West Virginia Drunk Driving Laws

Speeding, running a red light, or reckless driving is enough for West Virginia police to pull you over and try to find out if you are drunk. If you were charged with a DUI under West Virginia drunk driving laws, prepare yourself for the harsh consequences of a DUI conviction. For information about your legal options, talk to a West Virginia DUI defense attorney to help resolve your case.

West Virginia Drunk Driving Laws

West Virginia law prohibits driving while in an impaired state caused by using alcohol, drugs, or another substance, or with a BAC of .08% or more.

Commercial drivers may be charged with a DUI for a BAC of .04% or more. Drivers under 21 years old may be charged with a BAC of .02% or more, but these cases often result in special penalties of reduced fines or jail time along with license revocation.

Implied Consent: Yes

Enhanced Penalties: BAC of .15% or more; driving while impaired with a child who is under the age of 16 in your car; accident-causing serious bodily injury or death; prior convictions

A first-time offense is a misdemeanor charge with penalties including up to six months in jail, a $100 to $500 fine, a 6-month license suspension, mandatory DUI classes, license reinstatement fees, and an ignition interlock device.

However, first-time offenders are often eligible for a deferred prosecution program, which reduces or eliminates the penalties like jail time and can result in a complete dismissal of the charge. These programs typically require completing the Motor Vehicle Alcohol Test and Lock Program with DUI classes, a 15-day license revocation, and a 165-day ignition interlock device (IID) requirement.

Other offenses are considered felony offenses with much more serious consequences and may result in a permanent driver’s license revocation.

What Is Impaired Driving in West Virginia?

  • West Virginia’s law has a blood alcohol concentration (BAC), as measured by a chemical test, of .08% but if you are a driver under the age of 21 or a commercial driver the BAC limit is lower and includes:
  • Under 21 Years Old: 0.02 % or .07%
  • Commercial Driver: 0.04 %

What Are Potential Defenses to Drunk Driving?

Some potential defenses to drunk driving can include:

  • The officer did not have a valid reason to stop your vehicle
  • The officer did not have probable cause to make an arrest
  • The officer didn’t follow the proper procedures for chemical testing

If you are facing a drunk driving charge in West Virginia, an experienced West Virginia criminal defense attorney can review your case and build a strong defense to give you the best possible outcome.

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