The law treats drunk driving in New York very seriously. If you get a DWI charge in New York, you can face several penalties, including a suspended driver’s license, fines, higher insurance rates, a criminal record and the installation of an interlock device on your vehicle. Any drunk driver with a blood alcohol content level of .08% or more gets a drunk driving charge of a DWI. New York has some of the strictest DWI laws in the U.S., with basic offenses carrying a one-year jail sentence, a fine of up to $1,000 and the installation of an interlock device for up to a year.

Under New York’s consent law, a driver has to take a chemical test if a police officer has reasonable grounds to think that they have committed a DWI. Drunk driving charges at the first court date typically include the suspension of the driver’s license if the driver has a blood alcohol content level of .08% or more while the actual criminal prosecution is pending.

This holds true even if the driver refuses a chemical test while the criminal prosecution from the Department of Motor Vehicles is pending. If the refusal to take the test gets confirmed at the hearing, the Department of Motor Vehicles will completely revoke the driver’s license for up to one year.

What can a driver do to fix the situation?

Additionally, once the driver’s license is revoked based on the refusal to take a chemical test, the driver will then pay drunk driving charges of up to $500. Once the license is officially revoked, the driver may be able to apply for a conditional license, which allows for driving in certain situations during the period of suspension.

You want to do your best to avoid hefty fines and getting your license suspended. However, if your BAC content level is .08% or higher, you risk that and possibly jail time. If you or a loved one has been recently hit with drunk driving charges, an attorney may be able to help.