What happens when you get a Minnesota DWI?

| Jan 21, 2021 | DUI

Driving while impaired can result in Minnesota criminal charges. Law enforcement can arrest a motorist who has a blood alcohol content of 0.08% or higher or who displays impairment. 

Review the possible consequences of a Minnesota DWI conviction. 

Ignition interlock device requirements

The court may order a convicted person to use an ignition interlock device. This breath-testing mechanism attaches to the car and prevents the engine from starting if the driver has a BAC of at least 0.02%. Minnesota’s IID requirement lasts up to two years for first-time DWIs with BAC of 0.16% or higher and second-time DWI convictions. 

Prison time

Some DWI offenders receive prison sentences in Minnesota. A sentence of up to seven years applies to cases involving vehicular homicide or three DWIs within 10 years. 

Other DWI cases can carry 48 hours to 30 days in jail. However, the court may allow community service in lieu of jail time. 

Substance use treatment

Minnesota judges can order substance use assessments for DWI offenders. If the assessment indicates a clinical diagnosis of substance use disorder, the court can require the person to attend the recommended course of treatment. 

Administrative penalties

This category includes driver’s license suspension and related penalties. An offender may receive a 90-day revocation for a first-time DWI. The person will have to surrender his or her vehicle license plates and install DWI offender plates for DWI with a passenger younger than 16 or BAC of 0.16% or higher. 

These penalties vary based on the circumstances of the person’s case. For example, factors such as refusing a breath test can extend his or her sentence.