Second Offense DUI/DWI

Understand all the elements when charges with a second DUI/DWI

Understand all the elements when charges with a second DUI/DWI

Contact the knowledgeable attorneys in Leesburg, Va

Charged with a second DUI/DWI offence? Contact our criminal defense lawyers at Koehler & Vernail for advice. We'll review your options and help you understand your rights. Contact The Law Office of Charles F. Koehler, P.C. to discuss your case today at (703) 669-5644.


In most states, acquiring a second DUI/DWI conviction within ten years will result in enhanced criminal and civil consequences. It is important to recognize that these are dealt with separately. A second DUI/DWI offense will usually come with harsher criminal penalties such as jail time and probation, as well as increased fines. It will also make reinstating your ability to drive an even more challenging and protracted process.


For a second DUI/DWI conviction, the government must prove a person drove or operated a motor vehicle, engine, or train and had a previous DUI within the last ten years AND:

  • Had a blood alcohol concentration of 0.08 percent or more by weight or volume, or 0.08 grams or more per 210 liters of breath, or
  • Was under the influence of alcohol, or;
  • Was under the influence of any narcotic drug or intoxicant to the degree they are impaired in their ability to drive, or
  • Was under the combined influence of alcohol and drugs to the extent it impairs their ability to drive, or
  • Had a blood concentration of a certain level for various controlled substances


A second offense within five years of a prior offense:

  • mandatory minimum fine of $500
  • one month to one year in jail
  • a 20-day mandatory minimum jail sentence
  • probation will be imposed

A second offense within more than five but less than ten years of a prior offense:

  • mandatory minimum fine of $500
  • a jail sentence of not less than one month
  • a ten-day mandatory minimum jail sentence
  • probation will be imposed

A second offense within ten years, where the driver's blood alcohol level is between 0.15 and 0.20:

  • mandatory minimum of 10 days in jail
  • Where the blood alcohol level is greater than 0.20, the consequence includes an additional mandatory 20-day s of incarceration


If you're convicted of a second DUI/DWI, the court will typically order that you successfully complete an alcohol safety action program. This program costs between $250 and $300. However, the court can decline to order completion if you receive a qualified assessment indicating that you don't need that level of intervention.

Note: not every alcohol safety action program is the same. Only those programs certified as meeting minimum standards and criteria established by the Commission on the Virginia Alcohol Safety Action Program (VASAP) are qualified to make such assessments.

When someone is arrested for a DUI/DWI, there are civil consequences as well as criminal ones. In Virginia a person must attend an alcohol safety action program. This will be a requirement of any restricted license issued by the court after conviction. Indeed, a person can pre-qualify to get a restricted license by entering an ASAP prior to trial or conviction.


If you have a second conviction for driving under the influence or driving while intoxicated within ten years of a prior driver's license offense, your driver's license will be revoked for a period of three years from the date of conviction. You will also be required to use an ignition interlock system for six months before regaining driving privileges.

Under certain circumstances, a person may apply for a restricted driver's license. A restricted license has certain limitations as to when and what type of driving is allowed. This is not automatic, however, the court, at its discretion, may allow a restricted license to accomplish any of the following purposes under the law:

  • Travel to and from work
  • Travel to and from treatment or an alcohol safety action program
  • Travel during the hours of employment, if one drives for their job
  • Travel to and from school
  • Travel for health care, including medically necessary transport of parents or other household members
  • Travel to transport a child to school, daycare, or medical services
  • Travel for court-ordered visitation of a child
  • Travel for court appearances and appointments with probation, as well as other court-ordered programming
  • Travel to a place of worship
  • Travel to and from appointments regarding child support
  • Travel to and from jail
  • Travel to and from job interviews.