By: DUI Attorneys Near Me at a Law Firm in Greenville SC, James Hardy Price IV and E. Powers Price, DUI Attorney in Greenville, SC
Unlike some states, South Carolina uses a graduated penalty range for drunk driving (DUI) charges. Thanks to federal mandates to all states for tougher DUI laws, DUI jail time is just one of several DUI penalties in South Carolina. Repeat DUI offenders will face more punishments and fines for DUI.
Cost of a DUI in South Carolina. Because every person convicted of DUI in SC must complete the ADSAP program to have driving privileges reinstated, expect to spend thousands of dollars on DUI punishment, if the accused drunk driver doesn’t successfully fight the DUI case. DUI fines will be just a small fraction of that cost.
The complexity of these many variations and factors requires the able assistance of skilled and experienced lawyers near me for DUI in SC. A DUI first offense is no exception to this maxim since the crime cannot be expunged from your criminal history — ever.
If you are charged with a new DUI in SC and your driver’s license is taken and administratively suspended as a result, you have the right (within 30 days of the arrest) to request a Preliminary Hearing. This is available for a DUI alcohol or DUI drugs arrest.
South Carolina DUI penalties are controlled by the “number” of the offense (whether it is a first DUI offence, DUI second offense, or third DUI offense) within the prior ten years. Next, on subsequent offenses, the accused, repeat offender, impaired driver’s blood alcohol concentration can drastically alter potential DUI punishments that your DUI lawyer will not be able to negotiate away.
Thanks to the 6th Amendment of the United States Constitution, every person has the right to a DUI defense attorney. For accused DUI arrestees in SC who are indigent or cannot afford DUI fees for private legal counsel, the SC DUI court in which your case is pending will be obligated to appoint a DUI defense lawyer to represent you.
DUI Levels in SC: Penalties for DUI Alcohol or Drugs in the Palmetto State
One of our other DUI information pages discusses a DUI first offense SC, and the likely DUI penalties and DUI consequences of a first offense DUI.
2nd DUI in SC. The jail time on a 2nd offense DUI in SC goes up to five (5) days, to as much as three (3) years in jail. Additionally, your BAC “number can cost you more penalties. Drivers who gave a post-arrest test and yielded 0.10 grams % and up to 0.16 grams percent Datamaster number will face thirty (30) days to two (2) years of jail time.
Finally, that same driver whose breath alcohol content revealed a 0.16 (or higher) gr. percent reading faces ninety (90) days to three years in custody, if convicted.
If that driver is also dealing with a second offense for DUS (Driving Under Suspension) for a prior DUI, the jail penalty will be sixty (60) days to six (6) months or $600 fine plus court costs (on that DUS conviction) that more than doubles that base fine amount.
3rd DUI in SC. For a felony DUI in SC, which would be a third DUI conviction within 10 years, prison time and financial penalties climb higher. The base fine amounts can range from Three Thousand Eight Hundred Dollars to $10,000, before surcharges are added. Minimum jail time is sixty (60) days and can go up to 5 years behind bars.
For a third or subsequent criminal offense for Driving Under Suspension for DUI within 10 years, the penalty on the DUS can be six (6) months to three (3) years in state prison and a $1,000 fine plus court costs that push the total north of $2500.
All these convictions carry lengthy additional driver’s license suspensions that will have to “waited out” with no driving privileges permitted at all, until certain conditions and time periods have passed. On top of that, license reinstatement fees will need to be paid to the SC DMV before your license can be reinstated.
DUI BAC Level: Your BAC Level’s Impact if Over the Legal Limit
Driving under the influence definition. Driving Under the Influence in South Carolina is defined as driving a motor vehicle under the influence of alcohol or drugs to the extent that the driver’s faculties are materially and appreciably impaired. In all instances set forth below, completion of the Palmetto State’s DUI school (ADSAP) and payment of reinstatement fees is required, plus proof of having auto insurance, to get a restricted, interlock-restricted driving permit.
As stated above, the penalties for Driving Under the Influence vary depending on the offense number (whether it is a first, second, or third offense within ten years), as well as the driver’s blood alcohol concentration. When a high BAC is involved, South Carolina’s high and aggravated” additional jail time and penalties are tacked on.
The various and increasing penalties for Driving Under the Influence in South Carolina are as follows:
For a first offense where the driver refuses to give a breath, blood, or urine sample or has a BAC of up to 0.10, the penalty is 48 hours to 30 days in jail or a $400 fine (plus court costs).
For a first offense where the driver’s BAC is 0.10 to 0.16, the penalty is 72 hours to 30 days in jail or $500 fine (plus court costs). The driver will also be required to install an ignition interlock device in their vehicle.
For a first offense where the driver’s BAC is 0.16 or above, the penalty is 30 days to 90 days in jail or $1,000 fine (plus court costs) and the driver will be required to install an ignition interlock device in their vehicle.
For a second offense where the driver refuses to give a breath, blood, or urine sample or has a BAC of up to 0.10, the penalty is 5 days to a year in jail and a fine of $2,100 to $5,100 (plus court costs) and the driver will be required to install an ignition interlock device in their vehicle.
For a second offense where the driver’s BAC is 0.10 to 0.16, the penalty is 30 days to 2 years in jail and a fine of $2,500 to $5,500 (plus court costs). The driver will also have to install an ignition interlock device in their vehicle.
For a second offense where the driver’s BAC is 0.16 or above, the penalty is 90 days to 3 years in jail and a fine of $3,500 to $6,500 (plus court costs). The driver will also need to install an ignition interlock device in their vehicle.
For a third offense where the driver refuses to give a breath, blood, or urine sample or has a BAC of up to .10, the penalty is 60 days to 3 years in jail and a fine of $3,800 to $6,300 (plus court costs) and the driver will be required to install an ignition interlock device in their vehicle.
For a third offense where the driver’s BAC is .10 to .16, the penalty is 90 days to 4 years in jail and a fine of $5,000 to $7,500 (plus court costs). The driver will also have to install an ignition interlock device in their vehicle.
For a third offense where the driver’s BAC is .16 or above, the penalty is 6 months to 5 years in jail and a fine of $7,500 to $10,000 (plus court costs). The driver will also need to install an ignition interlock device in their vehicle.
For a fourth or subsequent offense where the driver refuses to give a breath, blood, or urine sample or has a BAC of up to .10, the penalty is 1 year to 5 years in jail and the installation of an ignition interlock device.
For a fourth or subsequent offense where the driver’s BAC is 0.10 to 0.16, the penalty is 2 years to 6 years in jail. The driver will also have to install an ignition interlock device in his or her vehicle to regain restricted driving privileges.
For a fourth or subsequent offense where the driver’s BAC is 0.16 or above, the penalty is 3 years to 7 years in jail. The driver will also need to install an ignition interlock device in her or his vehicle.
All convictions will require the driver to enroll and complete an Alcohol and Drug Safety Action Program (ADSAP) as well as obtain SR 21 Insurance. Regardless of your prior history of DUI convictions, our legal team aggressively represents clients with any misdemeanor or felony DUI accusations pending.
Felony DUI SC Charges in Accident Cases: DUI Jail Penalties Up to 25 Years in Prison
South Carolina’s felony DUI law states that “‘great bodily injury’ means bodily injury which creates a substantial risk of death, or which causes serious, permanent disfigurement, or protracted loss or impairment of the function of any bodily member or organ.”
What would be my sentence for DUI on a repeat offense? The penalties for this type of felony Driving Under the Influence (DUI) can be severe. For Felony DUI resulting in Great Bodily, the penalty ranges from a mandatory fine of not less than 30 days in jail and a $5,100 fine up to serving as much as 15 years imprisonment and a $10,100 fine.
The penalty for Felony DUI resulting in Death ranges from a mandatory fine of $10,100 to $25,100 and mandatory imprisonment of one (1) year to 25 years. In recent years, the Greenville SC area has been reported to have one of the highest DUI death rates in the Palmetto State.
How much does a DUI cost over ten years? This number for some repeat offenders in high-income jobs can run in the millions of dollars when they are fired. Court costs can vary from court to court but can often come out being as much as twice the fine amount assessed by the Court.
FREE Lawyer Consultation: Call Today and Obtain FREE Legal Advice About Avoiding a DUI Conviction
Even if you had a public defender or no attorney at all on your 1st DUI in SC, don’t risk your freedom and ability to drive on a repeat DUI ticket in South Carolina. For a FREE consultation, call today to speak with E. Powers Price or James H. Price IV at their law office in Greenville, South Carolina. The South Carolina criminal defense team is fully equipped to fight your case all the way to the South Carolina Supreme Court.
Being SC natives and the 4th generation of criminal defense lawyers near me in upstate SC (going back to 1906) helps our lawyers know the various “ins and outs” about upstate criminal law courts. Our training came from our later father, Chip Price, who passed away in 2020. In upstate SC, he was widely known to be the best DUI lawyer in Greenville SC.
In the last 20 years of his law practice, Chip was widely regarded as the South Carolina upstate’s best criminal defense attorney in Greenville SC. Our partners are proud to have learned his DUI secrets from him prior to his passing.
Once you hire a legal services professional from Price & Price Attorneys, you establish an attorney client relationship which protects all confidential conversations between you and your criminal attorneys near me in upstate SC. Speak to your legal advocate with openness and confidence that what you tell us will not be repeated. You want to be consulting with two of SC’s best DUI attorneys about these complex criminal matters.
FREE Consultation: How to Avoid a DUI Conviction
The secret to great outcomes in SC DUI arrests is to seek the help of skilled, experienced local DUI attorneys in upstate SC. To start the process of shifting this legal burden OFF your shoulders and onto ours, call today for a FREE lawyer consultation.
Dial our main number, 864-271-3535, and speak with a Price attorney about keeping a DUI off your criminal record and driving record. Our DUI defenders will share our ideas on winning your DUI case, Then, once we get a chance to review all traffic tickets and license suspension information, we can plot the path of your DUI defense.
Tap into the local court familiarity and connections of our criminal lawyers in Greenville, SC. By being part of the Chip price family and both partners being lifetime SC natives, Greenville is a special place for our criminal defense lawyers Greenville, SC. By initially working as State-paid attorneys in our early years, the high volume of cases handled taught both of us about the “ins and outs” of the upstate law courts.
Once you hire one of our legal service professionals, the attorney-client relationship protects all conversations between you and your criminal lawyers near me in upstate SC. Receive our FREE legal advice, and speak with openness and confidence to our attorneys for DUI that it will not be repeated by our DUI lawyers in SC.
Call now to speak with our lawyers near me in Upstate SC, and receive your free consultation lawyer phone call, virtual meeting or in person consult with our South Carolina lawyers. Contact us at 864-271-3535.