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THE TYPES OF MINNESOTA DWI PENALTIES YOU COULD POSSIBLY FACE DEPEND ON THE CIRCUMSTANCES OF EACH INDIVIDUAL DWI CASE.

Minnesota DWI penalties include both criminal penalties and civil penalties.  

Criminal DWI penalties refer to actually serving time in custody, whether it’s in jail, at the workhouse, or an out-of-custody program such as Sentence to Service or electronic home monitoring.

Civil Minnesota DWI penalties include the loss of your driver’s license, license plate impoundment and the forfeiture of your vehicle.  

The length of jail time and driver’s license revocation periods will depend on the type of Minnesota DWI you are facing, the driver’s blood alcohol content in that particular case, as well as any prior DWI convictions.

THERE ARE FIVE DIFFERENT TYPES OF MINNESOTA DWI CHARGES, AND EACH CARRIES THEIR OWN SET OF MINNESOTA DWI PENALTIES.

A person’s first DWI offense with a blood alcohol content below a .16 will typically result in a 4th Degree DWI charge.  This is a Misdemeanor level criminal offense, which is the lowest level criminal offense in Minnesota.  The penalties for a 4th Degree DWI are the least restrictive of any DWI charge.

3rd Degree DWI is a Gross Misdemeanor.  A person will face a 3rd Degree DWI charge if it is their second DWI offense within a 10 year period and their blood alcohol content was below .16 OR it is a first DWI offense but their blood alcohol content was above a .16 or the driver refused to submit to testing or there was a child in the vehicle at the the time of arrest.  The Minnesota DWI penalties for a 3rd Degree DWI begin to include jail time and lengthy driver’s license revocation periods.

2nd Degree DWI is also a Gross Misdemeanor.  A person will face a 2nd Degree DWI charge if it is their third DWI offense within a 10 year period and their blood alcohol content was below .16 OR it is their second DWI offense and an aggravating factor exists, such as a blood alcohol content above .16, a refusal to submit to testing, or the presence of a child.  

Mandatory Minnesota DWI penalties begin to kick in on a second DWI offense within a ten year period of the first. These mandatory penalties include lengthy jail time, lengthy driver’s license revocation periods, and the possible forfeiture of your vehicle.

1st Degree DWI is a Felony.  A person will face a 1st Degree Felony DWI if it is their fourth DWI offense within a 10 year period.  A conviction of 1st Degree DWI carries significant penalties, including possibly serving time in prison.

This post is only an introduction into Minnesota DWI penalties.  Check back for future posts with a more in-depth explanation of the Minnesota DWI penalties associated with each type of Minnesota DWI charge.

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John T. Arechigo, Esq.

Attorney John Arechigo has a passion for criminal defense.  He devotes nearly 100% of his practice to defending individuals charged with a crime. John offers what very few other Twin Cities criminal defense lawyers can offer. His combination of experience, success, connections, resources, accessibility, and complete handling of a client’s file sets him apart from his colleagues.

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