Under Nevada's DUI statute, the offense is normally a misdemeanor with fairly standardized penalties. However sentencing and punishment become much harsher which each successive DUI conviction within a seven-year period, or if the DUI caused the death or substantial injury of a third party. Continue reading to learn more about Nevada DUI punishments.
The "standard" penalties for first-time DUI in Nevada are:
- 2 days to 6 months in jail OR 24 hour to 96 hours of community service in Nevada (the court usually imposes a suspended jail sentence in Nevada of 6 months)
- Nevada DUI School (an alcohol awareness program at your own expense)
- Fines ranging from $400 to $1,000 plus court costs (Las Vegas courts usually impose a net $600 fine for first-offense DUI)
- Nevada Victim Impact Panel (a MADD lecture)
- If you are under 21 or if your BAC was .18 or greater, an alcohol/drug dependency evaluation that costs $100
- If your BAC was .18 or greater, an alcohol or drug abuse treatment program
- If your BAC was .18 or greater, a Nevada Breath Interlock Device in your car for 12 months to 36 months (if your BAC was less than .18, the court may order the Breath Interlock Device for 3 months to 6 months)
- 185-day suspension of your driver's license and a $35 civil penalty fee (you may be able to get a restricted license with an ignition interlock device)
For more information about DUI 1st penalties in Nevada, go to our article on DUI 1st penalties in Nevada.
The "standard" penalties for second-time DUI in Nevada (within seven years of the first one) are:
- 10 days to 6 months in jail OR residential confinement
- Fines ranging from $750 to $1,000 or an equivalent number of hours of community service (Las Vegas courts usually impose a net $1,100 fine for a second-offense DUI)
- Nevada Victim Impact Panel
- An alcohol/drug dependency evaluation that costs $100
- 1-year driver's license suspension or revocation, 5-day registration suspension, and a $35 civil penalty fee
- A lengthy alcohol or drug abuse treatment program (DUI Court)
- Ignition interlock device for 185 days.
- If your BAC was .18 or greater, a Nevada Breath Interlock Device in your car for 12 months to 36 months as a condition of obtaining a restricted license or reinstating your license
For more information about DUI 2nd penalties in Nevada, go to our article on DUI 2nd penalties in Nevada.
The "standard" penalties for third-time DUI in Nevada (within seven years of the first one):
Whereas first- and second- time DUI convictions within a seven-year period are only misdemeanors in Las Vegas, a third offense drunk driving conviction is a category B felony. The penalties for a third offense are:
- Nevada prison commitment of 1 to 6 years
- Fines ranging from $2,000 to $5,000
- Victim Impact Panel
- A Breath Interlock Device on your car for 12 months to 36 months after your release
- 3-year driver's license suspension or revocation, 5-day registration suspension, and a $35 civil penalty fee
- An alcohol & drug evaluation
Nevada DUI law provides that a person imprisoned for drunk driving should be segregated from more violent offenders and housed in minimum-security facilities.
Also see our article about violating DUI probation in Nevada.
Punishment for a DUI Causing Injury or Death:
If an intoxicated driver causes an accident that brings injury or death to another person, the driver faces a more serious Category B felony. The punishment ranges from 2 to 20 years in state prison with fines ranging from $2,000 to $5,000.
Moreover, state DUI law limits the discretion of prosecutors to "plea bargain" these charges down, unless the evidence is weak. Again, a person imprisoned for Nevada DUI causing injury or death is to be segregated from more violent offenders.
Punishment for Vehicular Homicide:
Nevada Vehicular homicide is charged only when someone's drunk driving causes a fatality and that person has three previous DUI convictions. It is a category A felony carrying twenty-five years in prison or a life sentence, with the possibility of parole after 10 years.
How to drive with a DUI license suspension
People whose driver's licenses were suspended due to a Nevada DUI case may be able to get a "temporary driver's licenses" if they seek a Nevada DMV hearing to contest the license suspension. And once the suspension period is half done, they may be able to get a restricted license so they can drive to and from work. Read about temporary driver's licenses and restricted driver's licenses in Nevada DUI law in our article on temporary driver's licenses and restricted driver's licenses in Nevada DUI law.
Drunk Driving with a Child
DUI defendants who were transporting a child under 15 at the time will received an enhanced punishment. Learn more in our article on DUI with a child in Nevada.
In some cases, DUI defendants have to wear ankle devices that monitor the person's alcohol levels. Learn more about Nevada SCRAM devices in DUI cases.
Seek Legal Counsel if You Face a Las Vegas DUI Charge
As you can see, penalties under the Nevada DUI statute can be harsh. But the worst part of a drunk driving conviction may be the indirect consequences: higher car insurance premiums, a faulty driving record, and a criminal history that likely will surface on a background check when you apply for a job.
It is not always possible to avoid these consequences . . . but many times it is. Favorable evidence and defenses may exist. This could give you leverage to negotiate a charge reduction or a good chance of winning at trial. Contact one of our Las Vegas NV DUI lawyers at 702-DEFENSE (702-333-3673) to analyze the facts of your case.
¿Habla español? Obtener información acerca de las sanciones por conducir bajo la influencia (DUI) en Nevada.
For information about California DUI penalties, go to our article on California DUI penalties.