DWI Laws in Missouri

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In Missouri, 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 Missouri 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 Missouri and other details about Missouri DWI law.

In Missouri, 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 Missouri, broken out by whether this is your first, second, or third offense:

1st offense

2nd offense

3rd offense

1 year license revocation

1 year license revocation; ignition interlock device must be installed

1 year license revocation; ignition interlock device must be installed

 

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

In Missouri, law enforcement officers are supposed to measure your BAC at the time 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 Missouri?

In Missouri, the maximum blood alcohol content (BAC) for drivers who are under 21 (considered minors under some drinking and driving laws) is .02%. Penalties include suspension of license 90 days (first offense); 1 year (any subsequent offense).

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

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

1st offense

2nd offense

3rd offense

No required minimum jail term

No required minimum jail term

No required minimum jail term

 

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

In Missouri, prior DWI convictions stay on your record (and can be counted against you when you are being sentenced for another DUI/DWI offense) for 5 years for a first offense; good for second and subsequent offenses.

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

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 Missouri?

Within the discretion of the court, an ignition interlock device can be required for a first offense.

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

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 Missouri DWI attorneys in your area.

Last updated on 09/01/2010.

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