When you endanger not only your own life but the lives of others with your choices, the punishment must fit the offense. Which is why when you get caught drinking and driving, the penalties for a Virginia DUI are harsh. The Commonwealth wants to be certain you are discouraged from ever attempting to drive under the influence again. That means that even for a first time drunk driver, the penalties are certain to make you think twice about ever risking a DUI again.
Virginia is one of the many states that cannot only immediately revoke your license administratively if your blood alcohol concentration (BAC) is over .08% but requires the use of an ignition interlock device on your first Virginia DUI offense. Judicial punishments for a Virginia DUI include:
- Court and administrative fines.
- Jail time.
- Driver’s license revocation.
- Virginia Alcohol Safety Action Program (VASAP) screening, education, and treatment.
- Possible vehicle impoundment.
- Mandatory installation of an ignition interlock device.
In Virginia, you cannot drive with or without an ignition interlock device without a restricted license after a Virginia DUI. You can prequalify for installation by signing up for the Virginia Safety Action Program prior to your court case.
Getting back on the road in Virginia after a DUI conviction means you will need to:
- Show up for your court appearance.
- Report to your local VASAP office and receive your list of ignition interlock device providers, choose one within 48 hours and let the VASAP office know.
- Make an appointment and have your ignition interlock device installed.
- Submit proof of installation to your ASAP supervisor so they can notify the DMV.
- Got to the DMV and get your restricted license.
You can spare yourself all of these penalties and steps if you just don’t drink and drive. When you are heading out for a night on the town, be prepared with a designated driver or the number of a taxi service to return your group home safely.