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Penalties for DUI in Indiana

Indiana law provides for a range of penalties according to the severity of the violation of the state’s DUI laws. If a driver is caught with a blood alcohol level greater than 0.08 grams, but less than 0.15 grams, of alcohol per 100 milliliters of blood or 210 liters of breath, the driver has committed a Class C misdemeanor. Driving under the influence of a prohibited controlled substance is also a Class C misdemeanor. Class C misdemeanors are punishable by up to sixty days in prison and a fine not exceeding $500.  However, if the driver endangers another person or himself/herself while operating the motor vehicle the crime becomes a Class A misdemeanor and punishable by a maximum one-year sentence in prison and a maximum $5000 fine. The driver may also be assigned community service. Convicted drivers must pay the $300 in court costs, and may have their licenses suspended for up to 2 years.  Convicted drivers may also be required to attend a victim impact panel; enroll in, pay for and attend a substance abuse court; install an ignition interlock device on their cars; and/or submit to alcohol and drug conditions or other conditions of parole.

If a driver is caught with a blood alcohol level greater than or equal to 0.15 grams of alcohol per 100 milliliters of blood or 210 liters of breath, the driver has committed a Class A misdemeanor. Class A misdemeanors are punishable by up to a year in prison and a fine not exceeding $5000.

If the driver has been previously convicted for a DUI offense within the past five years, a second violation within that five-year span is charged as a Class D felony. Class D felonies are punishable by a minimum 5-day sentence and a maximum sentence of three years in prison and a fine not exceeding $1000. The driver may also be assigned community service. Convicted drivers must pay the $300 in court costs, and may have their licenses suspended for up to 2 years.  Convicted drivers may also be required to attend a victim impact panel; enroll in, pay for and attend a substance abuse court; install an ignition interlock device on their cars; and/or submit to alcohol and drug conditions or other conditions of parole. For a third offense in five years, the punishments are the same except the driver must spend between ten days and three years in jail, and the driver’s license will be suspended for 1-10 years. Additionally, the driver will be adjudged a habitual traffic violator and may be imprisoned for an additional 1-8 years.

If the driver causes serious bodily injury to another person while operating the motor vehicle with at least an 8% blood alcohol content or under the influence of controlled substances, the driver commits a Class D felony. Each injured person counts as a separate offense. If the driver has had a previous, unrelated conviction in the last 5 years, the charge is increased to a Class C felony. Class C felonies are punishable by a maximum of 8 years in prison and a maximum $10,000 fine.

If the driver kills another person while operating the motor vehicle with at least an 8% blood alcohol content or under the influence of controlled substances, the driver commits a Class C felony. Each injured person counts as a separate offense. If the driver has had a previous, DUI conviction in the last 5 years, the charge is increased to a Class B felony. Class B felonies are punishable by a maximum of 20 years in prison and a maximum $10,000 fine.

Persons under the age of 21, caught with a blood alcohol content between 2% and 8% commit a Class C infraction. Such persons face a one-year suspension of their licenses and $500 in fines.

Persons driving under a commercial driver’s license have the licenses revoked on a first offense (with a minimum BAC of 4%). On a second offense, the driver’s commercial driver’s license is revoked for life.


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