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We have over a century of collective legal experience and have been practicing in state and federal courts across Minnesota since 1983.

Multiple DWI Offenses in Minnesota

Protect Yourself Against Serious Penalties

A DWI conviction is always a serious offense, but did you know that multiple DWI offenses in Minnesota could result in enhanced charges? The more DWI arrests a person has had in the last 10 years, the greater the penalties they will face. Jail time will be longer, fines will be higher, and the severity of the charge could increase from a misdemeanor to a felony.

If you are facing repeat DWI charges, there is still hope for legal defense. Call Caplan & Tamburino Law Firm, P.A. to speak to a lawyer today!

How Multiple Offenses are Determined in Minnesota

Minnesota law has what is referred to as a ten-year “look-back” period that is used to determine whether a repeat DWI offense has occurred. This means that a DWI conviction can be used to enhance a subsequent offense for a period of ten years. For example, if you received a DWI twelve years ago and another DWI today, your second offense would be punished in the same way as your first. However, if you received a DWI eight years ago and another today, your new DWI would be enhanced to a more severe charge.

Overview of the Penalties for a Second DWI Conviction

In the state of Minnesota, there are four degrees of impaired driving charges: first degree, second degree, third degree, and fourth degree. Ultimately, the severity of your charges will depend on the number of aggravating factors present in your case—which may include prior DWI convictions, high blood alcohol levels, and/or the presence of a child in your vehicle at the time of the offense.

If you have been charged with your second DWI offense within 10 years of a prior conviction, you will automatically face third degree, gross misdemeanor DWI charges. However, if your blood alcohol concentration was also at .20 or greater, or a child was in your vehicle, your charges could be elevated to second degree DWI—as you would now have two aggravating factors present in your case.

The penalties for a third degree DWI offense may include:

  • Up to $3,000 in criminal fines
  • Maximum jail sentence of one year
  • One-year license revocation

The penalties for a second degree DWI offense may include:

  • Up to $3,000 in criminal fines
  • Maximum jail sentence of one year
  • Two-year license revocation

Enhanced Penalties for Multiple DWIs

For a first DWI offense with a BAC of .20 or less, the driver will be sentenced to up to 90 days in jail and/or a fine of $1,000, and may possibly have their license revoked, their vehicle impounded, or have an Ignition Interlock Device (IID) installed in their car.

Without any other aggravating factors, like having a BAC of .20 or more or having a child in the car, the first offense is classified as a misdemeanor. Otherwise, the charge escalates to a gross misdemeanor, and is treated the same way that a second or third offense would. Gross misdemeanor charges include a one-year jail sentence and/or a $3,000 fine, and require whiskey plates to be installed on the vehicle which will make your vehicle more recognizable to law enforcement.

A fourth DWI in ten years is classified as a felony in Minnesota and is punishable by up to seven years in prison and/or a fine of up to $14,000, vehicle forfeiture, license cancellation, and more.

Seek the Help of Experienced DWI Lawyers

If you are facing a second or subsequent DWI charge, legal defense may still be an option for you. Contact the Minneapolis, MN DWI attorneys from Caplan & Tamburino Law Firm, P.A. to discuss what options are available for your case. We may be able to challenge the admissibility of evidence gathered against you, especially if it was obtained by violating your rights, and may be able to help you avoid jail time by voluntarily getting onto the ignition interlock program.

For a complimentary and confidential consultation, please contact our firm at (612) 444-5020.

Put Our Attorneys On Your Side

Our team has 100 years of collective experience. Our lawyers, Allan Caplan and Joe Tamburino, are frequently featured on local news networks, including radio and television appearances on Fox and WCCO radio. This has helped Caplan & Tamburino Law Firm, P.A. rise to prominence and gain a solid reputation of fighting vigorously not only for our clients, but also against the injustices they face when they have been charged with a crime or have been wrongfully injured.

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