Operating Under the Influence (“OUI”)

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Operating Under the Influence or Driving While Intoxicated in Massachusetts can be a misdemeanor; however, it can also be a felony. 


Police officers have been trained to look for certain signs that someone is under the influence and are very strict about arresting that individual. On that same note, there are certain procedures that a police officer must follow when arresting an individual for this crime, and failure to do so can result in the suppression of evidence. 


Operating Under the influence and Driving While intoxicated does not occur just when an individual has been drinking. Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 90 Section 24 provides that an individual may be under the influence of alcohol, drugs, depressants or stimulants, and even the vapor of glue. 


Penalties for this crime can result in imprisonment and loss of license. There are also a number of fees that the court has no discretion in and which can add up quickly. 


In addition to dealing with the possibility of imprisonment, an individual also has to concern himself or herself with the Registry of Motor Vehicles. If an individual is charged with an OUI there are a number of preconviction license suspensions. This means that an individual could lose their right to operate a car even before they go to court. 


Specific Operating Under the Influence Offenses:

In addition to the pre-conviction license suspensions, there are also the ramifications of being charged with an OUI. There are several different criminal offenses related to OUIs:


  • 1st Offense OUI
  • 2nd Offense OUI
  • 3rd Offense OUI
  • 4th Offense OUI
  • 5th Offense or Greater OUI


The penalties for these offenses can be increased if an individual is operating his or her car while their license is suspended, if there is a child 14 years or younger in the vehicle or if the individual is a habitual traffic offender. 


If you have been charged with Operating Under the Influence, make sure you know your rights and get the representation that you deserve; contact BISSON LAW today!

1ST OFFENSE OPERATING UNDER THE INFLUENCE

An individual charged with Operating Under the Influence (“OUI”) faces the possibility of 2 ½ years in the House of Correction and possible fines/fees. The individual will also have his or her license suspended for 1 year; however, a hardship license may be obtained in 3 months for work or educational purposes and in 6 months for general purposes. 


24D Disposition for 1st Offense

If an individual is charged with an OUI for the first time, and the judge feels the individual would be a good candidate, the judge may allow for a 24D Disposition. This includes probation, a license suspension for 45 to 90 days and attendance and completion of a first offenders (24D) program, which lasts 16 weeks. There may also be fines/fees in addition to these requirements. 


Second Chance 24D

If an individual was charged with a first offense OUI ten or more years ago, he or she may be eligible to repeat the 24D program for the new offense. There may also be fines/fees in addition to the requirements of the 24D program. 


If you have been charged with Operating Under the Influence, make sure you know your rights and get the representation that you deserve; contact BISSON LAW today!

2ND OFFENSE OPERATING UNDER THE INFLUENCE

If an individual has been charged with a second OIU offense, he or she faces a mandatory 30 days imprisonment and a minimum of 60 days in the House of Correction; however, the sentence could be up to 2 ½ years. There is also a requirement that an ignition interlock device be placed on any vehicle that the individual drives (he or she may not operate a commercial vehicle or motorcycle during this time). Further, the individual will have his or her license suspended for 2 years and may receive multiple fines/fees.

 

A hardship license for work or education may be applied for after one year. If the individual is requesting a general hardship license it will be 1½ years.

 

If you have been charged with a 2nd offense of Operating Under the Influence, make sure you know your rights and get the representation that you deserve; contact BISSON LAW today!

3RD OFFENSE OPERATING UNDER THE INFLUENCE

If an individual has been charged with a 3rd offense OUI, he or she faces a mandatory 150 days imprisonment and a minimum of 6 months in the House of Correction; however, the sentence could be anywhere up to 2 ½ years in the House of Correction or 2 ½ - 5 years in state prison. Further, there may be additional fines/fees. There is also a requirement that an ignition interlock device be placed on any vehicle that the individual drives (he or she may not operate a commercial vehicle or motorcycle during this time). Further, the individual will have his or her license suspended for 8 years. A 3rd OUI offense is considered a felony. 


A hardship license for work or education may be applied for after 2 years and after 4 years for a general hardship. 


If you have been charged with a 3rd offense of Operating Under the Influence, make sure you know your rights and get the representation that you deserve; contact BISSON LAW today!

4TH OFFENSE OPERATING UNDER THE INFLUENCE

If an individual has been charged with a 4th offense OUI, he or she faces a mandatory 1-year imprisonment and a minimum 2 years in the House of Correction; however, the sentence could be anywhere up to 2 ½ years in the House of Correction or 2 ½ - 5 years in state prison. Further, there may be additional fines/fees. There is also a requirement that an ignition interlock device be placed on any vehicle that the individual drives (he or she may not operate a commercial vehicle or motorcycle during this time). Further, the individual will have his or her license suspended for 10 years. A 4th OUI offense is considered a felony.

 

A hardship license for work or education may be applied for after 5 years and after 8 years for a general hardship. 


If you have been charged with a 4th offense of Operating Under the Influence, make sure you know your rights and get the representation that you deserve; contact BISSON LAW today!

5TH OFFENSE OPERATING UNDER THE INFLUENCE

If an individual has been charged with a 5th offense OUI, he or she faces a mandatory 2-year imprisonment and a minimum 2 ½ years in the House of Correction or 2 ½ - 5 years in state prison. Further, there may be additional fines/fees. In this instance, an individual would lose his license for life. 


A hardship license is not available. 


If you have been charged with a 5th offense of Operating Under the Influence, make sure you know your rights and get the representation that you deserve; contact BISSON LAW today!