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Boats & Beers: A Criminal Combination

Many Minnesotans enjoy adult beverages while boating in the land of the 10,000 lakes; unfortunately, a boating while under the influence (BWI) charge can lead to severe consequences. In this blog post, we will look at the criminal penalties of a BWI conviction in Minnesota.

Minnesota BWI Charges

As stated on the Minnesota Statutes webpage, it is a crime for any person to operate or be in physical control of a motorboat in operation on any waters or boundary waters when he or she is under the influence of drugs, alcohol, or other intoxicating substances.

If an operator is accused of a boating while under the influence crime, he or she can face Minnesota charges ranging from misdemeanor to felony level. The level of offense will depend on a variety of factors such as blood alcohol concentration, whether an accident occurred, whether minor children were involved, and prior DWI/BWI related convictions.

First-Time BWI Penalties

If convicted of a first-time BWI charge in Minnesota, the maximum penalties include:

  • A jail sentence of up to 90 days; or
  • A fine of up to $1,000; or
  • Both penalties.

Loss of Driving Privileges

In addition to criminal penalties, a person charged with a BWI can face administrative sanctions. For example, Minnesotans charged with a BWI could lose their driver’s licenses as well as their boating, ATV, and snowmobiling privileges.

Need Help With Your BWI?

If you or a loved one is criminally charged with a BWI, you’ll want experienced representation on your side. Caplan & Tamburino is an award-winning law firm that’s helped thousands of clients with their BWIs and other alcohol-related charges.

Call (612) 444-5020 now for a free consultation for your BWI charge!


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