What are the Penalties for a Ohio OVI Conviction?

An OVI is considered to be a very serious offense in Ohio. If you are charged with an OVI then you will be facing severe penalties. Penalties for an Ohio OVI conviction may either be optional or mandatory. Some judges have set their own mandatory penalties which include some of the optional penalties as well.

Penalties for the first offense:
– Incarceration in Jail for a minimum of 3 days
– Driver’s Intervention program (OVI School)
– Monetary fines starting from $375 in addition to court costs.
– Suspension of the Driver’s license for a minimum period of six months. During this period, the driver will have minimum privileges even after the “hard-time” is over.

If the tests of the defendant return “High-End” results or if he/she is guilty of a refusal while he/she had a prior in the previous 20 years then the Jail time will get doubled to 6 days instead of 3 days or the defendant may enroll in a three day driver’s intervention program and spend three days in Jail. Restricted plates will also be made mandatory after the refusal.

Penalties for the second offense:
– Fines starting from $525 in addition to court costs
– Mandatory Incarceration in Jail for ten day consecutively. This punishment will get doubled if the defendant has “high end” test results or if in the past twenty years he has a refusal with a prior.
– Suspension of the Driver’s license for minimum one year. The minimum “Hard time” period during the suspension will be thirty days.
– It is mandatory for the driver to get restricted license plate. These plates have a yellow background and red numbers.
– Mandatory 90-day immobilization of the automobile used if it was titled to the defendant at the time of the offense.

Penalties for the third offense:
– Fines starting from $850 in addition to court costs
– Incarceration in Jail for a month
– Suspension of the Driver’s license by court for a minimum of two years. The “Hard Time” waiting period during this suspension will last for six months. Moreover the driver must also install the ignition disabling device for 181- 365 days.
– It is mandatory for the driver to get restricted license plate. These plates have a yellow background and red numbers.
– It is mandatory that the defendant must forfeit the vehicle if it was titled to him/her during the time offense was committed.
Felony OVI Penalties
– Mandatory Incarceration up to 5 years. Judges are reluctant to keep prisoners for long term in local Jails and so they often opt for mandatory incarceration in State Prison.
– Monitory Fines ranging from $1,350 to $10,500 and more.
– Suspension of Driver’s license from 3 years to a life time. For the first years, the defendant will not have any driving privileges.
– It will be mandatory for the defendant to forfeit the vehicle involved in the felony.
– If the defendant is ever granted driving privileges he must have the mandatory restricted plates.

The judges may also impose any of the misdemeanor OVI offense penalties and community control sanctions written in the Revised Code, Ohio.