First DUI

Most people arrested for DUI are arrested for a first offense. In fact, the Utah Commission on Criminal and Juvenile Justice (CCJJ) recently estimated that seventy percent (70%) of arrests were for a first DUI offense. Only nineteen percent (19%) were for a second offense, seven percent (7%) were for a third offense, and about four percent (4%) were for a fourth or subsequent offense.

Utah law provides for harsh penalties, even for a first DUI. Immediately after the arrest, you face an administrative suspension. You only have ten (10) days after the arrest to demand a hearing to contest the administrative suspension to show that it should be removed from your driving record. Also, you can face additional court-ordered penalties if you are convicted of DUI in court.

Although the penalties are harsh, the law in Utah provides many defenses to a DUI charge. Don't just assume you will be convicted. Instead, seek out the services of an experienced attorney who can help you fight for the best possible result in your case. 

*Update: Utah Governor Gary Herbert signed HB 155 into law changing the legal blood alcohol level from 0.08 to 0.05. The Bill will take effect December 30, 2018.

Attorneys for a First DUI in Salt Lake City

The attorneys at Brown, Bradshaw & Moffat, LLP in Salt Lake City, Utah, can help you protect your driver’s license while we fight the criminal charges. We understand the special issues that occur after a DUI arrest for a person with no prior arrest record. 

Just the allegation of drunk driving can impact a person’s family and career in many unexpected ways immediately after the arrest and for years to come. Call today to discuss your case with our attorneys and find out what you need to do immediately to protect your rights.

We represent clients throughout Salt Lake County and the surrounding areas in Utah. Call (801) 532-5297 today.


Penalties for a First DUI in Utah

For a first DUI offenses classified under Section 41-6A-503., the offense is normally charged as a class B misdemeanor. The offense is a class A misdemeanor:

a. if bodily injury occurred;

b. if the passenger is under 16; or

c. if a passenger is under 18 and the driver is 21 or older.

Under § 41-6-44 of Utah Code Ann., the law provides that for a first misdemeanor conviction, the court SHALL do one of the following:

a. impose a jail sentence of not less than 48 consecutive hours; or

b. require the person to work in a compensatory work service program for not less than 48 hours; or

c. require the offender to participate in home confinement through the use of electronic monitoring.

Additionally, if convicted of a first DUI, the court will impose the following punishments under Section 41-6A-505 including;

a. screening and assessment (if found appropriate by screening);

b. education series (unless treatment is ordered) or treatment; and

c. supervised probation.

The Court may order the ignition interlock device (IID) and shall order IID if the driver is under 21 or for ARD violations, or the court may describe on record why requiring the IID is not appropriate. See Section 41-6A-518 and 41-6A-530.


Penalties for a First DUI with a High BAC of .16:

If you submitted to a breath test or blood test, and the results showed a BAC of .16 or higher, then if you are convicted of the offense the Court is required to order supervised probation and treatment, and the ignition interlock device, and/or home confinement, or describe on the record why such an order is not appropriate. See Section 41-6A-505.

The Court may order an additional 90 days, 180 days, one (1) year or two (2) year license suspension.


Additional Resources

Penalties for driving under the influence violations - Visit the website fo the Utah State Legislature for more information on the penalties that come with a first offense DUI/ DWIs.

Utah Sentencing Matrix 2015 for a First DUI Offense - This Utah DUI sentencing matrix is current as of May 12, 2015. It shows the court-ordered sentencing classification for a first offense of misdemeanor DUI and for a second offense within ten (10) years. Also, find information on penalties for a felony DUI. Find minimum mandatory punishments for jail, fines, screening and assessment requirements, probation, and the requirement to install an ignition interlock.  


Finding a First DUI Attorney in Salt Lake City

The DUI lawyers in Salt Lake City at Brown, Bradshaw & Moffat, LLP are experienced in fighting DUI cases. Call us to find out more about defenses that might be available in your drunk driving case. 

We understand the special issues for a person with no prior arrest record facing a prosecution for a first DUI. With offices conveniently located in Salt Lake City, we are ready to meet with you to discuss your case. Find out what you need to do right now to protect your rights.

The attorneys at Brown, Bradshaw & Moffat, LLP represent men and women charged with drunk and drugged driving crimes throughout Greater Salt Lake including the communities of Riverton, Holladay, Taylorsville, Magna, Kearns, Midvale, Herriman, Copperton Township and Millcreek. Our lawyers represent clients in Salt Lake County and the surrounding areas including Davis County, Utah County, Morgan County, Tooele County, Summit County and Wasatch County.

Our criminal defense attorneys fight DUI cases throughout Salt Lake County and the surrounding areas. Whether this is your first DUI case or the second charge for DUI, let us help you fight the case. We represent clients who took a breath test or a blood test with an alcohol concentration over the legal limit.

Our Salt Lake City DUI Attorneys also represent clients charged with refusing to take the breath or blood test.

Call (801) 532-5297 today.


This article was last updated on Monday, June 19, 2017.