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First Offense DUI Charges in Connecticut

Connecticut prosecutes drunk driving very seriously by imposing severe penalties for even first offense violations.  The penalties for a first offense DUI in Connecticut include jail time, steep fines, and mandatory loss of license.  The penalties, as you will see below, are given in the form of ranges.  Discretion is given to the judge, in sentencing, to determine what the exact sentence will be.  The judge will evaluate the case based on a number of factors including: the facts of your case, your driving history, your history of alcohol or substance abuse problems, any victim and their input, as well as numerous other factors.

Given the discretion given to the prosecutors and judges, it is important to contact a skilled Connecticut Drunk Driving Lawyer who will be able to evaluate the facts of your case, explain to you how the case will proceed through the court system, and describe for you the penalties you will likely face if found guilty of a first offense DUI in CT.

CT DUI Lawyer Matthew T. Marin 860-294-4384 Contact Me 24 Hours a Day - 7 Days a Week

Under Connecticut's Criminal Law, if a driver is convicted of First Offense DUI then the following penalties must be imposed:

First Offense DUI CT Penalties

  • Fine of Five Hundred ($500) to One Thousand ($1,000) Dollars
  • Jail:
    • Up to 6 Months Jail with 48 Hours Mandatory Minimum
    • 6 Months Jail Suspended with 100 Hours Community Service
  • License Suspension for One (1) Year

Restoration Requirements - 1st Offense DUI CT

  • Duration of Suspension is One Year from Effective Date of Suspension
    • If the operator was under 18 years of age on the date of the arrest, the duration of suspension is one year from the effective date of the suspension or until the date of the operator's 18th birthday, whichever is  longer
  • Submit a check or money order in the amount of $125 payable to "DMV"
  • If the suspension is a result of an arrest for DUI in Connecticut, the Substance Abuse Treatment Program, approved by the Commissioner of Motor Vehicles, must be completed before the license can be restored

Full Text of Connecticut DUI Laws

Sec. 14-227a. Operation while under the influence of liquor or drug or while having an elevated blood alcohol content.

(a) Operation while under the influence or while having an elevated blood alcohol content. No person shall operate a motor vehicle while under the influence of intoxicating liquor or any drug or both. A person commits the offense of operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of intoxicating liquor or any drug or both if such person operates a motor vehicle (1) while under the influence of intoxicating liquor or any drug or both, or (2) while such person has an elevated blood alcohol content. For the purposes of this section, "elevated blood alcohol content" means a ratio of alcohol in the blood of such person that is eight-hundredths of one per cent or more of alcohol, by weight, except that if such person is operating a commercial motor vehicle, "elevated blood alcohol content" means a ratio of alcohol in the blood of such person that is four-hundredths of one per cent or more of alcohol, by weight, and "motor vehicle" includes a snowmobile and all-terrain vehicle, as those terms are defined in section 14-379.

(b) Admissibility of chemical analysis. Except as provided in subsection (c) of this section, in any criminal prosecution for violation of subsection (a) of this section, evidence respecting the amount of alcohol or drug in the defendant's blood or urine at the time of the alleged offense, as shown by a chemical analysis of the defendant's breath, blood or urine shall be admissible and competent provided: (1) The defendant was afforded a reasonable opportunity to telephone an attorney prior to the performance of the test and consented to the taking of the test upon which such analysis is made; (2) a true copy of the report of the test result was mailed to or personally delivered to the defendant within twenty-four hours or by the end of the next regular business day, after such result was known, whichever is later; (3) the test was performed by or at the direction of a police officer according to methods and with equipment approved by the Department of Public Safety and was performed in accordance with the regulations adopted under subsection (d) of this section; (4) the device used for such test was checked for accuracy in accordance with the regulations adopted under subsection (d) of this section; (5) an additional chemical test of the same type was performed at least ten minutes after the initial test was performed or, if requested by the police officer for reasonable cause, an additional chemical test of a different type was performed to detect the presence of a drug or drugs other than or in addition to alcohol, provided the results of the initial test shall not be inadmissible under this subsection if reasonable efforts were made to have such additional test performed in accordance with the conditions set forth in this subsection and such additional test was not performed or was not performed within a reasonable time, or the results of such additional test are not admissible for failure to meet a condition set forth in this subsection; and (6) evidence is presented that the test was commenced within two hours of operation. In any prosecution under this section it shall be a rebuttable presumption that the results of such chemical analysis establish the ratio of alcohol in the blood of the defendant at the time of the alleged offense, except that if the results of the additional test indicate that the ratio of alcohol in the blood of such defendant is ten-hundredths of one per cent or less of alcohol, by weight, and is higher than the results of the first test, evidence shall be presented that demonstrates that the test results and the analysis thereof accurately indicate the blood alcohol content at the time of the alleged offense.

(c) Evidence of blood alcohol content. In any prosecution for a violation of subdivision (1) of subsection (a) of this section, reliable evidence respecting the amount of alcohol in the defendant's blood or urine at the time of the alleged offense, as shown by a chemical analysis of the defendant's blood, breath or urine, otherwise admissible under subsection (b) of this section, shall be admissible only at the request of the defendant.

(d) Testing and analysis of blood, breath and urine. The Commissioner of Public Safety shall ascertain the reliability of each method and type of device offered for chemical testing and analysis purposes of blood, of breath and of urine and certify those methods and types which said commissioner finds suitable for use in testing and analysis of blood, breath and urine, respectively, in this state. The Commissioner of Public Safety shall adopt regulations, in accordance with chapter 54, governing the conduct of chemical tests, the operation and use of chemical test devices, the training and certification of operators of such devices and the drawing or obtaining of blood, breath or urine samples as said commissioner finds necessary to protect the health and safety of persons who submit to chemical tests and to insure reasonable accuracy in testing results. Such regulations shall not require recertification of a police officer solely because such officer terminates such officer's employment with the law enforcement agency for which certification was originally issued and commences employment with another such agency.

(e) Evidence of refusal to submit to test. In any criminal prosecution for a violation of subsection (a) of this section, evidence that the defendant refused to submit to a blood, breath or urine test requested in accordance with section 14-227b shall be admissible provided the requirements of subsection (b) of said section have been satisfied. If a case involving a violation of subsection (a) of this section is tried to a jury, the court shall instruct the jury as to any inference that may or may not be drawn from the defendant's refusal to submit to a blood, breath or urine test.

(f) Reduction, nolle or dismissal prohibited. If a person is charged with a violation of the provisions of subsection (a) of this section, the charge may not be reduced, nolled or dismissed unless the prosecuting authority states in open court such prosecutor's reasons for the reduction, nolle or dismissal.

(g) Penalties for operation while under the influence. Any person who violates any provision of subsection (a) of this section shall: (1) For conviction of a first violation, (A) be fined not less than five hundred dollars or more than one thousand dollars, and (B) be (i) imprisoned not more than six months, forty-eight consecutive hours of which may not be suspended or reduced in any manner, or (ii) imprisoned not more than six months, with the execution of such sentence of imprisonment suspended entirely and a period of probation imposed requiring as a condition of such probation that such person perform one hundred hours of community service, as defined in section 14-227e, and (C) have such person's motor vehicle operator's license or nonresident operating privilege suspended for one year; (2) for conviction of a second violation within ten years after a prior conviction for the same offense, (A) be fined not less than one thousand dollars or more than four thousand dollars, (B) be imprisoned not more than two years, one hundred twenty consecutive days of which may not be suspended or reduced in any manner, and sentenced to a period of probation requiring as a condition of such probation that such person perform one hundred hours of community service, as defined in section 14-227e, and (C) (i) if such person is under twenty-one years of age at the time of the offense, have such person's motor vehicle operator's license or nonresident operating privilege suspended for three years or until the date of such person's twenty-first birthday, whichever is longer, and be prohibited for the two-year period following completion of such period of suspension from operating a motor vehicle unless such motor vehicle is equipped with a functioning, approved ignition interlock device, as defined in section 14-227j, or (ii) if such person is twenty-one years of age or older at the time of the offense, have such person's motor vehicle operator's license or nonresident operating privilege suspended for one year and be prohibited for the two-year period following completion of such period of suspension from operating a motor vehicle unless such motor vehicle is equipped with a functioning, approved ignition interlock device, as defined in section 14-227j; and (3) for conviction of a third and subsequent violation within ten years after a prior conviction for the same offense, (A) be fined not less than two thousand dollars or more than eight thousand dollars, (B) be imprisoned not more than three years, one year of which may not be suspended or reduced in any manner, and sentenced to a period of probation requiring as a condition of such probation that such person perform one hundred hours of community service, as defined in section 14-227e, and (C) have such person's motor vehicle operator's license or nonresident operating privilege permanently revoked upon such third offense. For purposes of the imposition of penalties for a second or third and subsequent offense pursuant to this subsection, a conviction under the provisions of subsection (a) of this section in effect on October 1, 1981, or as amended thereafter, a conviction under the provisions of either subdivision (1) or (2) of subsection (a) of this section, a conviction under the provisions of section 53a-56b or 53a-60d or a conviction in any other state of any offense the essential elements of which are determined by the court to be substantially the same as subdivision (1) or (2) of subsection (a) of this section or section 53a-56b or 53a-60d, shall constitute a prior conviction for the same offense.

(h) Suspension of operator's license or nonresident operating privilege. (1) Each court shall report each conviction under subsection (a) of this section to the Commissioner of Motor Vehicles, in accordance with the provisions of section 14-141. The commissioner shall suspend the motor vehicle operator's license or nonresident operating privilege of the person reported as convicted for the period of time required by subsection (g) of this section. The commissioner shall determine the period of time required by said subsection (g) based on the number of convictions such person has had within the specified time period according to such person's driving history record, notwithstanding the sentence imposed by the court for such conviction. (2) The motor vehicle operator's license or nonresident operating privilege of a person found guilty under subsection (a) of this section who is under eighteen years of age shall be suspended by the commissioner for the period of time set forth in subsection (g) of this section, or until such person attains the age of eighteen years, whichever period is longer. (3) The motor vehicle operator's license or nonresident operating privilege of a person found guilty under subsection (a) of this section who, at the time of the offense, was operating a motor vehicle in accordance with a special operator's permit issued pursuant to section 14-37a shall be suspended by the commissioner for twice the period of time set forth in subsection (g) of this section. (4) If an appeal of any conviction under subsection (a) of this section is taken, the suspension of the motor vehicle operator's license or nonresident operating privilege by the commissioner, in accordance with this subsection, shall be stayed during the pendency of such appeal.


Our Connecticut DUI Lawyers represent those charged with First Offense DUI CT / DWI / Drunk Driving in the following cities and towns:

General Member of the National College for DUI Defense

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Attorney Matthew Marin is a General Member of the National College for DUI Defense. College members represent the most experienced DUI defense attorneys in the country. For more information on the National College for DUI Defense, follow the link below.

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Attorney Marin received more than 24 reviews of 4 stars or more and was awarded the Client's Choice Award for 2014 by Avvo.com.

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Hamden, CT 06518
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