A persistent drunk driver is a designation the Colorado DMV imposes on certain aggravated DUI offenders, resulting in a driver’s license revocation. There are 4 ways a motorist can sustain this penalty: by driving with a BAC greater than 0.15%, by refusing to take a DUI chemical test, by suffering multiple DUI convictions, or by driving on a license suspended for DUI.
Before your driving privilege will be restored under Colorado state law, you will need to:
- complete a level II alcohol education and treatment program regarding driving under the influence,1
- install an ignition interlock device on your vehicle, which you must maintain for at least two years2, and
- provide proof of financial responsibility (so-called “SR-22 insurance coverage”) for at least two years.3
What is a Colorado persistent drunk driver?
The Colorado DMV will label you for persistent drunk driving if:
- You have two or more DUI convictions (or other alcohol-related driving convictions),
- You have had a driver’s license revoked for two or more alcohol-related driving offense,
- You drive after your license has been suspended or revoked due to an alcohol-related driving violation,
- You drive with a blood alcohol concentration / blood alcohol content (BAC) of .15% or more (even if it is your first offense), or
- You refuse to take or complete a DUI chemical test following an arrest for DUI, DWAI or UDD (even if it is your first-time offense)4
Note that the .15% PDD designation is effective as of January 1, 2014. Before 2014, the BAC required for a PDD designation was .17%.
Defenses to a Colorado PDD designation
You have the right to challenge a PDD designation at a Colorado DMV license hearing. But you must request the hearing within 7 days of your drunk driving arrest.
The main defenses to a persistent drunk driver designation involve challenging the underlying drunk driving violation. Common DUI defenses that defense attorneys use are:
- Law enforcement had no probable cause to pull over your motor vehicle,
- Your arrest was not lawful,
- The officer failed to advise you of the consequences of a chemical test refusal, or
- There were errors in your DUI blood test or DUI breath test that gave false results of the amount of alcohol in your blood.
Additionally, if you took a DUI blood test, you can have your blood sample independently tested. If the test results are inconsistent, a court can overturn the DMV designation.
In Denver, our law firm is conveniently located at:
Colorado Legal Defense Group
4047 Tejon Street
Denver, CO 80211
- Colorado Revised Statutes 42-2-126 C.R.S.
- 42-2-132.5(1)(a)(II), C.R.S.
- 42-7-406, C.R.S.
- 42-1-102(68.5), C.R.S.