Go to navigation Go to content

Rhode Island DUI Law

It is illegal in Rhode Island to operate a vehicle while under the influence of any intoxicating drug or liquor. The legal standard for DUI is a blood alcohol level of .08 or greater.

Penalties

First Offense BAC .08 - .10:

If your BAC is between .08 - .10 on the first conviction, you will be fined $100 - $300, required to perform 10 – 60 hours of community service, and/or imprisoned for up to one year. In addition, the court will suspend your license for 30 – 180 days and require that you attend a special course on driving while intoxicated.

First Offense BAC .10 - .15:

If your BAC is between .10 - .15 on the first conviction, you will be fined $100 - $400, required to perform 10 – 60 hours of community service, and/or imprisoned for up to a year. In addition, the court will suspend your license for a period of 3 – 12 months and require that you attend a special course on driving while intoxicated.

First Offense BAC .15+:

If your BAC was greater than .15 on your first conviction, you will be fined $500, required to perform 20 – 60 hours of community service, and/or imprisoned for up to a year. In addition, the court will suspend your license for a period of 3 – 18 months and require that you attend a special course on driving while intoxicated.

Second Offense BAC .08 - .15:

If your BAC is between .08 - .15 on your second offense in a five year period, you will be fined $400, your license will be suspended for 1 – 2 years, and you will serve at 10 days – 1 year in jail. At the court’s discretion, you may not be able to operate a motor vehicle that is not equipped with an ignition interlock device for at least a year after you get your license back.

Second Offense BAC .15+:

If your BAC was greater than .15 on your second offense in a five year period, you will be fined at least $1,000, your license will be suspended for 2 years, and you will go to jail for a minimum of 6 months.

Third Offense BAC .08 - .15:

If your BAC is .08 - .15 on your third offense in a five year period you will be fined $400, imprisoned for 1 – 3 years, and have your license suspended for 2 – 3 years. At the court’s discretion, you may not be able to operate a vehicle without an ignition interlock device for a period of 2 years after you get your license back.

Third Offense BAC .15+:

If your BAC was greater than .15 on your third conviction, you will be fined at $1,000 - $3,000, imprisoned for 3 – 5 years, and your license will be suspended for 3 years.

Vehicle Forfeiture Statute

At the court’s discretion, any person convicted of a third or subsequent DUI in a five year period may have their vehicle seized by the State and sold at auction, with the proceeds being transferred to a general fund.

Special Course on Driving While Intoxicated

This course is administered by the state and requires a tuition fee of $25 - $175.

Refusal to Submit to Breath Test

If you are pulled over be a police officer and he has reason to believe that you were driving under the influence of alcohol, he may request that you submit to a breath test. These tests are not used in court proceedings, which require the use of a chemical test administered at the police station. If, however, you refuse to submit to the preliminary test, you may be fined $75.

Refusal to Submit to Chemical Test

If, after being arrested, you refuse to submit to chemical testing of your blood, breath, or urine you will be fined $200 - $500, ordered to perform 10 – 60 hours of community service, and your license will be suspended for 6 – 12 months.

Under 21

If you are under 21 years of age and driving with a BAC of .02 or greater you may loss your license, face a fine of at least $150, and be required to perform up to 100 hours of community service.