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What Happens after a first DWI? DUI, DWI

What Happens after a first DWI?

2 years ago by Brian
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What Happens if You Get More than One DWI in Minnesota?

A first-time conviction of driving while intoxicated (DWI/DUI) in Minnesota can have serious consequences – more serious than many people might think. The situation gets significantly more concerning if you face DWI charges and already have one or more DWI convictions on your record. If this happens, you should immediately contact a Woodbury DWI Lawyer who can begin working on your case. 

2nd DWI Charge

When you have a prior DWI conviction within the past ten years, your charges escalate from a fourth-degree DWI to a third-degree DWI. This is a gross misdemeanor, and the possible penalties include:


  1. Up to one year in jail with a minimum 30-day sentence
  2. Fines up to $3,000
  3. Loss of your license for one year


If there are other aggravating factors in your case, the charges and penalties can be even more severe. 

3rd DWI Charge

A third DWI charge within ten years is also a gross misdemeanor with the same criminal penalties as a second offense, though the minimum jail sentence increases to 90 days. You will also lose your license for three years, and law enforcement officers can seize your vehicle at the time of your arrest, and you might forfeit your vehicle permanently if you do not seek legal help right away. 

4th DWI Charge

If you get charged with DWI for the fourth time in ten years, the charge becomes a felony. The possible penalties for a fourth offense include:


  1. Up to seven years in state prison with a minimum sentence of 180 days
  2. Five years of conditional release following a prison sentence
  3. Fines up to $14,000
  4. Loss of your license for at least four years, and you cannot get it back until you complete rehabilitation requirements


A fifth DWI charge is also a felony, but the mandatory minimum incarceration increases to one year. As you can see, the stakes get much higher when you have prior convictions on your record. 

Other Aggravating DWI Factors

Having prior convictions is not the only factor that increases the charges and penalties for a DWI in Minnesota. Some additional aggravating factors that can lead to more serious consequences include:


  1. Breath test refusal (implied consent law)
  2. Prior license revocation for breath test refusal (implied consent law)
  3. Blood alcohol content (BAC) of 0.16 or higher
  4. Having a child younger than 16 in the vehicle during the DWI
  5. Causing bodily injury or death to others


In many cases, aggravating factors can result in felony DWI charges or even manslaughter charges if a DWI led to a fatal accident. 

Speak with a Woodbury Multiple DWI/DUI Lawyer

At JS Defense, PA., we represent clients facing serious DWI allegations. Never think that a DWI is not a serious matter, as it can have harsh and lasting consequences and effects on your life. You might lose your job, your license, your vehicle, or even worse – your freedom. You want to avoid a conviction whenever possible, so please contact us right away whether this is your first DWI or you have past convictions. Call now: 651-362-9426

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This page has been written, edited, and reviewed by a team of legal writers following our comprehensive editorial guidelines. This page was approved by attorney Justin M. Schiks who has more than 20 years of legal experience as a personal injury attorney.

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