OUI/DUI Laws in Maine

Learn some of the key facts about OUI/DUI in Maine.

In Maine, you can get an OUI (operating under the influence), sometimes called a DUI (driving under the influence), if you drive or attempt to drive with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of.08% or higher, regardless of whether your driving ability was actually impaired. However, you can also get an OUI for driving or attempting to drive while impaired (even if just slightly) from alcohol, drugs, or a combination of the two. (Read about how marijuana legalization affects Maine's OUI laws.)

(Take a look at this BAC chart for an estimate of how many drinks it takes to reach the legal limit.)

And the law in Maine says that if you’re driving or attempting to drive a vehicle, you’ve given consent to submit to a chemical test for the purpose of determining the amount of alcohol or drugs in your blood. Here are some details on the consequences of refusing to take a chemical test in Maine and other details about Maine OUI/DUI law.

In Maine, what are the consequences of refusing to take a chemical test (usually a breathalyzer or blood test) when suspected of OUI/DUI?

Here are the consequences for not taking a breathalyzer or blood test in Maine, broken out by whether this is your first, second, or third offense:

1st offense

2nd offense

3rd offense

275-day license suspension, 4 days jail if convicted of an OUI

18-month license suspension

4-year license suspension

If you’re ultimately convicted of an OUI, your license will be suspended for a period of time in addition to the periods listed above. For instance, if you’re convicted of a second OUI and it’s also your second refusal, your license will be suspended for 54 months—18 months for the refusal, plus 36 months for the second OUI conviction.

In Maine, when do police have to measure your BAC?

In Maine, law enforcement officers are supposed to measure your BAC at the time of driving. However, prosecutors might be able to prove your culpability for OUI/DUI even if your BAC is taken later than this time.

What is the maximum BAC for drivers under 21 in Maine?

In Maine, the maximum BAC for drivers who are under 21 (considered minors under some drinking and driving laws) is 0%. Maine is a "zero tolerance" state. Penalties include a one-year suspension for a first offense and a two-year suspension for a second offense. The penalties increase to 18 (first offense) and 30 months (second offense) if the driver refused to submit to chemical testing.

What are the minimum jail times for an OUI/DUI in Maine?

Here are the minimum jail times for an OUI/DUI in Maine, broken out by whether this is your first, second, or third offense:

1st offense

2nd offense

3rd offense

No minimum jail term, 4 days if refused chemical testing

7 days jail, 12 days if refused chemical testing

30 days jail, 40 days if refused chemical testing

How long will prior OUI/DUI convictions remain relevant for sentencing purposes in Maine?

In Maine, prior OUI/DUI convictions stay on your record (and can be counted against you when you are being sentenced for another OUI/DUI offense) for ten years.

Can an OUI/DUI be “pleaded down” to a "wet reckless" in Maine?

In Maine, it’s possible for a motorist who’s accused of operating under the influence to “plea bargain” for a lesser charge. When such a plea bargain is for a reckless driving charge (called “driving to endanger” in Maine), it’s sometimes called a “wet reckless.”

(Read more about plea bargaining in Maine OUI cases and Maine's driving to endanger laws.)

Are ignition interlock devices (IIDs) required for convicted OUI/DUI offenders in Maine?

Ignition interlock devices (IIDs) aren’t required; however, if your license is suspended for an OUI conviction, you might be able to get your license reinstated sooner by installing an IID and agreeing to keep it on your car for a certain period of time.

For example, on a first OUI, you’re facing a 150-day suspension, but it’s possible to get your license back after 30 days if you agree to have an IID on your car for the remainder of the 150 days.

Where can I get more information about OUI/DUI laws in Maine?

Nolo's DUI/DWI topic has many helpful articles, including a Drunk Driving, DUI, and DWI FAQ. For more help after an OUI/DUI arrest, see Nolo's Lawyer Directory, where you can view in-depth profiles of Maine OUI/DUI attorneys in your area.

Last updated on 3/7/2016.

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