Will I go to jail for my first DUI in New Orleans

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Being arrested for a DUI can be a scary experience, and unfortunately, the arrest is only the beginning. 

There are countless ways that a DUI arrest in New Orleans can impact your life, but working with tenacious DUI defense attorneys like George Vourvoulias can help minimize those harmful effects and can help you fight against a conviction. 

Let’s take a look at the penalties for DUI in New Orleans, Louisiana.

Will I Go To Jail For My First DUI In New Orleans?

While it may not be the answer you want to hear, yes, there is a chance that your DUI arrest can lead to jail time – even if it’s your first offense. 

Unlike many other convictions for first-offense misdemeanors, a DUI in Louisiana can lead to significant jail time, as well as other penalties on a first-time conviction.

Penalties For First-Time DUI In New Orleans

While you might think that you’ll only need a lawyer to fight charges of violent crime or other “more serious” allegations, this can result in a poor defense that sees you get the maximum penalties. 

Even though a DUI with no prior convictions is considered a misdemeanor by the state, don’t make the mistake of thinking this is because it’s a lesser crime. Even your first conviction can result in significant jail time, fines, and additional punitive and administrative measures. 

The penalties for a first-time DUI conviction in Louisiana include:

  • Minimum fine of $300 and a maximum of $1,000
  • Minimum jail time of 10 days and maximum of 6 months
  • Up to two years’ probation
  • Community service of at least 32 hours

Additionally, the penalties for each subsequent conviction become more severe. 

Exacerbating Circumstances in your New Orleans DUI Case

Several situations can have an intensifying effect on your potential penalties if you are convicted under any of them. Some may result in additional or more serious charges or may contribute to longer and more severe penalties. 

Some of these situations include:

  • Being at fault for an accident with injuries or property damage while driving under the influence
  • DUI charges and arrests while a minor is in the vehicle
  • BAC of 0.15 or greater at the time of testing
  • Refusal to submit to any common or required BAC test including breath, blood, or urine

Refusal to submit to testing will not affect your potential charges, but will result in the automatic and non-contestable suspension of your license upon conviction.

Count George Vourvoulias To Fight For You

The New Orleans criminal justice system can exact a heavy toll on those who try to fight their DUI charges without legal guidance. If you or someone you know is facing a DUI charge – whether it’s their first or their fourth – reach out for a consultation today to discuss the details of your case in confidence.

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By George Vourvoulias

George is a founding member and managing member of Harmon, Smith & Vourvoulias L.L.C., a New Orleans law firm. George concentrates his practice in maritime personal injury, construction litigation, personal injury, workers' compensation, medical malpractice, and DUI defense. George Vourvoulias's Google+ Profile