Getting Through A DUI Checkpoint

Getting Through A DUI Checkpoint

Getting Through A DUI Checkpoint – In some states, police set up roadblocks and stop drivers to search for signs of intoxication. If the officers have reasonable suspicion that you are driving under the influence, they will ask you to pull over to investigate further. Generally, your encounter will last less than a minute, during which the officer may ask to see your driver’s license and registration. They will also probably ask if you have been drinking. If you are pulled over for further questioning, you can protect your rights by remaining silent and declining a field sobriety test.


Passing Through the Checkpoint

    Avoid the checkpoint if possible. You aren’t legally required to go through a checkpoint if you see one up ahead. Instead, you can pull onto a side road or do a U-turn, if legal.

    • Don’t break the law to avoid the checkpoint. For example, you must use proper turn signals, drive at a safe speed, and observe all other traffic laws. If you don’t, then the police have a reason to pull you over. And once you are pulled over, they can give you a chemical test if they suspect you have had too much to drink.
    • The police will scrutinize any vehicles that evade the checkpoint, so make sure to drive properly.
  2. Slow down as you approach the checkpoint. Once you see the checkpoint up ahead, you should slow your vehicle. You cannot speed through the checkpoint, which will give the police reason to chase you down and pull you over.

    • Many police now disguise checkpoints as construction zones. For example, they will put up orange cones and construction signs. This is done to prevent you from avoiding the checkpoint.
    • In some states, police must advertise where they will set up checkpoints. For example, they may publish a notice in the newspaper. You can also download apps, such as PhantomAlert, that will alert you of DUI checkpoints.
  3.  Guess how much you’ve been drinking. If you haven’t been drinking alcohol, you have nothing to fear from a DUI checkpoint. However, you might have been drinking. If so, be aware the police can ask you to pull over, where they will administer a field sobriety test or a breath test. The legal blood alcohol concentration (BAC) in all 50 states is 0.080.
    • Generally, a 160-pound person will have a BAC of 0.080 after four drinks. A drink is 1.5 ounces of hard liquor, 5 ounces of wine, or 12 ounces of beer.
    • By contrast, a 120-pound person will have a BAC of 0.081 after consuming three drinks.
    • Other factors influence your BAC, such as whether you had the drinks with a meal and when you drank them.

  4. Roll down your window.
    You should cooperate during the DUI checkpoint. This means coming to a complete stop and rolling down your window. If you don’t, then the officer’s suspicion might increase that you are hiding criminal activity.

    • The officer will want to bend down close to your window so that they can take a peek inside and also smell your breath. If you are transporting anything you don’t want the cops to see, it should be stowed under your seats.
    • You can try to mask alcohol on your breath with a breath mint. However, alcohol is in your lungs after you drink, and the “alcohol breath” you smell comes up from your lungs when you breathe. A mint might mask some of the smell but only briefly.
  5. Hand over your license. You must show that you are legally allowed to drive in your state, so you will need to hand over your driver’s license and registration. You should have them handy so that you aren’t fumbling to find them.

    • A cop might interpret fumbling as lack of coordination due to alcohol consumption. Make sure you have your registration and license nearby so you can easily hand them over.
    • You may also have to turn over proof of insurance, so have it nearby as well.
    Choose whether to admit to drinking. The purpose of the checkpoint is to find drunk drivers, so you can expect the officer to ask you if you have been drinking. You have a constitutional right not to answer.However, if you haven’t been drinking, then you should admit that: “No, officer, I haven’t been drinking.”

    • If you have been drinking, you probably are best of saying simply, “I don’t want to answer that.” Remember not to argue or be rude.
    • When answering, look away from the officer. If you talk, the officer will try to get a good sniff of your breath. If they detect alcohol, then they will ask you to pull over for further questioning.
    • Avoid saying, “I only had one drink” or “I stopped drinking several hours ago.” Any admission of drinking could be used against you.
  7. Do not consent to a search. Although checkpoints are legal in many states, the police are limited in what they can do. Nevertheless, some officers might push their luck. For example, they might ask if they can search your car or trunk. Politely decline: “I’m sorry. No.”

    • The officer also might stick their head into your car or point a flashlight into it and wave it around. They are not supposed to enter your vehicle at the checkpoint. Politely ask them not to invade your space or wave a flashlight around.
  8. Drive away when given permission. If nothing goes wrong, you should be sent on your way in less than a minute. The average checkpoint stop lasts about as long as a red light at an intersection.

    • Remember not to drive off until the police officer tells you it is okay. When in doubt, ask, “Can I leave now?”
    • Observe all traffic rules as you pull away. Don’t speed or make sudden movements. Use your blinker.

Undergoing Further Questioning

  1. Pull over, if requested. When you go through the checkpoint, the police can ask you to pull over if they have a reasonable suspicion of criminal activity (such as drunk driving). As a rule, they cannot ask you to pull over unless they have this suspicion.

    • From the moment the police ask you to pull over, you must understand the police are in control of the situation. You should generally comply with their requests—unless you have a valid reason not to.
    • Try to remain calm throughout the encounter. The more nervous you are, the more suspicious you will look. Take a couple of deep breaths as you pull your car over.
    Choose whether to take the field sobriety tests. These tests usually involve walking on a white line or balancing on one foot. In many states, you are not required to take these tests.  However, the officer might arrest you if you decline. The problem with these tests is that many sober people fail them.

    • If you have been drinking, you really don’t want to give the officer more evidence to use against you.Accordingly, you should politely decline. Say, “I’m sorry, my lawyer has advised me against taking these tests.”
  3. Consider taking a chemical test. You aren’t required to take a breathalyzer or other chemical test, either. However, there may be negative consequences for declining. You should think carefully about your choice.

    • For example, you could lose your license for a certain amount of time. Driving is a privilege, not a right. And your state can make a driver’s license conditional on your consent to chemical tests. These are called “implied consent laws.” In California, for example, you can lose your license for up to a year if you decline.
    • You might want to decline if you already have a DUI on your record. There’s no reason to give the police more evidence to use against you.
    • Even if you decline, the police can get a warrant for a blood test, which they can administer against your will. So refusing a chemical test might only buy you some time.
  4. Remain silent. You aren’t required to answer any questions other than to identify yourself by handing over your license. Refuse to do any kind of verbal test, such as counting backwards or reciting the alphabet backwards. You might think you can talk your way out of a ticket, but you’d be wrong.

    • Also don’t provide details about how much you have been drinking. Instead, say, “I don’t recall” or “I haven’t been drinking.”
    • You can also clarify you won’t be answering any questions. You can say, “I’m sorry, officer, but my lawyer has advised me to remain silent when pulled over.” Then stay silent. Simply smile if the officer asks another question.
  5. Ask if you can leave. The officer cannot hold you indefinitely. If your BAC comes in under the legal limit, the officer should let you go.Furthermore, the officer can only arrest you if they have probable cause that you broke the law.

    • Asking to leave is not the same as taking it upon yourself to leave. Don’t throw the car into drive and pull away. Don’t even walk away from the officer. Instead, stand there and ask if you are free to go.
    • If the cop ignores your question, continue to ask it: “Can I leave now?” Always remain polite but persistent.
  6. Request a lawyer if arrested. The police might arrest you if they have probable cause to believe you were driving while intoxicated. If so, you should continue to refuse to answer their questions. Furthermore, you should explicitly say, “I want a lawyer, and I won’t answer any questions until I have a lawyer present.”

    • Police must stop all questioning once you request a lawyer.   However, you can’t voluntarily start talking about the incident. If you do, the police can start up the questioning again.
  7. Call a lawyer. Once taken to the police station, you’ll be booked. This usually involves turning over personal belongings and having fingerprints and your picture taken. At some point, you should be given a chance to call a lawyer using a phone at the jail.

    • If you don’t know the name of a lawyer, then call someone who you know is home. Ask them to get an attorney and tell them where you are located.
    • Some stations might have a list of lawyers you can look through.
    • If you aren’t given a chance to call a lawyer, then you might be able to ask for one when taken before the judge for your initial appearance or arraignment.
    • When you talk to your lawyer or family on the phone, admit nothing. The jailhouse phones are usually bugged.
Texas state law regarding ignition interlock devices

Texas State law regarding ignition interlock devices

Texas State law regarding ignition interlock devices

Texas State law regarding ignition interlock devices – According to MADD, the state of Texas is the leader in fatalities cause by drunken driving.  In the past year, a whopping 1,446 fatalities were reported as a result of DUI. 

Clearly this calls for care and mindfulness when considering if to drink and drive or not.  What starts out as a good time can easily turn into a tragic affair no one had anticipated.

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Average Costs Of A DUI Or DWI Arrest And Conviction

Average Costs of a DUI or DWI Arrest and Conviction

A standard drink at the bar is sweet during consumption. But not as sweet as average costs of a DUI.  Please do not ignore your body signals you when getting impaired. This is not all, you feel motivated to drive your way back and ignore the need of a designated driver. There is a good chance that you end up in an at-fault accident.  Or pulled over by an arresting officer for driving under impairment.

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Using Special Yellow License Plates for DUI Offenders

Using Special Colored License Plates for DUI Offenders

Using Special Colored License Plates for DUI offenders

Specialty license plates for DUI Offenders –  It is now clear that revoking or suspending the driving privileges is a common penalty for DUI offenders. Despite a license suspension or revocation, these offenders get a provisional license which puts them back on the roads. It is very usual to find them getting more traffic citations and even causing accidents while impaired. The NHTSA encourages States to enact the use of Special License Plates to reduce this problem and hinder future driving especially when the offender is under license suspension or revocation.

DUI offenders are everywhere and it is not easy to identify them from the back of the wheels without the special plates. A certain number of states in America have special license plates for drunk driving offenders.  The plates are different in the sense of bearing numbers and letters that are limited to the penalties they receive from a court order. Special plates can be considered as a penalty that when used can help the DUI offender reduce his or her mandatory suspension period.

In Iowa, these special plates contain a “Z” in the series of numbers – one applies to get this type of vehicle plate. If your driver’s license is revoked in Minnesota, you will have to surrender your registration to the court. A special plate is issued if a member of the offender’s family has a valid license. In Ohio, the case is not different, the offenders get restricted license plates which are red and yellow in color. A special sticker is placed on the offender’s vehicle plates if it happens to be in Oregon.

This mandate is given to the departments of transportation: Authorities which get to design and issue Special License Plate – in some states the commissioner of motor vehicles is responsible for issuing these plates. The difference between the restricted driver motor vehicle registration plates and the regular registration plates are in form of:

  • Alphanumeric characters
  • Colors
  • Special sequence of letters – this is mostly for hardcore drunk driving

In Minnesota, the special DUI plates are known as whiskey plates. It is not applicable in all the states but some make it a requirement to DUI second or subsequent offenders. The period of use is mostly the same as the suspension mandatory period. Apart from the issuance of the special plates, other states may decide to make the following decisions:

  • Remove and impound the offender’s license plates
  • Order for the installation of alcohol ignition interlock devices
  • The convicted vehicle may be forfeited, immobilized (with a club or boot) or sold

According to NHTSA statistics, many second ‑ and third‑time DWI offenders accumulate traffic offenses and are involved in crashes even when their licenses are suspended. DUI recidivism has been substantially reduced after the introduction of these penalties in most of the states. The plates can be used to identify driver to the residents and the police. This gives caution to anyone that spots the vehicle.

Let’s make it clear on what you are to expect when you are arrested for a DUI in most of the American states. A DUI in full means driving under the influence and is quite different from Driving while intoxicated (DWI) in terms of age. So if you are below the age of 21, you will be convicted for DUI with any amount of detected amount of alcohol in the system. Sometimes the minor drivers end up being charged under a DWI if they exceed the 0.08% BAC or more limit.

Under the implied consent law, it is a crime to drive under intoxication. Therefore, one has no other obligation but to take a chemical test when they are under arrest. It is optional to take a Sobriety Test, but if you think that you are not in the right condition to pass the tests you can opt not to. This does not mean that you will not be arrested for a DUI. The available chemical test results will be used against you if you test positive for alcohol.

Under the Zero Tolerance Law the driver under age 21 loses his or her driver license and gets suspended for a certain period of time. When you file for a hearing, then you will be subjected to two suspension from the court sanction and the DMV authorities. If the DMV suspension or revocation is as a result of administrative action, then it is known as an Administrative Per Se (APS) – it is independent of the court rulings. One might be set aside but it will depend on the type of violation you have committed.

You will definitely get your driver’s license back when you have completed the mandatory period, paid the fines or fees and participated in the penalties that come with your court ruling. The penalties required by the court will depend on the type of violation. Your case will become a felony conviction if you:

  1. You are arrested for impaired driving-related criminal vehicular homicide or injury.
  2. Are arrested for your fourth DUI in a 10-year period.
  3. Have previously been convicted of a felony DUI.
  4. Moving violation
  5. Reckless driving
  6. Are arrested in the presence of a passenger in the vehicle under the age of 16

The penalties for the felony offenders are harsh and may include years of imprisonment and high fines. Rehabilitation and probation is a must for subsequent offenders. First offenders get to make a choice between limited license and ignition interlock. The use of ignition interlock devices for second offenders and subsequent convictions are not optional. The duration of using the IIDs will depend on the offense level- they range from 1-2 years.

An ignition interlock device is installed in the vehicle and it will require the user to provide a breath sample to start the vehicle. In simple terms, the vehicle will not start when you are impaired. Some people might use other schemes to go around the use of the devices but the new ones are improved. Additional penalties can be released if the data received from the IIDs suggest that you made certain attempts of starting your vehicle and it could not start. If you tried to destroy the device, then you could be in trouble if it is recorded.

Since the introduction of the ignition interlock device there has been a drastic reduction of alcohol traffic violation. This is good news to the nation as more and more states get encouraged to include the device in penalties. The main purpose of installing this device is to completely deny the driver access to his or her driving privileges when under the influence of alcohol. The provision for special license plates in some states allows a permit officer to stop the vehicle and check whether the driver is abiding to the suspension requirement. This allows the States to monitor the use of the sanctions.

To get your license back you will need to pay the proposed reinstatement fee, show that you have passed the DUI school test, ensure that you provide the driver’s license application fees, and submit chemical health assessment. You will not be denied the rights of driving since you can apply for a restricted license which will help you drive from home to work or school and back.

The Consequences of a DUI Conviction

  First-Time Convictions Prior Convictions
Service  in jail 1-3 days Depend on the level of offence
Fines Depend upon the state  
Education attend mandatory DUI school attend DUI school
License suspension up to a year Range from 1 – 5 years
ignition interlock installation Optional Required
Information probation Up to 3 years.  

DUI penalties are less in first time non‑injury DUIs as compared to subsequent DUI convictions. The special plates can also apply to motorbike users since the definition of vehicles requires that the device moves upon a public highway. This capability of a property or person to be transported or drawn upon a public highway makes it a vehicle.

During the suspension period, you are required to install an ignition interlock device on your motorbike to get a provisional or limited license- this applies in some states. There is no exception, you will have to face similar penalties with car and truck drivers. If the state does not allow IIDs, then you will be required not to ride a motorcycle until your revocation is over. The interlock law will be required if you intend on driving cars during the suspension period.

It is quite embarrassing being branded by using special license plates. This adds to other penalties such as increased premiums when you are automatically considered as a high-risk driver by the State DMV. These unique license plates should be used on all the cars owned by the offender until the driving privileges are reinstated.

Since the States allow the arresting officers to pull over drivers using the special plates to check if their driver’s license is in a good state. These plates could cost the drivers an additional cost of up to $100. This is indeed good incentive for drivers who need to think before drinking and driving. It also helps the authority to be on the lookout for DUI repeat offenders. If on average a DUI first offender has driven 87 times while intoxicated. This is a clear fact that the offenders are likely to repeat a DUI.

In the case that the car owner is not guilty of a DUI but his or her car was involved, the use of special plates still apply unless he or she files a sworn statement. If the driver does not have a car and one of the family members owns one then someone must apply for a special plate. You are not allowed to apply for new registration plates until you have completed a certain period of use. You may also receive your registration plate if the state decides to issue you a valid driver’s license.

If a state opts for a license plate impoundment, then such certain circumstances the authority has the mandate to take the license plates off the vehicle involved in a DUI. Acting on behalf of the Commissioner of Public Safety, the arresting officer is allowed to order for a license plate impound. Apart from the state Department of Public Safety, the judge also has the mandate to make such orders. In most cases, the impound order leads to the application of special plates when a provisional driver’s licenses have been issued.

If a family member wants to drive the impounded vehicle and has a valid driver’s license, he or she will require special plates to use it. Plate impoundment can be challenged in court, one should apply for the hearing within 30 days of receiving notice. An administrative review or a judicial review is required if the vehicle is impounded by mistake. This process is similar to an implied consent traffic law hearing. The least number of years one is expected to use the special plates is 1 year.

Most of the DUI offenders get their valid driver’s license if they participate in interlock ignition device programs and the use of special plates. These two penalties are at times used together especially in subsequent DUI convictions. To reduce the stigma caused by tagging the convicted drivers, most states opt for Ignition interlock devices. This device will in the future become mandatory to all the states in America.

The cost of renting an interlock ignition device can amount to less than $500(this is a rough estimate, the rate might be between 50$-100$ per month lease depending on where you are geographically located) if it is to be used for a period of 1 year. However, this does not account for the cost of installation which involves paying for:

  • The device installation
  • Device removal
  • Device calibration and maintenance

Before installing an ignition interlock device you are required to identify the certified installers from your state DMV website. The installer is required to cooperate with the state in terms of relaying information. The installer has to send proof of installation to the relevant authority. You are also required to obtain an Ignition Interlock Driver License (IIL) before using your vehicle on the road again. The state law determines the length of time of using the Ignition Interlock law.

The rolling-retest feature of the IIDs makes it tough for the convicted driver from using tricks on the device. Business people, convicted of DUI require the installation of ignition interlock device before they apply for a restricted license for work purpose that requires frequently driving. Ignition Interlock requirement increases with the increase in DUI Conviction: zero tolerance laws.

Apart from being embarrassed when using the interlock device and the special plates, there are added costs. Certain qualifications are required to be met if you need the State to help assist you financially to help cover your ignition interlock cost. This aid caters for installation, removal, and monthly lease fee of the device. The cost of alcohol-related driving offense is extremely high that is why some of the first offenders do not make a mistake of repeating the mistake. 

Mothers against Drunk Driving (MADD), a nonprofit organization, compared the effect of license suspension and interlock device installation on the reduction of repeat drunk driving offenses. They found out that the use of IIDs in vehicles can reduce the number of repeat drunk driving offenses by 67%. What if the device was used in conjunction with the special plates?

It is clear now that drivers using special license plates and ignition interlock users for DUI offense get enough stigma and helps in fighting DUI recidivism. It is likely that you will require an SR22/FR44/SR50/SR22A to reinstate your driver’s license. Select Insurance Group gives you a chance to get back on the road with ease when you fill the auto quote form.

If you have questions, don’t hesitate to call: 877-949-7873 or 855-GET-SELECT (855-438-7353). One of our licensed agents will help you right away.

How to reinstate driver's license after DUI in Ohio?

How to reinstate driver’s license after DUI in Ohio?

How to reinstate driver’s license after DUI in Ohio?

How to reinstate driver’s license after DUI in Ohio? If you have come across terms like OVI when looking up DUI penalties in the state of Ohio, do not get confused. In Ohio, what is popularly referred to as DUI is referred to as OVI meaning, operating a vehicle under the Influence. 

According the Ohio State Highway Patrol’s records, the past five months in the 2016 have report a high rate of DUI reporting 10,586 offences. This is a higher figure compared to the 9,230 reported in the year 2015. These statics clearly indicate the seriousness of DUI. It is no wonder then that the law in Ohio treats DUI cases with the seriousness it deserves.

What qualifies as a DUI in the state of Ohio?

Different states have different alcohol concentrations that they treat as acceptable in their jurisdictions. Ohio like many other states has the following BAC level guidelines as a deciding factor of a DUI.

  • For people under the age of 21 years, .02% BAC
  • For people over 21 Years, .08% BAC
  • For commercial drivers, .04% BAC.

If you fall under any of the categories stated and have a BAC level equal to or higher than the specified levels, then you are DUI in Ohio.

Note: BAC refers to blood alcohol concentration levels.

BAC tests are either done by breathalyzers, urine tests or blood tests. For you to be charged with a DUI, there can be no doubt as to your state of drunkenness at the time of arrest. What are the penalties of OVI/DUI in Ohio?

  Jail time Fines License suspension IID requirement
1st DUI 3 days – 6 months $250-$1,000 6 months – 1 year Not required
2nd DUI 10 days – 1 year $350-$1,500 1-5 years Not required
3rd DUI 1 month – 1 year $350-$1,500 1-10 years Required
4th DUI 2 months – 1 year $800-$10,000 3 years to life Required

For minors:

1st DUI

2nd DUI

10 days – 1 year

Up to 1 year

$500 to $1,000

$350 to $1,500

6 months to 3 years

1-5 years




1st DUI

2nd DUI

Not specified

Not specified

Not specified

Not specified

Up to 1 year




Vehicular DUI Up to 15 years Not specified Life NO-applicable

Ohio operates an ‘implied consent’ law. What this means generally, is there is a general assumption that if you are stopped, and asked to take a BAC test, you will consent to it. This effectively means that refusal to take such a test will automatically get punished in some way or the other.

It is not advisable to decline an OVI tests, but circumstances and your own assessment of the situation may lead you to decline one. When you choose to decline an OVI test, the officer requesting for one should inform you of the consequences of such a refusal and read you your Miranda rights in case when they decide to arrest you.  

However refusal to take such a test has consequence as tabulated below.

1st refusal 1 year license suspension
2nd refusal 2 years license suspension
3rd refusal 3 years license suspension

For any traffic related offense you commit in the state of Ohio, remember the records will always show that you have had a run in with the law. However, the ‘look back period’ for traffic offenses in Ohio is 6 years.

This essentially means that if you do not commit another traffic offense within 6 years of your past offense, then your records have been wiped clean. However, committing a traffic offense within this period will mean that past offense will be factored in deciding your current DUI.

DUIs and you

Driving under the influence of alcohol or any intoxication is never a good idea. However, time and again people have been involved in grisly accidents that leave others and even themselves either permanently maimed or even dead.

It is therefore not surprising that the laws are very strict on DUI offenses. Now let’s delve into the main issues.

DUI for people over 21

If you are over 21 years, you may get a small break as your BAC levels do not have to be very low for you to be considered DUI.

However, it is not advisable to drink then drive as you can never be quite sure you are not over the limit. Unless, you have a breathalyzer with you in your pocket to keep checking if you are ‘high’.

For a 1st offender, you should spend at least 3 days behind bars. This is just a minimum number of days. In reality if you are found guilty, you can be jailed for up to 6 months. That is not all; you could part with $250-$1,000 of your hard earned cash.

As if that is not enough, you face a license suspension of between 6 months to a year. However, you will not be required to install an IID in your vehicle.

2nd time offenders will definitely face steeper penalties. You are looking at a possible 10 days to a year behind bars. Your fines will obviously have been stepped up and you will have to cough up about $350-$1,500. Also in serious jeopardy are your driving privileges.

You will face a suspension of not less than a year but not more than 5 years. This definitely is not a good option. This being your second DUI, you will be a little lucky as you do not require an IID.

For a 3rd time offender, you will be pushing your luck if you expect leniency. You may need to sober up behind bars for a period of not less than a month and depending on the gravity of the circumstances, up to a year.

This time though, your fines will remain similar to those of your 2nd DUI. What should worry you is the suspension of 1 to 10 years.

This time though the court will require you to install an IID in your vehicle.

4th time offenders probably face the worst of the penalties. While jail time of between 2 months to a year may not disturb them much, the fact that they will have to pay a minimum fine of $800 to $10,000 would probably scare them.

If this is not punishment enough, consider a license suspension of between 3 years to a life time. In short, if you are that out of control, you may never be allowed to drive again for as long as you live in Ohio.

Minors and OVI in Ohio

It should be noted that across the nation minor DUIs are take very seriously.

For a 1st time offense, you may spend be jailed for 10 days to a year. You may also have to part with $500-$1000 and a license suspension of between 6 months and 3 years.

For a 2nd offense, get ready to be behind bars for up to a year with fines ranging from $350-$1,000. You are in danger of losing your license for a period of up to 5 years. 

Minors are given special interest because they are the future. Leniency on them automatically means they will go on to become people who really never care about road safety or laws.  This is why, alone with the jail time, suspension and fines, you will find yourself required to attend alcohol education programs and probation.

Each DUI case is as unique as the people involved, it is therefore up to the court to decide what penalties to institute against a minor in each case.

CDL holders and alcohol

Generally a driver who is licensed to drive any of the following vehicles is considered a CDL (commercial driving license) holder.

  • A vehicle that has a combined weight of 26,001 lbs and above
  • A trailer that has a gross weight of 10,000 lbs and above
  • A vehicle that is designated to carry any hazardous material
  • Tanks- vehicles that carry liquids or gaseous materials.
  • Double or triple trailers
  • School buses among others.

In Ohio, little patience is given for CDL holders convicted of OVI. Generally your first DUI is your only opportunity. Your license will be suspended for up to a year.

However, if the vehicle you are operating has the Hazardous material placard, your suspension will be taken up to 3 years.

CDL holders do not have a chance for a second DUI, once you commit your second DUI, your license may be revoked for life.

DUI vehicular manslaughter

Generally vehicular manslaughter occurs when a DUI driver cause the death of another while operating a vehicle. Vehicular manslaughter in Ohio is a felony. What differentiates the gravity of the penalty is the degree you are charged under.

1st degree conviction – you will face up to 11 years in jail. This is usually after an elevation of a 2nd degree felony in which case you would have spent 2-8 years in jail. However, if you have been found guilty of driving without a license, have a prior record of vehicular assault and a prior sentencing of a vehicular homicide, and then it is automatically to first degree.

You will also automatically get a lifelong license suspension. It will be pushed to another limit of 15 years if you have had more than 3 DUI convictions, more than 3 vehicular assault convictions in the past 6 years, 3 or more involuntary manslaughter convictions in the past 6 years among others.

Generally the penalties keep increasing with the seriousness of the incident and the previous driving violations for the past 6 years. What is guaranteed is long sentence and permanent loss of driving privileges.

Driving without a license

If you are DUI and have no license or are driving with a suspended license, the court may suspend your license for up to a year, you may go to jail for up to six months and you will pay up to $1,000 in fines.

This of course is only applicable when no other offense has been involved. If there was an incident, then the charges will drastically change.

Because of the grave nature of OVI offenses, chances of you losing you driving privileges in Ohio are very high.  The period of the suspension is heavily determined by the nature of the offense and your driving records.

How do you reinstate a suspended driving license?

As a general rule in the state of Ohio, as long as you are driving you need to have a minimum insurance cover. This is in order to carter for any incidents or accidents that may happen in the future. These insurance cover requires you to have:

  • $12,500 maximum per person for bodily injuries.
  • $25,000 maximum for total insurance pay outs to people injured in the accident. Generally  victims who file first benefit and the rest can pursue the policy holder personally for compensation
  • $7,500 for property damage.

However, when it comes to DUI convictions, a lot more is required. This is because you are perceived as a danger to road users (pedestrian or drivers). Once you are convicted of a DUI offence the court will order you to acquire a SR22. A SR22 is not an insurance policy.

It is a document drawn up by your insurance provider assuring all and sundry that in case of an accident or an incident that will require financial compensation, you will be in a position to cater for the financial costs that will arise out of the incident.

When the time for your suspension expires, you will be required to pay the court $475 and produce a SR22. This therefore means your insurer must be in a position to offer this to you. However, it is important to note that DUI drivers have the tendency to scare away insurance providers.

The reasons as to why are quite obvious. Dangerous drivers are not attractive people to cover. The cost of insurance is generally determined by a lot of factors, like the make of the car, the cost, the mileage to be covered on a daily basis, where it will be drive and so on.

However, for DUI drivers a special ‘clause’ is added to the many determinants. Namely: The drivers DUI history. This piece of information cause your insurance costs to go up drastically. Therefore, the next time you DUI put these factors into consideration.

Of special attention is the fact that in Ohio, you can plea bargain your conviction to a wet reckless. This generally changes the seriousness of the offense you are accused off. Plea bargains also change the nature of the penalties you will receive.

However, you will most likely be asked to produce a SR22 for this purpose too. Whatever the case, if you wish to lift your suspension, you will have to prove financial responsibility.

This can only be provided by your insurance provider.

At Select Insurance Group no client is too difficult for us.  DUI, driving without insurance, DUI minors among many others are our specialty.

We have the machinery, ability, know-how and willingness to help you. Our job does not entail us crucifying you, rather helping and advising you.

Some of the services we offer you are: SR22, FR44, SR50, and SR22A among others. We fully understand the law and how it works.

We are therefore the ‘go to’ guys when you are faced by an insurance requirement you may be unfamiliar with. However, it begins with you.

By filling our easy to fill forms we will be available to serve you 24/7 from whatever state you wish to be assisted from. All you need to do is talk to us.


There should never be a rush to dying, do not be the person rushing others to their graves. Drink and drive responsibly.

If you have questions, don’t hesitate to call: 855-GET-SELECT (855-438-7353). One of our licensed agents will help you right away.

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