The state of Colorado actually has two different categories for impaired drivers: DUI (driving under the influence) and DWAI (driving while ability impaired).
Consequences for Refusing to Take Chemical Tests
As in most states, you can refuse to take the chemical tests, but you are automatically fined and face a license revocation for doing so. With a revocation, you must pass all testing again (whereas a suspension you are given your license back after the penalty has been served).
- First offense – one-year revocation of license
- Second offense – two-year revocation of license
- Third offense – three-year revocation of license
Challenging BAC Levels in Court
Colorado is unique in having both a DUI and DWAI law, which has a lower blood alcohol content (BAC). This is unique in that drivers are penalized for not being at DUI levels, but getting behind the wheel in what would be considered an “impaired” state. These test results are often challenged by attorneys in court based on how long after the initial stop the tests were performed as well as procedures used during the testing.
- Drivers that are 21 years or older, .08 percent for DUI and .05 percent for DWAI
- Drivers under the age of 21, .02 percent
Is There Mandatory Jail Time Required for a DUI in Colorado?
If you are convicted for either DUI or DWAI in Colorado, you will go to jail. Sentencing is significantly higher in this state that in most others for first time convictions.
- First time offenders – DUI, up to one year. DWAI, up to 180 days
- Second time offenders – up to one year for either offense
- Third time offenders – up to one year for either offense
Monetary Fines and Penalties for DUI in Colorado
First time offenders face significant fines, but these monetary fines do not escalate dramatically.
- First offense – up to $1,000 fine for DUI and up to $500 for DWAI
- Second offense – up to $1,500 for either DUI or DWAI
- Third offense – up to $1,500 for DUI and up to $1,000 for DWAI
License Suspension for DUI in Colorado
DWAI offenders are given a break on first violations, but all other offenders will have their license suspended.
- First offense – nine months for a DUI, none for DWAI
- Second offense – one year suspension for either offense
- Third offense – two year suspension for either offense
IID installation is not required for any first time offense, but all repeat offenders are required to use an ignition interlock device.
Finding a DUI Attorney in Colorado
In addition the penalties noted above, Colorado has additional penalties in place for any violations with a previous DUI or DWAI for second time offenders. Colorado also has no washout period, meaning your DUI or DWAI is always on your record for sentencing purposes. That being the case, you should hire a skilled Colorado DUI attorney that can help you fight the case and have the charges dismissed. For more information about local DUI Rights attorneys and having your arrest details examined, fill out the Free DUI Arrest Evaluation Form Now!