DUI & DWI in Missouri
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If you drive while under the influence of alcohol, you risk your own life and the lives of every other motorist on the road. For this reason, the Missouri Department of Revenue's Driver Licensing Division has the authority to take away your driving privileges if you are found guilty of a Driving While Intoxicated (DWI) charge.
According to Missouri law, drivers younger than 21 years of age will lose their driving privileges if they are found guilty of any of the following offenses:
- Purchasing alcoholic beverages
- Attempting to purchase alcoholic beverages
- Being in possession of alcoholic beverages
- Being visibly intoxicated
- Having a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) level of more than .020%
If you are 21 or older and found guilty of driving with a BAC of .08% or more, you'll lose your Missouri driver's license for 30 days and have a restricted license for an additional 60 days. You may also be required to spend up to six months in jail and pay a fine of up to $500.
If you are involved in an auto accident that results in death or serious injury because of your impaired driving ability, you will be subjected to additional penalties. You could spend two to seven years in jail, be required to pay a $5,000 fine, and/or lose your Missouri driver's license for five years.
To get your license reinstated after a DWI conviction, you'll need to complete a Substance Abuse Traffic Offender Program, pay a $45 reinstatement fee, and provide SR-22 proof of insurance for two years. The conviction will not be erased from your driving record.
If a Missouri law enforcement officer asks you to take a test to find out your BAC level, you are legally required to comply with his/her request. If you refuse, your license will be taken away for one year. To get your license reinstated, you'll need to complete a Substance Abuse Traffic Offender Program and pay a $45 reinstatement fee.
As part of the state's commitment to protecting motorists, the Missouri Department of Revenue's Driver Licensing Division has the authority to request that any person convicted of a DWI be required to use an ignition interlock device in his/her vehicle. However, ignition interlocks are mandatory in the event of a second conviction.
An ignition interlock device conducts an alcohol breath test before allowing you to start your vehicle. You will have to install this device at your own expense and pay a monthly maintenance fee to insure that it is working properly.
If you are charged with a DWI you might also consider getting legal representation.
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