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When you face a DUI, it is vital to remember that it is not a situation that law enforcement will take lightly.  A DUI can lead to other individuals being seriously injured or even killed, therefore, the firm advises you to take action toward being knowledgeable of all DUI penalties.  Consequences of a DUI can greatly impact your life, so it is their desire and duty to protect your freedom using their experience and diligence in upholding the law.  Speak with a Columbia DUI attorney from the firm today to schedule your free initial consultation and tell them about your case!


A DUI has two possible processes that can affect your case.  The first is a civil hearing and the second is a criminal hearing.  Each hearing carries severe consequences that can endanger your freedom.  Many situations lead to jail time, fines, and time spent in the South Carolina Alcohol and Drug Safety Program (ADSAP).  In a criminal conviction, you could face the following penalties:

  • License suspension for six months
  • Up to 30 days in jail
  • ADSAP: $500 – $3,000
  • SR-22 insurance for three years
  • Permanent criminal record
  • DUI listed on driving record

A civil conviction does not carry convictions as heavy as a criminal charge does, but they are still serious penalties that should be avoided.  For a civil conviction, you could face the following:

  • License suspension for one to six months
  • Mandatory ADSAP
  • SR-22 insurance for three years
  • Implied consent violation on record


Beyond having your driver’s license suspended, spending time in jail, and obtaining a permanent mark on your criminal or driving record, there are other serious penalties for a DUI conviction.  For those who are caught driving with blood alcohol content (BAC) level of 0.08% or higher, they can be at risk for mandatory alcohol education and assessment.  This is an alcohol instruction and prevention program that is used to help those who are DUI offenders.  This can sometimes replace an incarceration sentence.

The penalties for a DUI often depend on the number of offenses that have been committed.  Law enforcement makes punishment for first DUI offenses severe in order to ensure that the situation does not become a habit.  For first-offense DUIs, your sentence is a minimum of 48 hours and a maximum of 30 days in jail.  If the BAC level is between 0.10% and 0.15%, your jail sentence will be a minimum of 72 hours.  For those who have a reported BAC level of 0.16% or higher on a first offense, the minimum jail sentence is 30 to 90 days.  The penalties will then increase depending on the number of offenses.

If you’ve been charged with a DUI, contact our office immediately.

Law Office of Mathias Chaplin