Connecticut DUI Law Information
Drivers arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs (DUI) in Connecticut may be charged with DUI and face jail time, fines, and a driver’s license suspension.
Connecticut DUI defined
Connecticut DUI laws prohibit a person from driving while under the influence of alcohol or drugs or with an elevated blood alcohol content (BAC). According to Connecticut law, a person is “under the influence” if their ability to drive is affected to an “appreciable degree.”
Drivers over the age of 21 will be considered to have an elevated BAC if their BAC is 0.08% or higher. Commercial drivers, however, will be considered to have an elevated BAC if their BAC is 0.04% or higher.
Connecticut Look Back period: 10 years
Connecticut has a ten year look back period, which means a second or third DUI conviction within 10 years may increase the penalties or sentencing.
Criminal DUI Penalties in Connecticut
First DUI offense
- Two days to six months jail time with a mandatory 2 day minimum or up to six months with a suspended sentence with probation requiring 100 hours of community service
- Fines of $500 to $1,000
- Forty-five days license suspension followed by one year driving with an ignition interlock device
Second DUI offense (within 10 years)
- 120 days up to 2 years in prison, although part of the sentence can be suspended with additional community service
- Fines of $1,000 to $4,000
- License suspension of one year followed by a 3 year interlock ignition device. During the first year of the device drivers may only drive to work, school, a drug or alcohol treatment center, or an interlock service center
Third DUI offense (within 10 years)
- One year up to 3 years in prison, although the sentence can be suspended in favor of probation with additional community service
- Fines of $2,000 to $8,000
- Permanent license revocation, although the driver may petition for a restoration of their license after 2 years. The commissioner may allow the restoration of the license, but the driver must operate the vehicle only if it is equipped with an ignition interlock device. The driver may request the device be lifted after 15 years, which the commissioner may allow after a hearing and for good cause.
Administrative Penalties in Connecticut
Drivers in Connecticut have given their implied consent to submit to a chemical test if they have been arrested for DUI. Failure to consent to the required testing may result in administrative penalties, which are administered by the Connecticut Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) and are imposed regardless of whether the driver is ultimately convicted for DUI.
First time DUI offenders who refuse the chemical test will have their license automatically suspended for six months. Second time DUI offenders will receive a one year license suspension, and third time DUI offenders will receive a three year license suspension. Drivers who submit and fail the chemical test will also receive an automatic license suspension ranging from 90 days to 2 ½ years.
To challenge an administrative license suspension, drivers must request an administrative hearing by contacting the Connecticut Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV). A hearing will be held within 30 days from the date of the request. Drivers may continue to legally drive with their temporary driving permit until the date of their hearing.