DUI/OVI in Ohio
In Ohio, the offense of drunk driving or driving under the influence (DUI) is called an OVI, which stands for “Operating a vehicle under the influence of alcohol or drugs.”
The legal BAC (Blood Alcohol Content) in Ohio is .08%. A Blood Alcohol Content of .17% or higher is considered a “high test,” which could result in greater penalties and greater restrictions on driving privileges.
After a DUI/OVI arrest, you first court appearance will be your arraignment and will occur within 5 days of your arrest. At the arraignment, the court they will inform you of the charges brought against and of your right to a Columbus DUI attorney. At the arraignment, you will have the opportunity to enter a plea of “not guilty,” “no contest” or “guilty.”
Many people believe that entering a “guilty” plea will result in them receiving leniency from the judge. You DO NOT want to enter a plea of guilty just to keep the judge happy. If you wish to challenge the DUI/OVI charges, you should plead “not guilty.” If you plead “guilty” or “no contest,” you are forfeiting your right to contest the charges and your right to trial.
If you have been charged with a crime, facing a legal proceeding like an arraignment can be confusing and intimidating. Our DUI lawyer will accompany to your arraignment to ensure that you fully understand your rights can help you determine how to plea to your DUI/OVI charge.
DUI/OVI Penalties in Columbus Ohio
First time offenders: you face fines up to $1075, a minimum three days jail or three-day driver intervention program, license suspension ranging from six months to three years, possible yellow plates, a SCRAM (Secure Continuous Remote Alcohol Monitoring) bracelet and six points on your driving record. First time offenders under 21 years of age convicted of Operating a Vehicle After Under Age Consumption (OVUAC) may be subject to jail time, a fine up to $250, a license suspension of between 90 days to two years and four points on their driving record. A probation period will likely be put into affect.
Second DUI/OVI offense within six years: you face up to $1625 in fines, a minimum 10 days in jail (minimum of 20 for a BAC .17% or higher), license suspension ranging from 1 to 5 years, required yellow plates, possible vehicle immobilization, possible SCRAM bracelet and six points on your driving record.
Third DUI/OVI offense within six years: you face up to $2750 in fines, a minimum 30 days in jail (minimum of 60 for a BAC .17% or higher), license suspension ranging from 2 to 10 years, required yellow plates, possible vehicle immobilization, possible SCRAM bracelet and six points on your driving record.
Fourth or Fifth DUI/OVI offense within six years: you face up to $10,000 in fines, a possible prison term, license suspension ranging from 3 to a lifetime, required yellow plates, possible vehicle immobilization and possible SCRAM bracelet and six points on your driving record.