Driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol is a serious criminal offense in Minnesota. Even first-time offenders may find themselves facing steep penalties and other consequences that could affect multiple areas of their lives. Drivers facing a DWI will benefit from understanding the specific penalties they are facing and how they can defend their long-term interests.
The consequences of a DWI
If convicted of a DWI, a driver could jail time, lose driving privileges and more. If the offender has a job that requires operating a vehicle, his or her career could be affected as well. In some cases, a drunk driving conviction can impact job or housing applications, as well as custody or visitation cases. Some of the specific penalties one could face for a DWI in Minnesota include:
- Loss of driver’s license for a minimum of 90 days up to multiple years, plus significant fees to reinstate it
- Mandatory installation of an ignition interlock device
- Time behind bars
First-time offenders who had a blood alcohol content of .16 or higher at the time of their arrest or repeat DWI offenders will be required to install an ignition interlock device in their vehicles.
The importance of a strong defense
One’s future could be at stake after a DWI. It is important to fight the changes, whether it is a first DWI or the defendant has previous convictions on his or her criminal record. Due to the serious nature of even a first drunk driving offense, it is beneficial to work with an experienced Minnesota defense attorney.