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Penalties & Details about DUIs & DWIs

Driving under the influence (DUI), or driving while impaired (DWI), is the crime or offense of operating a vehicle while impaired by alcohol or other drugs (including recreational drugs and those prescribed by physicians), to a level that renders the driver incapable of operating a motor vehicle safely. In the state of Nevada, the “standard” penalties a first-time DUI are: two days to six months in jail OR twenty-four to 96 hours of community service. Courts usually impose a suspended jail sentence of 6 months.

Fines surrounding first-time offense range from $400 to $1,000; not including court costs. You will need a DUI Lawyer Las Vegas specialist attorney if you end up in this situation.  Las Vegas courts usually impose a net $600 fine for first-time offenders. If your Blood Alcohol Count (BAC) is .18 or greater, an alcohol/drug dependency evaluation that costs $100. 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).

Penalties for a second-time DUI in the state of Nevada (within seven years of the first one) include; ten days to six months in jail or residential confinement (house arrest). One year suspension or revocation of one’s driver’s license, five-day registration suspension, and a $35 civil penalty fee. 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. Third DUI conviction can result in a felony record, confinement in a Nevada prison for one to six years, fines (ranging from $2,000 to $5,000), three-year driver’s license suspension, five-day registration suspension, and a $35 civil penalty. 

In America, someone is killed every fifty-one in a drunk driving related accident, 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. Vehicular homicide is the most serious offense that a drunk driver in Las Vegas, Nevada, can be convicted of for allegedly causing a fatal car crashing or hitting a pedestrian and causing a fatality.

The legal definition of “vehicular homicide” in Las Vegas, Nevada, applies only in cases where the driver meets the following three criteria:


1. He/she is under the influence of alcohol and drugs,
2. He/she already has three (3) prior DUI convictions, and
3. He/she “proximately causes the death of another person while driving or in actual physical control of a vehicle on or off the highways of this State.”
Vehicular homicide laws in Nevada are therefore targeted solely at habitual DUI offenders. So, if someone has only two prior DUI convictions and is then accused of killing someone by drunk driving, he/she would instead be charged with “felony DUI causing death in Las Vegas,” which has less harsh penalties. Beware not to get “vehicular homicide” confused with “vehicular manslaughter in Nevada,” which are entirely separate crimes. The latter is only a misdemeanor, and it is charged when a driver’s “simple negligence” causes the death of another whether alcohol was involved.

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