DUI F.A.Q.

Driving Under the Influence Frequently Asked Questions

What are the penalties for a DUI in North Carolina?

Penalties for DUI in North Carolina are set forth by statute in NCGS § 20-179. A summary of the penalties* for a DUI in Asheville, NC are as follows:
  • Immediate license suspension for 30 days, with the possibility of limited driving privileges after 10 days.
  • Up to a $200 fine.
  • Between 24 hours and 60 days in jail. (Your judge might suspend your sentence to 24 hours of imprisonment or 24 hours of community service as part of probation.)
  • Substance abuse assessment, if you’re placed on probation.
  • Immediate license suspension for 30 days, with the possibility of limited driving privileges after 10 days.
  • Up to a $500 fine.
  • Between 48 hours and 120 days in jail. (Your judge might suspend your sentence to 48 hours of imprisonment or 48 hours of community service as part of probation.)
  • Substance abuse assessment, if you’re placed on probation.
  • Immediate license suspension for 30 days, with the possibility of limited driving privileges after 10 days.
  • Up to a $1,000 fine.
  • Between 72 hours and 6 months in jail. (Your judge might suspend your sentence to 72 hours of imprisonment or 72 hours of community service as part of probation.)
  • Substance abuse assessment, if you’re placed on probation.
  • Immediate license suspension for 30 days, with the possibility of limited driving privileges after 10 days.
  • Up to a $2,000 fine.
  • Between 7 days and 12 months in jail. (Your judge might suspend your sentence to 90 days of abstaining from alcohol, which the court will monitor.)
  • Substance abuse assessment, if you’re placed on probation.
  • Immediate license suspension for 30 days, with the possibility of limited driving privileges after 10 days.
  • Up to a $4,000 fine.
  • Between 30 days and 24 months in jail. (Your judge might give you 10 days under probation cases involving alcohol monitoring for 120 days.)
  • Substance abuse assessment, if you’re placed on probation.
  • Immediate license suspension for 30 days, with the possibility of limited driving privileges after 10 days.
  • Up to a $10,000 fine.
  • Between 12 months and 36 months in jail. (Your judge might give you 120 days under probation cases involving alcohol monitoring for a minimum of 120 days.)
  • Monitored abstaining from alcohol for 4 months after prison release.
  • Substance abuse assessment.

What is considered Driving Under the Influence?

In North Carolina, Driving Under the Influence (“DUI”) is defined as driving or being in actual physical control of a vehicle while you are under the influence of alcohol or drugs upon the ways of the state open to the public.

What if I am taking prescription drugs, will I still get a DUI?

he fact that you are taking prescription drugs is not a defense to a DUI. The law specifically provides that you can still be punished for DUI if as a result of taking the prescription drugs, your ability to drive has been diminished.

What if I am a resident of another state and refuse to submit to a test?

If you are from another state and refuse to submit to a test in North Carolina, the arresting officer will take possession of your license and forward it to your home state’s licensing authority along with a report stating that you refused to submit to a test.

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