Whether you plead guilty or go to court and get convicted, driving while intoxicated (DWI) in Missouri means big penalties. You could go to jail or wind up on probation. You will probably have to pay a fine and deal with higher insurance costs.
You will also very likely lose your license at least temporarily after you plead guilty or the courts convict you. Not having a license can mean hardship for you and even for your dependent family members.
How long will a DWI offense impact your driving privileges in Missouri?
Your driving record determines the length of the suspension
A first DWI conviction will mean the loss of your license for 90 days, although some drivers can qualify for a restricted license. You have to have avoided alcohol driving offenses in the past and must also agree to install an ignition interlock device in your vehicle to qualify for a restricted license.
A second DWI will usually mean the loss of your license for a full year. However, if you get convicted of a second DWI within five years of the first, the state could suspend your license for five years. Third or subsequent offenses will usually mean the loss of your license for ten years.
When facing a drunk driving charge, its’ wise to get help
While the consequences for later offenses can motivate you to defend against a second or third charge, they could also motivate you to defend against the first DWI. When you don’t have a record, you won’t face those longer suspension periods. Educating yourself about DWI consequences can help you make the best decision possible in your situation.