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DUI Penalties in South Carolina


Having a blood alcohol content of 0.08% or above makes you liable to be arrested for DUI in South Carolina. A DUI arrest will remain on your criminal record, as will a conviction which could keep you from gaining access to higher education or a desired job.

The Heavy Price of a DUI

Immediate penalties for a first DUI conviction include up to 90 days in jail, up to $1,000 in fines, and a 6 month license suspension. A second conviction can result in up to 3 years behind bars, up to $6,500 in fines, a year-long license suspension, and mandated installation of an ignition interlock device (IID) at the driver's expense. Another DUI is punishable by up to 5 years in jail, up to $10,000 in fines, a 2 years license suspension, and installation of an IID. A fourth offense comes with enormous penalties, including up to 7 years in jail, up to $10,000 in fines and a permanent suspension of your driver's license.

Even with these penalties in mind, it is still not advisable to refuse taking a chemical test to determine your blood alcohol after being stopped. This will result in an automatic suspension of your license for six months.

There is no way to know exactly how many drinks it takes to reach a blood alcohol level of 0.08%. There are a few factors involved in determining your blood alcohol including your weight, sex, body fat percentage and how much time elapsed between drinks. Your safest bet is to refrain from drinking when you plan on driving soon after. You risk your freedom, great financial burdens, and your entire future by drinking and driving.

If you have been arrested for DUI you will need a seasoned Columbia criminal attorney to defend your rights and argue on your behalf in court. Masella Law Firm, PA has over a decade of fighting for people charged with many different offenses.

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