DUI Laws in Washington


Washington’s Department of License along with the states highway patrol has gone through great lengths to educate and remand Washington drivers about the dangers of drinking alcohol and driving. They emphasize the fact that alcohol impairs your judgment and increases your chances of being in an accident that can lead to severe injury or even death.

How is a DUI Determined in Washington?

If a Washington state driver is seen exhibiting uncharacteristic driving pattern, they can be pulled over by a police officer on the suspicion of a Washington DUI. In the first instance, the driver can expect to be interviewed by the officer. They will be interested in knowing if they had been drinking. If not convinced by your answer, they will request that you subject yourself to s field sobriety test to determine your blood alcohol content. If your BAC exceeds 0.08% for adults and 0.02% for minors, you will be arrested for a DUI.

Under the Implied Consent Law, if the request for a field sobriety test is refused, the driver will automatically have their driver’s license suspended.

Washington DUI Hearing

If the arresting officer has gathered enough evidence that can build a DUI case against you, your file will be forwarded to the prosecutor for the case to be heard in court. During your Washington DUI hearing, the court will decide:

  • If you were legally arrested
  • On what grounds were your DUI suspicion established. Meaning, if you were actually in control of the vehicle while under the influence.
  • If you were advised about your rights
  • Whether your BAC exceeded the legal limits
  • Whether the breathalyzer test were administered according to Washington State Toxicology rules.

Consequences of Washington State DUIs

  • Washington State First time DUI Offenders: The state of Washington gives first time offenders an opportunity to recover from their irresponsible behavior by imposing fines that gives them an idea of what is to come if the act is repeated. First time offenders can expect if convicted to pay a minimum fine of $865.5 and some jail time ranging from 24 hours up to a year. They also will have electronic home monitoring for at least 15 days and a license suspension for up to 90 days.

If however, their BAC level had exceeded 0.15% the fines and fines and jail time are increased to 30 days electronic home monitoring, a fine ranging from !1120.5 to %500 and license suspension for up to 90 days.

  • Washington Repeat DUI Offenders: A repeat DUI in Washington is considered an insult to the laws and statutes of the state and are dealt with harshly. Second time offenders can expect a jail time between and month to a year, electronic home monitoring for at least 90 days and license suspension for 2 years. If the driver’s BAC level had exceeded 0.15% on their second DUI, the fines and suspensions are increased dramatically.

Third time offenders will receive jail time ranging from three months to a year, 150 days of home monitoring, suspension of their driver’s license for three years and the installation of an ignition interlock device.

Originally posted 2016-12-11 14:58:14.