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Driving Under The Influence (DUI) Laws

The specifics of DUI laws vary from state to state. However, in most jurisdictions, it is illegal to drive with a BAC of 0.08% or higher, or while under the influence of drugs, including marijuana.


In Washington, D.C. there are two different charges that can be applied to driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

  • 1. Driving Under The Influence:. A DUI, as it is commonly referred to, is legally defined as driving with a blood alcohol content (BAC) of 0.08% or higher. It is outlined in DC Code §50-2206.11.

  • 2. Driving/Operating While Intoxicated: A DWI or an OWI does not require a specific BAC. Rather, only some proof of intoxication is required. It is outlined in DC code §50-2206.14

A DUI//DWI will result in a fine from $300-$1,000 and/or no more then 90 days in jail. A second offense will result in a fine between, $1,000-$5,000 and up to one year in jail. A third offense will result in a fine of $2,000-$3,000 and/or up to one year in jail.

In D.C. "refusal to blow", or refusing to submit to a DUI test will result in the loss of your license for one year. When you receive your license, you give implied consent for intoxication (D.C. Code §50-1905).


In Virginia, the laws are a little different. A DUI is defined the same as in D.C.(see VA code §18.2-266), however Virginia doesn't make a clear distinction between DUI and DWI. In Virginia, VA Code §18.2-269(A)(2)states that a person who has a BAC of less then 0.08% but no more then 0.05% can be considered to be "under the influence" of alcohol.

A first DUI offense will result in a minimum of 5 days in jail, at least $250 fine, and a license suspension for one month. A second offense will result in jail time from 20 days to a year, as well as a minimum $500 fine, and a loss of license for 3 years. A third DUI can result in an indefinite suspension of license, minimum 6 months in jail and a minimum of $1,000 fine.


Driving, or attempting to drive, while under the influence of drugs or alcohol is illegal in Maryland (MD Code §21-902). Driving with a BAC of 0.08% is considered a misdemeanor, and you can be charged with a DWI if you have a BAC of 0.7%.

A DUI in Maryland will earn you a $1,000 fine, while a DWI will result in a $500 fine.
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