Arizona DUI Laws & Penalties

DUI laws, penalties, fines, license suspension, sr22 filing and more

Arizona DUI Law ARS 28-1381 states that it is unlawful for any person to drive, boat or operate any aircraft while under the influence of alcohol, drugs, inhalants or any combination thereof if the person's blood alcohol concentration is .08% or greater within two hours of driving or operating said vehicle.

Any person stopped while operating a commercial motor vehicle with a blood alcohol concentration of .04% or greater is considered to be under the influence and will be arrested.  The allowable BAC level is much lower while operating a commercial motor vehicle because a CMV is much larger than the average passenger vehicle and causes considerably greater damage to personal property and the possibility of death to another vehicle's occupants is a lot greater.

First time offenders must request a license suspension hearing with the Arizona MVD within 15 days of their arrest.  Failure to request a hearing within this time frame will result in an automatic 90 day suspension.  A license suspension hearing is not something you want to try and navigate on your own, it is very important that you hire an experienced Arizona DUI lawyer and have the lawyer setup the hearing and represent you at the hearing if you value your driving privileges.

Arizona DUI First Offense

A first offense DUI charge in Arizona is considered a misdemeanor charge in most cases and carries the following penalties:

Jail time:  The minimum jail sentence for a first offense is 10 consecutive days in jail.  Nine of the ten days can be suspended by the court if you successfully complete an approved alcohol or drug screening assessment. The first 24 hours of jail time must be consecutive.
Fines:  The minimum fines for a first offense charge are: $250 base fine, plus a $200 80% surcharge, plus a $10 probation surcharge, plus $1,000 in prison and general assessment fines.
DUI Assessment:  The defendant will be required to complete a court ordered and approved DUI assessment and a education class.
Test refusal:  Your license will be suspended for 1 year for a first offense refusal.
Ignition interlock:  An ignition interlock device is required on all vehicles you own before a restricted license is granted or your license is fully reinstated following the suspension period. The interlock is required for 1 year. The interlock time can be reduced to 6 months if certain requirements are met, but this reduction is not likely.
License Suspension:  The minimum license suspension period for a first offense charge is 90 days.  Based on the circumstances surrounding the DUI, the suspension period can be up to 1 year, but a 1 year suspension is rare.

If the Arizona MVD grants you a restricted driving permit you will be required to show proof of future financial responsibility in the form of an SR22 filing made by your Arizona SR22 insurance provider to the Arizona MVD before the permit is issued.The Arizona MVD may also require you to install an ignition interlock device on your vehicle prior to issuing a restricted driving permit or reinstating your license.

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Arizona DUI Second or Subsequent Offense

An Arizona DUI is considered a misdemeanor second offense charge when the second DUI occurs within 84 months of the first offense and your blood alcohol concentration was .15% or less.  A second offense carries the following penalties:

Jail time:  The minimum jail sentence for a second offense is 90 days in jail.  60 of the 90 days can be suspended by the court if you successfully complete an approved alcohol or drug screening assessment.  The first 30 days of jail time must be consecutive days.
Fines:  The minimum fines for a first offense charge are: $500 base fine, plus a $400 80% surcharge, plus a $10 probation surcharge, plus $2,500 in prison and general assessment fines.
Community service:  You will be required to serve 30 hours.
DUI Assessment:  The defendant will be required to complete a court ordered and approved DUI assessment and a education class.
Test refusal:  Your license will be suspended for 2 years for a second offense refusal. Ignition interlock:  An ignition interlock device is required on all vehicles you own before a restricted license is granted or your license is fully reinstated following the suspension period. The interlock is required for a minimum of 1 year.
License Suspension:  The minimum license revocation period for a second offense charge is 1 year.  The Arizona MVD will require the installation of an ignition interlock device on your vehicle by a certified installer prior to reinstating your driver's license.

The Arizona MVD will also require you to provide them with proof of financial responsibility in the form of an SR22 filing made by your Arizona SR22 insurance provider to the Arizona MVD before the Arizona MVD will reinstate your license.

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Arizona Extreme DUI First Offense

A first offense DUI charge is classified as extreme when a person's blood alcohol concentration is .15% or greater.  A first offense extreme charge carries the following penalties:

Jail time:  The minimum jail sentence for a first offense extreme charge is 30 days in jail. Twenty of the 30 days can be suspended by the court if you successfully complete an approved alcohol or drug screening assessment. The first 10 days of jail time must be consecutive days.
Fines:  The minimum fines for a first offense extreme charge are: $250 base fine, plus a $200 80% surcharge, plus a $10 probation surcharge, plus $2,000 in prison and general assessment fines, plus a $250 DUI abatement fee. Total fine amount will exceed $2,700 plus the imprisonment charge.
DUI Assessment:  The defendant will be required to complete a court ordered and approved DUI assessment and a education class.
Ignition interlock:  An ignition interlock device is required on all vehicles you own before a restricted license is granted or your license is fully reinstated following the suspension period. The interlock is required for a minimum of 1 year.License Revocation:  The minimum license revocation period for a first offense extreme charge is 90 days.  The Arizona MVD will require the installation of an ignition interlock device on your vehicle by a certified installer prior to reinstating your driver's license or issuing you a restricted license.  The length of the mandatory ignition interlock period will be set by the court.

The Arizona MVD will also require you to provide them with proof of financial responsibility in the form of an SR22 filing made by your Arizona insurance provider to the Arizona MVD before the Arizona MVD will reinstate your license.

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Arizona Extreme DUI Second or Subsequent Offense

An Arizona DUI is considered an extreme second or subsequent offense charge when the second or subsequent DUI occurs within 84 months of the first offense and your blood alcohol concentration was .15% or greater.  An extreme second or subsequent offense carries the following penalties:

Jail time:  The minimum jail sentence for a second or subsequent extreme offense charge is 120 days in jail.  Sixty of the 120 days can be suspended by the court if you successfully complete an approved alcohol or drug screening assessment.  The first 60 days of jail time must be consecutive days.
Fines:  The minimum fines for a second or subsequent extreme offense charge are: $500 base fine, plus a $435 surcharge, plus a $10 probation surcharge, plus $2,500 in prison and general assessment fines, plus a $250 DUI abatement fee. Total fine amount will exceed $3,700 plus imprisonment charges.
DUI Assessment:  The defendant will be required to complete a court ordered and approved DUI assessment and a education class.
Ignition interlock:  An ignition interlock device is required on all vehicles you own before a restricted license is granted or your license is fully reinstated following the revocation period. The interlock is required for a minimum of 1 year.
License Revocation:  The minimum license revocation period for a second or subsequent extreme offense charge is 1 year.  The Arizona MVD will require the installation of an ignition interlock device on your vehicle by a certified installer prior to reinstating your driver's license. The length of the mandatory ignition interlock period will be set by the court.

The Arizona MVD will also require you to provide them with proof of financial responsibility in the form of an SR22 filing made by your Arizona SR22 insurance provider to the Arizona MVD before the Arizona MVD will reinstate your license.

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Arizona Aggravated DUI

The reasons a person can be charged with an aggravated DUI are: driving on a suspended, revoked or canceled license; being arrested on a third DUI charge within the past 84 months; committing a DUI with a person under the age of 15 in the vehicle; committing a DUI or refusing a blood alcohol test while an ignition interlock device is currently installed on your vehicle.  An aggravated DUI offense carries the following penalties:

Jail time:  The jail sentence for an aggravated DUI charge can range from 10 days up to 120 days in jail.  Depending on the severity of the aggravated charge, some of the minimum jail sentence may be suspended by the court if you successfully complete an approved alcohol or drug screening assessment, but in most aggravated DUI cases you will have to spend the full amount of time in jail and still be required to complete the assigned alcohol or drug screening assessment.
Fines:  The minimum fines for an aggravated DUI charge are: $750 base fine, plus a $600 80% surcharge, plus a $10 probation surcharge, plus $3,000 in prison and general assessment fines, plus a $250 DUI abatement fee.
strong>DUI Assessment:  The defendant will be required to complete a court ordered and approved DUI assessment and a education class.
License Revocation:  The minimum license revocation period for an aggravated DUI offense is 3 years.  The Arizona MVD will require the installation of an ignition interlock device on your vehicle by a certified installer prior to reinstating your driver's license. The length of the mandatory ignition interlock period will be set by the court.

The Arizona MVD will also require you to provide them with proof of financial responsibility in the form of an SR22 filing made by your Arizona SR22 insurance provider to the Arizona MVD before the Arizona MVD will reinstate your license.

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In aggravated DUI cases your vehicle may be forfeited and sold and the proceeds from the sale will be given to the state.

Arizona SR22 Insurance

Before the Arizona MVD will reinstate your driver's license following your suspension period or revocation period you will be required to show proof of financial responsibility to the MVD in the form of an SR22 filing.  An SR22 filing will be provided to the MVD by your SR22 insurance provider.

You will be required to carry your SR22 insurance policy for a period of three years, so you want to make sure that you choose the right insurance provider from the start.  You should also be aware that your insurance provider will immediately inform the Arizona MVD of any lapse in your SR22 coverage, even if it is just one day.

If a lapse occurs, the Arizona MVD will immediately suspend or revoke your driver's license again and you will have to go through the process of having your insurance provider file another SR22 form with the MVD before they will reinstate your license.

The cost of an SR22 policy can vary greatly from one insurance company to the next, that is why it is so important for you to get multiple quotes from different insurance providers so that you obtain the lowest rates possible.

We have partnered with the largest and most trusted SR22 insurance provider in the state of Arizona and have worked out a special discount only available here for our website visitors.

You won't be able to find a cheaper SR22 insurance policy in Arizona for any less.  Type in your zip code below so we can provide you with the cheapest rates in your area.

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Other Arizona DUI Resources

  • Arizona First Offense - First offense information including penalties, fines, potential jail time, license suspension, DUI classes, and more.

  • Arizona Second Offense - Second offense information including penalties, fines, potential jail time, license suspension, DUI classes, and more.

  • Arizona Third Offense - Third offense information including penalties, fines, potential jail time, license suspension, DUI classes, and more.

  • Arizona SR22 Insurance Filing - We have compiled everything you need to know about Arizona's SR22 insurance and filing requirements including important addresses, phone numbers, etc.

  • Arizona Alcohol & Drug Treatment Programs - We offer a complete listing of state approved DUI & alcohol/drug treatment programs.

  • Arizona Bail Bondsmen - Comprehensive list of Arizona bail bond agents including address, phone, website, etc.

  • State Statutes - Complete Arizona DUI statute regarding DUI laws and penalties.

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