If you have been charged with driving under the influence (DUI) before, you probably already know how severe the penalties are for drunk driving in New Hampshire. However, repeat offenses are penalized more severely than a first offense is, and it can be more difficult to get any leniency.
A second DUI conviction is a Class A misdemeanor. If you are convicted of a DUI for the second time, you could be fined at least $750, be forced to undergo a substance use disorder evaluation and have your driver’s license revoked for at least three years.
You could also be sentenced to 60 days in prison if your prior conviction occurred in the past two years. If your prior conviction occurred more than two years ago, you still face 17 days in prison.
If you are convicted of a third DUI, you face the same penalties as you did for your second conviction with a couple exceptions. Following a third offense, you face at least 180 days in jail, and your driver’s license can be revoked indefinitely. However, you may be able to restore your driver’s license after at least five years have passed.
A third DUI is often considered your last chance before a drunk driving conviction becomes a felony. With any DUI offense, it is important to make sure your rights are not violated at any step in the process, but this is especially important if you already have two DUIs on your record.
Fourth or subsequent offense
With three or more convictions on your record, the punishment for another conviction is often especially harsh. A fourth DUI conviction, or any conviction over four, is considered a felony offense. You could receive all the penalties for a second and third offense, but you will not be able to petition to get your driving privileges back until at least seven years have passed.
Some of the penalties for DUI convictions can be life altering, so if you have been arrested for drunk driving, it may be advantageous to exercise your rights to remain silent and to contact legal representation. If you have previously been convicted for drunk driving, it is especially important for you to seek the best possible outcome in court because the penalties you face become more severe with each additional conviction.