DWI Laws in Minnesota

Learn the key facts about DWI in Minnesota.

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In Minnesota, you can get a DWI if you drive with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08% or higher, regardless of whether your driving ability was actually impaired. And the law in Minnesota says that if you are driving a vehicle, you have given consent to submit to a chemical test for the purpose of determining the amount of alcohol in your blood. Here are some details on the consequences of refusing to take a chemical test in Minnesota and other details about Minnesota DWI law.

In Minnesota, what are the consequences of refusing to take a chemical test (usually a breathalyzer or blood test) when suspected of DWI?

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

1st offense

2nd offense

3rd offense

1 year revocation of license

1 year revocation of license

1 year revocation of license

 

In Minnesota, when do police have to measure your blood alcohol content (BAC)?

In Minnesota, law enforcement officers are supposed to measure your BAC within two hours of driving. However, prosecutors may be able to prove your culpability for DWI even if your BAC is taken later than this time.

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

In Minnesota, the maximum blood alcohol content (BAC) for drivers who are under 21 (considered minors under some drinking and driving laws) is 0%. Minnesota is a "zero tolerance" state.

What are the minimum jail times for a DWI in Minnesota?

Here are the minimum jail times for a DWI in Minnesota, broken out by whether this is your first, second, or third offense:

1st offense

2nd offense

3rd offense

No minimum required jail term

30 days jail

90 days jail

 

How long will prior DWI convictions remain relevant for sentencing purposes in Minnesota?

In Minnesota, prior DWI convictions stay on your record (and can be counted against you when you are being sentenced for another DUI/DWI offense) for 10 years.

Can a DWI be “pleaded down” to a "wet reckless" in Minnesota?

A defendant might receive a "wet reckless," or a conviction of reckless driving involving alcohol, as a result of a plea bargain in which a charge of drunk driving is reduced to a case of reckless driving. There is no statutory provision on whether a wet reckless plea bargain will be accepted in your state, but it's possible a lawyer may be able to create a plea bargain for you.

If you are interested in contacting a lawyer, you can find a DWI lawyer in your area in Nolo's Lawyer Directory.

Are ignition interlock devices (IIDs) required for convicted DWI offenders in Minnesota?

No. However, the court may allow drivers whose license have been revoked because of a DUI to drive during the period of revocation if they install an ignition device..

Where can I get more information about DWI laws in Minnesota?

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

Last updated on 09/01/2010.

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