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What are the penalties of operating under the influence?

Operating a motor vehicle under the influence of alcohol or drugs is a serious offense in Connecticut, and the possible penalties depend on whether anyone was killed or injured in the accident and whether it is a first, second or subsequent offense. If you have been accused of driving under the influence, understanding the possible outcomes is an important step in the process of making decisions about how to proceed with your defense strategy.

If this is your first operating under the influence offense, you can face suspension of your driver's license for 45 days and you will have to have an interlock ignition device on your car for one year after you are given back your license.

For a second offense, the license is suspended for 45 days or until your 21st birthday if that is farther than 45 days away. You may also have to have an interlock ignition device installed for three years after the license is restored and may have your driving privileges restricted. Upon a third operating under the influence conviction, your license is permanently revoked, but a hearing requesting that the license be reinstated can be held after two years have passed.

If someone was killed or hurt in an accident where you were driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, you can face charges of vehicular manslaughter or vehicular assault. A conviction for either charge can result in a one-year driver's license suspension and two years of having an interlock ignition device.

OUI defendants in Connecticut do have options, but it is important to remember that what happens before, during and after an arrest can have an impact on how the case plays out.

Source: Department of Motor Vehicles, "Operating Under the Influence of Alcohol or Drugs, C.G.S §14-227a, §14-227g or §14-111n conviction" Nov. 02, 2014

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