Felony vs. Misdemeanor DUI Charges

Is a DUI a Felony?

"Is a DUI a Felony?" is one of the most frequently asked questions about drunk driving charges. While the answer to whether or not your DUI is a misdemeanor or a felony will depend on many factors, including your state's specific laws, there are certain aspects about a case that might suggest the driver will face a felony DUI charge such as:

  • Does the driver have prior convictions?
  • Was someone killed or seriously injured in the accident?.

All states have a blood alcohol content (BAC) limit of 0.08 percent; however, DUI penalties vary by state and the circumstances of a DUI arrest could influence the charge.

Were you arrested for driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol? One of our sponsoring DUI attorneys can review your case and explain in detail whether you might be facing a felony DUI or a misdemeanor if you are convicted.

Fill out the below form for a free case evaluation:

Classifying a DUI Charge

Whether or not a drunk driving charge will be classified as a felony depend on a number of factors.

  • Were other passengers in the vehicle?
  • What sort of damage was done in the collision?
  • What are the laws in your state?

All of these questions and more will be asked and used in determining whether you are facing misdemeanor DUI charges or something more serious like DUI manslaughter.

Often times, this charge is referred to as reckless homicide or vehicular homicide if the accident results in the death of another driver or passenger.

Felony DUI charges and penalties can be extreme and can result in jail time.

Some states institute a felony classification for multiple DUI offenses. In the state of New York, for example, a second DUI conviction within 10 years is classified as a Class E felony. The same classification is made in Wyoming, among others.

Georgia and Texas also classify multiple DUI offenses as felonies, but only upon the fourth conviction.

Other states vary, and so it can be a good idea to examine the latest DUI laws in your state.

Felony and Misdemeanor DUI Sentencing

Generally speaking, the major difference between a misdemeanor and a felony has to do with the penalties involved. A misdemeanor requiring incarceration will be served at the county jail, while a felony must be served at the state penitentiary.

Furthermore, felonies carry additional consequences.

Many government agencies, companies that work with children, or private companies that deal with classified information have the right to access your criminal record for examination during a job hiring process.

Many companies also have policies that preclude hiring convicted felons, which includes felony DUI if convicted.

For more information on DUI laws and charges, connect with an attorney in your area by filing out the free DUI case evaluation form or by calling 877-349-1311. Arrange a free consultation with a local DUI lawyer today.

PAID ATTORNEY ADVERTISEMENT: THIS WEB SITE IS A GROUP ADVERTISEMENT AND THE PARTICIPATING ATTORNEYS ARE INCLUDED BECAUSE THEY PAY AN ADVERTISING FEE. It is not a lawyer referral service or prepaid legal services plan. Total DUI is not a law firm.  Your request for contact will be forwarded to the local lawyer who has paid to advertise in the ZIP code you provide. Total DUI does not endorse or recommend any lawyer or law firm who participates in the network nor does it analyze a person's legal situation when determining which participating lawyers receive a person's inquiry. It does not make any representation and has not made any judgement as to the qualifications, expertise or credentials of any participating lawyer. The information contained herein is not legal advice. No representation is made that the quality of the legal services to be performed is greater than the quality of legal services performed by other lawyers. Any information you submit to Total DUI does not create an attorney-client relationship and may not be protected by attorney-client privilege. Do not use the form to submit confidential, time-sensitive, or privileged information. All photos are of models and do not depict clients. All case evaluations are performed by participating attorneys. To see the attorney in your area who is responsible for this advertisement, please click here or call 866-200-8052.

FLORIDA ONLY: Total DUI is considered a lawyer referral service in the state of Florida under the Florida Rules of Professional Conduct. By all other standards, Total DUI is a group advertisement and not a lawyer referral service.

If you live in Mississippi, Missouri, New York or Wyoming, please click here for additional information.