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Kentucky DUI Laws

In the state of Kentucky it is unlawful to operate or drive a motor vehicle with a Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) of 0.08. This BAC must be taken within two hours of the offense. It is also unlawful to drive or operate a motor vehicle with any combination of drugs or alcohol which impairs one’s ability to operate such motor vehicle. The first DUI conviction is a Class-B misdemeanor and carries an imprisonment sentence of two days and up to thirty days. The fines imposed on one convicted of DUI for the first time is between two-hundred and five-hundred dollars. One may also have his/her license suspended for a period of thirty to one-hundred twenty days. Varies other penalties may include a substance abuse program and community service.

A second DUI conviction within five years of a previous conviction is also a misdemeanor, but the penalties are slightly higher. The jail sentence for a second offense is between seven days and six months. The fines for the second offense are between three-hundred fifty dollars and five-hundred dollars. One convicted of a second DUI within five years of a previous conviction will be subject to a license suspension of no less than one year and no more than eighteen months. It is still a misdemeanor when one is convicted of a third subsequent offense, but as with a second offense the penalties are steeper. A third offense carries a jail sentence of thirty days and up to one year. The fines are also higher, starting at a minimum fine of five-hundred dollars and a maximum fine of up to one-thousand dollars. A third offense has a license suspension for a period of two or three years.

A DUI becomes a Class D felony upon the fourth conviction within five years. Anyone convicted of a felony DUI will be sentenced to a minimum of one-hundred twenty days. Also, a felony DUI carries a license suspension of up to five years. This license suspension may also require an ignition interlock device to be installed on a vehicle once one’s license is reinstated. For any DUI conviction varies other penalties may be imposed, such as: community service and substance abuse education. All penalties are left up to the court and the maximum penalty is not always enforced. All penalties may be enhanced when aggravating circumstance are involved. Aggravating circumstances include: driving the wrong way on the highway, causing an accident, having a BAC at or above 0.18, refusing a chemical test, exceeding the speed limit by thirty miles per hour or more, and having a passenger under the age of twelve.

Also DUI does not always mean one was found to have alcohol in his/her system. One can be found guilty of DUI if found to have specific controlled substances in his/her system. These controlled substances consist of: Alprazolam, Amphetamine, Buprenorphine, Butalbital, Carisoprodol, Cocaine, Diazepam, Hydrocodone, Meprobamate, Methadone, Methamphetamine, Oxycodone, Promethazine, Propoxyphene, and Zolpidem.


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