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What are the DWI Laws in Louisiana?

Posted on April 24, 2018

The DWI (driving while intoxicated) laws in the state of Louisiana could be a little confusing, especially when it comes to more than one offense and when adding horses and bicycles into the mix.

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In Louisiana, the DWI laws prohibits the operation of a motor vehicle, aircraft, watercraft, vessel or other means of transport while intoxicated. However, this law excludes non-motorized bikes or horses. You may not be able to get charged with a DWI for riding one of these, but you can still get a ticket for being drunk in public or a similar citation.

What qualifies as being intoxicated? In Louisiana, anyone under the age of 21 years old and has a BAC (blood alcohol concentration) of 0.02 percent or more will be cited for a DWI. Anyone over the age of 21 years old and has a BAC of 0.08 percent or more will get you a DWI citation. The BAC can either be checked through your breath using a breathalyzer or through your blood using a blood test.

Penalties

Being charged with a DWI is serious business. The first offense will get your license suspended for up to 1 year and it will cost a $100 fine to reinstate it. If it happens to be a criminal offense, you could face 6 months in jail and pay up to $1,000 in fines and court costs. A second DWI offense results in a 2-year suspension of your license and a fee of $200. If it is a criminal offense, you will get a mandatory of 48 hours in jail and then up to an additional 6 months of jail along with $1,000 worth in fines. On top of all of these, you will need to install an ignition interlock device, which measures your BAC before starting your car.