Drunk Driving Laws Indiana
According to the drunk driving laws of Indiana, the phrase “operating while intoxicated” or OWI is used in the place of DUI or “driving under the influence.” At the same time, there are some residents who continue to use driving under the influence (DUI) and driving while intoxicated (DWI) for referring to drunk driving in the state.
In Indiana, the OWI laws forbid all motor drivers to operate a motor vehicle:
- When their BAC or blood alcohol concentration is at least .08 percent
- While being intoxicated by alcohol or drugs, or
- With any percentage of controlled substances listed in schedule I or schedule II.
Some of the controlled substances listed under these two schedules include hallucinogenic drugs, opiates, methamphetamine, cocaine, and marijuana.
The state’s DUI laws have also included a “zero tolerance” law, which makes it unlawful tor underage driver to drive a motor vehicle when they have a minimum BAC of .02 percent.
Per Se DUIs and BAC limits in Indiana
According to Indiana drunk driving law, an offense of drunk driving is based on the driver’s BAC rather than the level of impairment of the driver, which is referred to as “per se” Operating while intoxicated. How much alcohol a driver should consume to reach the prescribed legal limit is dependent on several factors such as body size, gender, strengths, and a number of drinks.
Punishment for drunk driving in Indiana
The OWI punishments in the state of Indiana may differ based on the particular circumstances of a case. However, the range of permissible punishments depends to a large extent on the count of the previous convictions of the defendant.
According to the drunk driving law in Indiana, when a person is convicted with an OWI in Indiana, it will remain on the record of the convicted driver and will be counted as a prior offense forever. On the other hand, an OWI is considered as a felony instead of a misdemeanor when the offender has similar past offenses within the last 5 years.
The convicted driver has to serve a maximum prison term of 2 months or up to 12 months when the BAC is at least .15 percent. The fine amount imposed can be a maximum of 500 USD or a maximum of 5,000 USD when the BAC is a minimum of .15 percent. Also, the license of the convicted driver is suspended for 180 days.
The offender has to serve a maximum jail term of 60 days or a maximum of one year when the BAC is a minimum of .15 percent. There is also a maximum fine of 500 USD or up to 5,000 USD when the BAC is a minimum of .15 percent. The licenser of the guilty driver is suspended for a minimum of 12 months.
When the driver commits the same offense of OWI for the third time, he/she has to serve a maximum prison term of 2 months or a maximum period of 12 months when the BAC is a minimum of .15 percent. A maximum fine amount of 500 USD is also imposed against the offender. The fine amount can go up to 5,000 USD when the BAC is a minimum of .15 percent. The offender’s driving license is also suspended at least for 12 months.
Refusing a Breath or Blood Test and implied consent in Indiana
In Indiana, there is an “implied consent” law that requires the drivers to be legally arrested for operating while intoxicated and undergo breath and/or blood tests. Any motor driver who has no previous OQI convictions and refuses such testing will face license suspension for 12 months. The punishment for refusal is increased to 2 years when the driver has a minimum of 1 previous OWI.