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Third Offense DUI in Tennessee

Any DUI conviction has serious consequences. These consequences increase dramatically every time you are convicted of DUI. A third-offense DUI will result in substantial jail time, years of license suspension, and thousands of dollars in fines and costs. If you are convicted of a third offense, there are mandatory penalties and neither the judge nor the prosecutor is allowed to be lenient.

Criminal Penalties

If you have two prior DUI convictions within the past ten years and get a third one, it is considered your third offense. Even though you might not have two convictions within the last ten years, if you have one prior DUI conviction within ten years, and another within ten years of that conviction, you can still be held accountable for a 3rd Offense. Here are the mandatory penalties:

  • Jail: Under Tennessee law, a third-offense DUI has a minimum 120 days in jail. This must be served day for day. The maximum time is 11 months, 29 days. However, if you had a passenger under the age of 18 in the car with you, 30 days of jail time will be added to your sentence. You would be eligible to receive sentencing credits for completion of a court-ordered substance abuse program.
  • Probation: Once the minimum time is served in jail, the judge will place the offender on probation for the remaining term of the sentence. You may also have to comply with other requirements, such as using an alcohol-monitoring ankle bracelet.
  • Fines: Your conviction of a third-offense DUI may include fines from $1,100 to $10,000.

Revoked Driver’s License

As an additional consequence, you will also face administrative penalties, such as a revoked driver’s license. For a third DUI, the time of revocation is six years. The judge does have the ability to grant you a restricted license, which lets you operate your vehicle, but only if you have an ignition interlock installed. You will have to install this ignition interlock device at your expense.

Whether it’s your first, second or third offense, a DUI conviction will have harmful and permanent consequences. You need a lawyer to protect your rights. It’s important to contact an attorney experienced in DUIs for legal representation to find the best outcome for you.

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