are as follows:
- License suspended for 180 days if they have no prior DUI convictions
- License suspended for 3 years if they have one prior DUI conviction
- License suspended for 5 years if they have two prior DUI convictions
- License suspended for life if they have three or more DUI convictions
The breathalyzer test that officers use is attached to the ignition of a vehicle, and the vehicle cannot be started again until after the driver passes a breathalyzer test. An officer is required to inform the suspect of the penalties for refusing to take the test.
Massachusetts DUI Penalties
Besides having to pay for for Massachusetts car insurance. there are many other penalties. If a person gets arrested and convicted of driver under the influence in Massachusetts, they are facing the following penalties:
• 1st offense:
- Up to 30 months of jail time
- $500 to $5000 fine
- $250 assessment
- $50 to the DUI trust fund
- 1 year of having license suspended
- Treatment program assigned by the court
• 2nd offense
- 30 days to 30 months of jail time
- $600 to $10,000 fine
- License suspended of up to 2 years
- Hardship license eligibility after 1 year
- Interlock ignition device mandatory
• 3rd offense
- Considered a felony
- 150 days to 5 years of jail time
- $1,000 to $15,000 fine
- License suspended for 8 years
• 4th offense
- 12 months to 5 years of jail time
- $1,500 to $25,000 fine
- License suspended for 10 years
• 5th offense or more than 5 offenses
- 24 months to 5 years of jail time
- $2,000 to $50,000 fine
- License revoked for life
If an accident results in severe injuries or death of someone, the penalties will be much harsher.
If a person is found guilty of driving under the influence, it will remain on their driving record permanently. The verdict is also reported to the Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles, which informs the National Driver’s License Registry.
Massachusetts Program for DUI Offenders
The state of Massachusetts provides a Driver Alcohol Education Program for individuals accused of driving under the influence for the first time. Many individuals who are placed on probation are required to take this course. Some judges will offer this program as an alternative to license suspension, fines or jail time. This type of program could help you save on your state car insurance!
The Driver Alcohol Education Program consists of 16 weeks of 32 hours of group meetings. Also included in the program are two meetings in their community, in which the individual experiences self-help groups. The offender will be required to listen to several speakers on the possible consequences of driving under the influence.
DUI Trials in Massachusetts
If a drunken driving charge goes to trial, the process consists of juries of six people. If a suspect waives his right to a trial by jury, a judge will be appointed to reside over the proceedings. In order to insurance you car insurance rates do not rise, check your local car insurance rules to insure you aren’t violating any laws!
Under Massachusetts law, in order for victims of an accident to receive compensation, a driver must be found legally responsible for the accident. If someone served alcohol to a person who was already drunk, the server could be held liable. This law applies to bar or restaurant employees, as well as private parties.
Getting arrested for a DUI is a traumatic experience for everyone involved. Therefore, individuals who are accused of driving under the influence should hire an attorney to help them come up with the best solution, so they can begin a life where they drink more responsibly. Compare car insurance with our FREE search! By entering your ZIP code you can save on insurance and find affordable car insurance!