Alabama’s DUI Law
Alabama’s DUI laws are fairly straightforward, however you need a skilled and experienced attorney to navigate you through the process to ensure you get the best possible outcome. Although a DUI is technically a violation of the vehicle code and similar to a traffic ticket, it is a misdemeanor, and considered by many to be a major criminal violation.
Section 32-5A-191: Driving while under influence of alcohol, controlled substances, etc.
(a) A person shall not drive or be in actual physical control of any vehicle while:
(1) There is 0.08 percent or more by weight of alcohol in his or her blood;
(2) Under the influence of alcohol;
(3) Under the influence of a controlled substance to a degree which renders him or her incapable of safely driving;
(4) Under the combined influence of alcohol and a controlled substance to a degree which renders him or her incapable of safely driving; or
(5) Under the influence of any substance which impairs the mental or physical faculties of such person to a degree which renders him or her incapable of safely driving.
What happens if I am convicted of a DUI?
Anyone convicted of DUI in Alabama is required to complete a DUI or substance abuse court referral program. This program is like being on probation. These require a person to:
For up to one (1) year:
- Check in weekly or monthly with a Court Referral Officer (CRO).
- Show up on time to all court appearances.
- Stay drug and alcohol free during the program.
- Submit to random drug and alcohol tests.
- Pay for random drug and alcohol tests.
- Perform community service hours.
- Pay fines and court costs, and the costs of the Court Referral program.
- Pay Restitution.
- Attend self-help meetings including Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous.
- Obtain employment.
- Obtain a GED.
- Obey all laws and not pick up any new criminal charges or major traffic violations.
This program must be completed before the Department of Public Safety will reissue a suspended driver’s license.
The penalties for conviction of DUI are as follows:
- Imprisonment – Up to 1 year in municipal or county jail (no minimum mandatory sentence)
- Fine – $500 – $2,000, plus an additional $100 fine assessed for Impaired Drivers Trust Fund (§32-5A-191.1)
- Mandatory – 90-day drivers license suspension, DUI school attendance
- Imprisonment – 48 consecutive hours, up to 1 year, or not less than 20 days community service
- Fine – $1,000 – $5,000, plus an additional $100 fine assessed for Impaired Drivers Trust Fund (§32-5A-191.1)
- Mandatory – Not less than 48 hours consecutive imprisonment, or community service of not less than 20 days
- Drivers License Suspension – 1 year
Third Conviction Within 5 Years:
- Imprisonment – 60 days in municipal or county jail, up to 1 year
- Mandatory – 60-day imprisonment which cannot be probated or suspended
- Fine – $2,000 – $10,000, plus an additional $100 fine assessed for Impaired Drivers Trust Fund (§32-5A-191.1)
- DL Revocation – 3 years
Fourth or Subsequent Conviction Within 5 Years – Class C Felony (§32-5A-191):
- Imprisonment – 1-10 years
- Fine – $4,000 – $10,000
- DL Revocation – 5 years
The Alabama Code Section on DUI may be found here: Driving Under the Influence.
For information about additional penalties, including Alabama’s Ignition Interlock law, please see our section on Ignition Interlock.
You need to speak with an Alabama criminal defense attorney right away to prevent the many consequences that can come from being convicted of a DUI.