GA DUI Laws. The penalties for DUI Drugs in the Peach State used to be worse than a conviction for DUI Alcohol. However, GA D U I laws 2021 changed that to make the DUI penalty Georgia equal.
Is there Mandatory DUI jail time for a DUI first offense Georgia? If you submitted to the implied consent test and had a BAC level of 0.08 grams percent or more, the law does require 24 hours in jail as a minimum.
Georgia Drinking and Driving Laws and Drug Laws. Most people assume driving under the influence (DUI) only applies to the consumption of alcohol. That is erroneous, although drinking and driving laws in Georgia account for over 90% of all GA DUI arrests each year.
In fact, Georgia laws are broadly written to criminalized driving while being under the influence of anything that impairs your faculties. For example, a toxic vapors subsection exists under Georgia DUI laws 2023.
DUI Consequences Georgia for DUI-Drugs
In Georgia, a driver can be charged with “drugged driving” or “DUI-D,” driving under the influence of drugs, if he or she was in control of a motor vehicle while under the influence of marijuana or a controlled substance.
The Georgia BAC limit for various Drivers: (a) a limit of 0.08 grams percent for adult motorists, age 21 and over; (b) a limit of 0.02 grams % for those motorists under the age of 21; and (c) for CMV (commercial motor vehicle) operators, the permitted Georgia DUI limit of alcohol is 0.04 gr. percent.
Marijuana metabolites can create a positive blood test for up to 30 days after you smoked or ingested it, so a blood test could be positive, and you could be incorrectly charged. This is the “per se” law in Georgia, which states that you cannot have any amount of any drug in your system when driving, even if that drug is prescribed to you.
Georgia DUI consequences for Drugged Driving. This “per se” law applies to DUI-alcohol cases when your Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) level test results indicate a 0.08% or higher at the time you were driving. (BAC level is determined by a chemical test via blood, breath, or urine.) There is also a DUI-marijuana per se law under OCGA 40-6-391(a)(6), which reads.
” Subject to the provisions of subsection (b) of this Code section, there is any amount of marijuana or a controlled substance, as defined in Code Section 16-13-21, present in the person’s blood or urine, or both, including the metabolites and derivatives of each or both without regard to whether or not any alcohol is present in the person’s breath or blood.”
DUI Drugs in Georgia Usually Means DUI Marijuana
In Georgia, DUI charges trigger two types of penalties, criminal penalties and administrative penalties. Having a Georgia driver’s license is like having a contract with the state of Georgia that allows you to use the State’s roadways.
Under Georgia implied consent law, the police read you the implied consent notice and you either agree or refuse to submit to chemical testing (i.e., giving a breathalyzer, blood test, or urine test) after being lawfully arrested for DUI drugs or alcohol. All arrested DUI drivers should contact us immediately after arrest for a FREE lawyer consultation, to explore the various ways that your driving privileges can be protected.
This is due to a strict 30-day deadline for either appealing the administrative license suspension or installing the ignition interlock device. Not every driver is eligible for this interlock option and the limited driving permit, so call today before you erroneously try to have that done at a DDS GA office.
DUI Laws in Georgia for Administrative Suspension. A refusal of this test can result in a one-year driver’s license suspension as an administrative penalty for DUI in Georgia.
Under recent changes to Georgia DUI law, you now have 30 CALENDAR days to save your right to drive by requesting an administrative review hearing. Plus, for most Georgia licensees, you now have another option for anyone with a first-offense DUI within the past five years, by agreeing to install (and pay both the installation and monitor fees) an ignition interlock device on your vehicle.
What Are the Penalties for Marijuana DUI?
Georgia DUI penalties vary upon the type of DUI charge and if the offender has any prior charges of the same nature. Driving under the influence of marijuana (or any other drug) has multiple consequences that are harsher than DUI-alcohol cases. This list highlights those tough consequences:
- First DUI offense: a misdemeanor but carries a fine of up to $1,000 and 24 hours in jail, with further jail time of up to a full year possible.
- Mandatory alcohol or drug screening and treatment as necessary (based on your evaluation.)
- Second marijuana DUI offense: a minimum 72 hours in jail, with possible additional time (judge’s discretion) of up to one year;
- A fine of up to $1,000, plus surcharges.
- Surcharges for DUI drugs are DOUBLE the fine amount, which is worse than for DUI alcohol.
- Community service is required in all cases and can range from 40 to 480 hours (on a fourth DUI offense), depending on the offense (1st DUI, 2nd DUI in GA, 3rd DUI, etc.) A 4th DUI within 10 years (based on arrest dates) will be charged as a felony DUI in Georgia, due to a new statute enacted July 1, 2008.
- Probation for a full year, less any days you serve in jail.
- DUI classes, which is called the Risk Reduction Program, in Georgia. The DUI school certificate will be needed to get early license reinstatement. Click here for a list of locations that offer DUI classes in Ga.
- Finally, TOTAL license suspension for at least six months, and up to three full years.
- Third DUI drugs offense: A statutory minimum of 15 days in jail and up to a year, community service, drug or alcohol rehabilitation, and probation; license revocation for five years; an ignition interlock device is likely. A 3rd DUI in Ga. within five years can also trigger habitual violator status.
- Fourth DUI drug offenses and after: a felony. Fines up to $5,000, with not less than 90 days to five years in jail or state prison.
- DUI penalties could be harsher if you were transporting a child (or children) under age 14 while under the influence of alcohol or any drug including weed, if you had an accident involving a serious injury (or injuries) or if you had an accident resulting in the death of another person. These charges are felonies.
Frequently Asked Questions About DUIs
- Is a DUI a felony in GA?
- What is the wording of the Georgia DUI statute?
- What is the difference between a DUI and DWI?
- What are the penalties in GA for Driving While Intoxicated?
- What is the legal alcohol limit in Georgia?
- How much is the reinstatement fee for my license?
- Is it possible to get a DUI expunged from my record once I’m convicted?
Call Today to Our 24-Hour Georgia DUI Number
If you are facing any DUI charge, you need an experienced DUI attorney to fight for you. Call the law offices of Kohn & Yager, LLC. or William C. Head, P.C. to speak to one of our Atlanta DUI lawyers and DUI legal book co-authors Bubba Head, Larry Kohn, or ex-police officer Cory Yager at (404) 567-5515 to get the best DUI marijuana defense in Georgia.
We have helped thousands of clients who were wrongly accused of driving under the influence of marijuana. To get the best possible outcome, you need the best representation, and our DUI defense lawyers provide exactly that. Our criminal attorneys will go the extra mile for their clients, literally.
Our attorneys serve Bartow County, Cherokee County, Cobb County, Dekalb County, Fulton County, Gwinnett County, Henry County, Walton County, and several surrounding municipalities. Schedule your FREE consultation lawyer today to discuss the details of your DUI case by calling (404) 567-5515 or by clicking on the link below.
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