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What are the possible penalties for drunk driving in Kansas?

Drunk driving laws across the United States are quite similar, but it is still a good idea to become familiar with the specifics depending upon which state you call home. This is especially so if you or someone you know has been arrested for drunk driving. While the differences on a state-to-state basis are often small, learning the laws specific to your location might make all the difference in avoiding the harshest penalties.

In Kansas, as in most other states, it is illegal to drive an automobile with a blood alcohol content of 0.08 or higher. The state's basic penalties for DUI include:

-- First Offense: Either 48 hours in jail or 100 hours performing community service as well as up to $1,000 in fines and mandatory completion of an alcohol/drug safety program. Those convicted will also lose their driving privileges for at least 30 days and will have only limited driving privileges for a further 300 days.

-- Second Offense: 90 days to a year in jail along with a fine of $1,000 to $1,500. Convictions will also result in loss of driving privileges for one year and then the use of an ignition interlock device for another year. Defendants will also have to complete a mandatory alcohol/drug treatment program.

-- Third Offense: A felony, the third offense will mean a maximum $2,500 fine, 90 days to a year in jail, completing a drug/alcohol treatment program and curtailed driving privileges along with the mandatory use of an ignition interlock device.

Additional DUI offenses will result in even harsher penalties, and those convicted could lose their driving licenses permanently after a fifth offense. The goal after any arrest for driving while impaired is to avoid conviction, which can seriously impact one's life. Working with a drunk driving attorney is the best way to accomplish this goal.

Source: Kansas Department of Transportation, "Kansas DUI Laws" accessed Jan. 22, 2015

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