The criminal penalties you receive for a DWI in Minnesota will depend on several key factors including whether or not this is your first violation and if there was any severe damage as a result of your DWI.
If it is your first impaired driving violation in 10 years and there are no aggravating factors and no test refusal, this is considered a fourth degree DWI which is a misdemeanor. You could spend up to 90 days in jail and be charged a $1000 fine.
If this is your second impaired driving violation in 10 years or your first violation with test refusal or some other aggravating factor, this is third degree DWI and is a gross misdemeanor. You could spend up to one year in jail and be charged a $3000 fine.
Next would be a second degree DWI which is also a gross misdemeanor. This applies to the individual who has three impaired driving violations within 10 years.
It also applies if it is your second violation with test refusal or any other aggravated factor. Second degree DWI has the same punishment as a third degree DWI.
First degree DWI is a felony and can result in you spending up to 7 years in prison and getting a $14,000 fine.
A first degree DWI applies to the individual who has four impaired driving violations within a 10 year time frame. If you have a previous felony DWI or a criminal vehicular operation charge, you will be convicted of a first degree DWI.
Other Penalties To Be Aware Of
Under Minnesota law, if an individual gets a DWI conviction their license will automatically be suspended or revoked. Even a first time offense can result in your license being suspended for 90 days.
In some cases, if your case involves aggravating factors, your license plate may be impounded or your vehicle could be forfeited.
Depending on your situation a judge may grant you a limited license. This will require you install an Ignition Interlock Device in your car.
Before you can start your vehicle you will be required to blow into the device. If your blood alcohol level is 0.02% or higher, you will not be able to start your car. If you are a repeat DWI offender you will be required to serve a minimum sentence.
If you are a commercial driver and you get a DWI conviction, your license can be suspended for up to 10 years.