North Dakota law allows drivers to be convicted of a North Dakota DUI based on one of two theories or a combination of the two. Many times drivers are convicted based solely on the fact that their driving pattern and physical appearance indicated they were impaired by alcohol. On the other hand, the state has a per se law, which states that you cannot drive with a blood alcohol content (BAC) of .08% or higher. Even if you appear to be driving safely, if your BAC is tested and the results are .08% or higher, you will be convicted of DUI.DUI Arrests in North Dakota
If you are arrested on suspicion of DUI in North Dakota, you need to contact a lawyer as soon as possible. You will be facing two separate cases as a result of your arrest. The first case is a pre-conviction administrative case, and the second is the criminal court case. During both of these cases, you will want a lawyer representing your case in the best possible light. Even if you have BAC test results that indicate that you were driving drunk, you will not be convicted automatically. Your lawyer may be able to prove that you were not tested correctly or that too much time passed between your arrest and your test, thus invalidating the results.
You may have chosen to refuse to take the BAC test. This does not mean that you cannot go to trial, and the refusal can be used against you in trail. You may also face additional punishments as a result of refusing to take the BAC test.Basic Consequences for First Time Offenders
If you are convicted of a DUI in North Dakota and it is your first one, you can expect to face the following:
Subsequent convictions will bring more consequences, including jail time. Jail time is allowed for first-time offenders, but is rarely used. You may be treated as a first-time offender even if there are prior DUI convictions on your record. The court is only allowed to look back on your record for the past seven years when determining whether or not you are a first-time DUI offender.License Suspension for North Dakota DUI
Your right to drive is also at risk as a result of your North Dakota DUI conviction. Typical license suspension times are as follows:
Your license will be suspended for at least a year if you refuse to take the BAC test. Your vehicle can be confiscated after your second offense. The cost to get your license back is $50. You may be able to apply for a work permit that allows you to drive to work and your court-ordered treatments. The cost for this permit is $50, and it is only available after a first offense.Insurance Consequences
When you are ready to apply to have your license reinstated, you will have to prove that you are adequately insured. This can be difficult, however, because your insurance carrier may drop your coverage as a result of your North Dakota DUI conviction. Your rates will increase if your coverage is not dropped. These penalties may carry over to other members of your family who share your policy. You will also find that your DUI conviction haunts you if you choose to shop for a new insurance provider.