Penalties For OWI

Criminal Offense OWI (Prior Offenses) – Minors/Injuries

Unlike the first OWI offense in Wisconsin, If you have a second OWI offense within 10 years of your first offense it will be charged as a crime. Wisconsin increases the penalties for any person caught transporting a minor under the age of 16 while under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs.
Penalties:
1st Offense OWI – (noncriminal)
Fine: $150-$300 (plus $435 OWI surcharge)
Confinement: None
Driving Consequences: 6-9 month revocation, IID only for >.15
Can apply immediately for occupational license

2nd Offense OWI (no prior OWI within 10 years) – (noncriminal)
Fine: $150-$300 (plus $435 OWI surcharge)
Confinement: None
Driving Consequences: 6-9 month revocation
Can apply immediately for occupational license. Absolute sobriety required.

2nd Offense OWI (OWI within 10 years) – (misdemeanor)
Fine: $350-$1,100 (plus $435 OWI surcharge)
Confinement: 5 days to 6 months confinement
Driving Consequences: 12 – 18+ month revocation. Can apply for occupational license after 45 days.

3rd Offense OWI – (misdemeanor)
Fine: $600-$2,000 (plus $435 OWI surcharge)
Confinement: 45 days to 1 year confinement
Driving Consequences: 2 -3 plus years revocation. Can apply for occupational license after 45 days.

4th Offense OWI – (felony)
Fine: $600-$10,000 (plus $435 OWI surcharge)
Confinement: Class H Felony, 6 months to 6 years
Driving Consequences: Lifetime revocation. Can apply for occupational license after 45 days.

5th and up are Felony charges with harsher penalties than a 4 offense OWI.

Minor under 16 in the car

Penalties are often doubled if a minor under the age of 16 was in the vehicle at the time of the offense. For a first OWI offense and a second OWI offense with no prior offenses in the preceding 10 years, fines are more than doubled, jail time is added, and revocation penalties are doubled.

For a second OWI offense (with prior convictions within 10 years) of offense as well as third or greater OWI offenses and causing injury while intoxicated offenses, fines/forfeitures, jail time and suspensions/revocations penalties are doubled.

For causing great bodily harm or homicide while intoxicated offenses and chemical test refusals, the revocation penalties are doubled. Penalties and the revocation are also doubled for causing great bodily harm or homicide by intoxicated use if an unborn child is in the vehicle at the time of the offense.

Was your 2nd offense after 10 years from your First?

If you have received a second offense OWI 10 years after your first offense in Wisconsin it will be a traffic ticket and not a criminal case. This means you will not face jail time. The penalties for a second offense after 10 years is a revocation of 6-9 months and a year order for an IID. You can apply immediately for an occupational driver’s license.

OWI Causing injury

If you were charged with an OWI causing injury it will increase the severity of the penalties for your OWI. A number of variables will determine the charges.
Penalties:

Causing injury while OWI (no prior OWI offense)
Fine: $300-$2,000 (plus $435 OWI surcharge)
Confinement: 30 days-1 year
Driving Consequences: 1- 2 years plus revocation. Can apply for occupational license after 60 days.

Causing injury while OWI (with prior OWI offense)
Fine: Up to $10,000
Confinement: Class H Felony, Up to 6 years confinement
Driving consequences: 1-2+ years plus revocation. Can apply for occupational license after 60 days, except if 2 or more offenses within 5 years can apply after 1 year

Causing great bodily harm by OWI
Fine: Up to $25,000
Confinement: Class F Felony up to 12.5 years confinement
Driving Consequences: 2 year+ revocation. Can apply after 120 days, except if 2 or more offenses within 5 years can apply after 1 year.

Homicide with OWI
Fine: Up to $100,000
Confinement: Class D Felony, up to 25 years confinement
Driving Consequences: 5 year plus confinement. Can apply after 120 days, except if 2 or more offenses within 5 years can apply after 1 year.

Huber Work Release

Huber is a privilege that allows an inmate to go to work while they are incarcerated. The judge must grant Huber and then the jail will verify the employment and determine whether all requirements are met. If your OWI case requires a confinement sentence Lee Law Firm LLC. will help you get Huber work release if you are eligible for it.

Electronic Monitoring (House Arrest)

In some cases, for an OWI confinement the county jail will allow electronic monitoring. In order to determine if you are eligible for electronic monitoring they will look at the level of the offense and your personal situation. Lee Law Firm LLC. is committed to assisting you with all incarceration issues including electronic monitoring and Huber work release.

Breathalyzer in the car (IID)

If you are convicted of a criminal OWI charge you will be subject to putting an IID in your vehicle(s). This is the breathalyzer device that requires you to blow into it in order to drive.
It’s important to understand that:.

  • The court will order an IID on any repeat offender (2nd offense and up), any first offender with a BAC of 0.15 or more and any person who refuses a chemical test.
  • A driver subject to an IID order will have his/her Class D operating privileges restricted for a minimum of 1 year to a maximum period equal to the length of the driver’s revocation (which includes extensions for confinement and for having a minor under 16 or an unborn child in the vehicle at the time of the offense).
  • The IID restriction will begin on the date the driver obtains any license (including occupational license) in Wisconsin.
  • The IID order also requires the installation of IIDs on every vehicle titled or registered in the driver’s name, unless undue financial hardship would result.
  • Courts can require the vehicle order to begin immediately. Courts will charge a $50 IID Surcharge when issuing IID orders.
  • A 24/7 sobriety program may be substituted for IID participation, if court approved.

Occupational Licenses

Anyone whose operating privileges have been suspended or revoked may apply for an occupational license to drive between home and work or school. Obtaining an occupational license will require payment of $240 ($50 reinstatement fee + $140 OWI-related fee + $40 occupational fee license + $10 license issuance fee). No occupational license may be issued to an offender who fails to pay $50 IID surcharge. Anyone with two or more suspensions, revocations or convictions counted under must complete assessment and be in compliance with a driver safety plan and submit proof of the IID installed to be eligible for an occupational license.

Waiting period for occupational driver’s license

If you have an OWI criminal conviction in the state of Wisconsin there is a waiting period before you can get an occupational driver’s license. This time period can range from 45 – 120 days depending on the offense.

ABOUT OWI CHARGES

In the state of Wisconsin, being convicted of driving under the influence (DUI) or operating while intoxicated (OWI) can include jail time, significant fines, losing your license and additional penalties depending on any previous offenses. Based on your specific case, you may have only ten days to object to the suspension of your driver’s license from the time you were arrested. Because OWI and DUI charges carry severe penalties, it is in your best interest to consult with an attorney as soon as possible. Lee Law Firm LLC. is committed to helping you build your OWI defense and positioning you for the best possible outcome for your case.

For a free, 30-minute consultation with a Milwaukee criminal defense lawyer, please call us at (414) 600-1360.

FAQ

  • The following constitutes OWI or DUI:

    • Driving with a Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) of .08 percent or higher. If you are stopped for an OWI with a blood or breath test that registers at .08 percent or higher, you are considered intoxicated and unable to operate a vehicle safely.

    • Driving under the influence of drugs, alcohol, and/or chemical substances.

    • Driving with any detectable amount of intoxicant in your system.

    • Driving under the influence of any drug.

  • You do not have to consent to a test. If you refuse, you will be given a Notice of Intent to Revoke Operating Privilege. You will have ten days to request a court hearing. If you do not request a hearing or lose the hearing, your license will be suspended for at least one year.

  • If you consent to a test and the result of the test is above the legal limit, you will be given a Notice of Intent to Revoke Operating Privilege. You have ten days to request an administrative hearing to challenge the suspension of your license. Failure to request a hearing or losing the hearing will cause your license to be suspended for six months. You may also receive additional penalties, if you are convicted.

  • A first offense OWI or DUI is considered a civil offense — not a criminal offense. Penalties for a first offense OWI or DUI can include fines up to $800 and having your license suspended for at least six months.
    Second and third offenses of OWIs and DUIs are misdemeanors. Penalties include significantly larger fines, longer driver’s license suspensions, and time in jail. A fourth conviction and consecutive convictions are felony charges.