Iowa DUI 101

Drinking and then getting behind the wheel is never a good idea, but if you happen to get into that predicament, here is what you need to know about getting an Iowa DUI.

What Constitutes an Iowa DUI?

In Iowa, as in most of the other states, you’re looking at a Blood Alcohol Content level, or BAC, of .08 percent to be considered legally intoxicated. If you are a commercial driver, that number drops down to .04 percent. If you are under the legal drinking age of 21, you cannot have a BAC of higher than .02 percent.

DUI Penalties, Restricted Licenses and Programs

If you are convicted of an Iowa DUI, your first conviction could leave you with a minimum of two days in jail and $625 in fines, as well as a suspension of your license for 180 days. If you have a BAC of .10 percent or less, it is possible for you to get a restricted license, if allowed, but you will be required to have an ignition interlock device placed on your car. A court could also order you to undergo a substance abuse evaluation and treatment program, attend a drinking driver’s course or even take part in community service.

A second DUI conviction in Iowa could land you in jail for a minimum of seven days and up to two years. You could also face a minimum $1,875 fine and a suspension of your license for two years. A judge could issue you a restricted license after 90 days, but you will also have to install an ignition interlock device on your vehicle. In addition, the court may also order substance abuse evaluation and treatment, a drinking driver’s course or community service, and your vehicle could also be impounded.

A third DUI conviction in Iowa is considered a Class “D” felony. It could bring you a fine of $3,125 and a minimum of 30 days in jail. You could also have your license suspended for six years. After a year, you could be eligible for a restricted license, although an ignition interlock device would be required on your vehicle. And again, the court could also order you to enter a substance abuse evaluation and treatment program, take a special course or participate in community service.

Implied Consent Law

Like other states, Iowa has an Implied Consent Law. This means that if you refuse to take a blood alcohol test when stopped by a peace officer on suspicion of being under the influence, you could be subject to jail time and having your license suspended.

On your first offense, you could be sent to jail for two days and have your license revoked for one year. A second refusal of a blood alcohol test could have your license revoked for two years and land you in jail for a minimum of seven days. A test refusal for the third time could land you in jail for a minimum of 30 days and lead to you losing your license for two years.

Many states are cracking down on drinking and driving, and Iowa is no exception. The best solution is to not drink and drive, and just hand over the keys to someone else if necessary before you end up with an Iowa DUI.