The goal behind imposing stringent DUI laws and penalties is to reduce the number of accidents and make Florida’s roads and highways safer. Unfortunately, these harsh penalties also apply to upstanding Floridians, who may have been unfairly charged with driving under the influence. Our highly rated team of Florida DUI defense attorneys has been successfully fighting and winning DUI cases for years to help people who are unfairly or unreasonably charged with minor to most serious drunk driving offenses.

DUI Laws in Florida

In Florida, a driver is prohibited from driving or being in actual physical control of a car while:

  • Under the influence of harmful chemical substances, alcohol, or illegal controlled substances
  • Having a BAC of 0.08% or more

“Under the influence” in Florida is defined as being impaired to the extent of being deprived of normal faculties. You can get a DUI on the evidence that your BAC is 0.08% or more. This limit is reduced to 0.04% if the license holder drives a commercial vehicle.

DUI Penalties in Florida

First Conviction

In Florida, first convictions are harshly punished. The court and the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles have the right to enforce the following administrative penalties under the law:

  • Driver’s license suspension (180 days to one year)
  • Interlock device
  • $130 administration fee
  • DUI program

Second Conviction

You will face the following administrative penalties for second convictions:

  • Suspended/revoked driver’s license
  • $130 administrative fee
  • DUI program and interlock device

Third Conviction

You may face a further administrative penalty if you are convicted of a third DUI:

  • DUI program
  • Suspended/revoked license for up to 10 years
  • $45-$75 driver’s license reinstatement fee
  • $130 administrative fee
  • Interlock device

Felony DUIs

A third DUI conviction can be charged as a felony in some instances, such as when a minor is present in the car, or the DUI causes severe bodily injury in a crash. It is also considered a felony if it occurs within ten years of a prior conviction. Fourth and subsequent DUIs are always regarded as felony offenses.

Background media

Refusing a DUI Blood or Breath Test

All drivers in Florida are required to consent to a chemical test of their urine, blood, or breath to determine the extent of alcohol or drugs present. The implied consent law imposes one-year license revocation on anyone that refuses to test. There is also an 18-month revocation for any subsequent refusal with a maximum fine of $1,000 and 1 year in jail.

Stack of books in front of a brick wall background.

Underage DUI Laws in Florida

Drivers under 21 can be arrested for driving with a BAC of 0.02% or more. While this violation is not considered a criminal offense, it can result in a 6-month license suspension. The suspension is increased to one year for the second offense. The young driver must undergo a DUI education program if the BAC is 0.05% or more.

Banner media

Legal Help is Here from Leading DUI Defense Lawyers in Florida

The experienced DUI attorneys at Carlson Meissner & Hayslett have the necessary legal knowledge, resources, and determination to pursue a dismissal or reduction of your DUI charges. Our defense team has over 125 years of cumulative experience that we will use to fight for your acquittal, no matter how severe or minor your DUI charge may be. Call (727) 306-0273 or write to us online to schedule your free consultation today.

Free Case Evaluation Contact us today to learn how we can help you navigate your legal concerns.

This field is required.
This field is required.
This field is required.
This field is required.
This field is required.
This field is required.
This field is required.
This field is required.
Get Started
Contact us media
Accessibility: If you are vision-impaired or have some other impairment covered by the Americans with Disabilities Act or a similar law, and you wish to discuss potential accommodations related to using this website, please contact our Accessibility Manager at (727) 306-0273.
Contact Us