In Nebraska, a driver can be convicted of driving under the influence, or DUI, for having a blood alcohol concentration or BAC level of .08 percent or greater. Such a BAC can result in the impairment of basic driving skills, such as braking, changing lanes, judging distance and steering. However, a driver can be convicted of DUI even if his or her BAC falls below the .08 percent threshold if an officer notices signs of impairment such as erratic driving.
Nebraska has a zero-tolerance law in effect for minors. Drivers under the age of 21 are considered minors and can face Nebraska DUI penalties with a BAC as low as .02 percent.
Nebraska has an implied consent law that states that anyone who operates a motor vehicle can be administered a chemical test by law enforcement officer if he or she is suspected of driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. By operating a motor vehicle, a driver has automatically given implied consent to submitting to a chemical test. If a driver refuses to submit to a chemical test, he or she will face the same penalties as someone who has been convicted of a DUI.
If a driver is convicted of driving under the influence of alcohol, the following Nebraska DUI penalties can be expected.
First Offense DUI Penalties
A first offense DUI is considered a Class W misdemeanor. Drivers can be expected to spend between seven and 60 days in jail and pay a fine of up to $500. Their driver’s license will be suspended for six months, and they will have to undergo an alcohol assessment and possible treatment. It is also possible that the driver will have to install a court-ordered ignition interlock device in his or her vehicle upon reinstatement of their license.
Second Offense DUI Penalties
If a second DUI conviction occurs within 12 years of a first DUI, it is considered a Class W misdemeanor. For a second offense DUI, a driver can expect to spend between 30 days and six months in jail and pay a $500 fine. The driver’s license suspension period for a second offense is one year. Additionally, an ignition interlock system will be required upon reinstatement of the person’s driver’s license.
Third Offense DUI Penalties
A third DUI offense will result in jail time of 90 days to 1 year, a fine of $1,000 and license suspension for 15 years unless probation is part of one’s sentence, in which case the revocation may range from two to 15 years, and the jail sentence may be reduced to 30 days.
Fourth Offense DUI Penalties
If a fourth DUI conviction occurs within 12 years of a second offense DUI, it is considered a Class III-A felony. A fourth DUI results in imprisonment ranging in duration from 90 days to five years depending on whether or not probation is a part of the sentence and a fine of up to $10,000. The person’s driver’s license will be suspended for 15 years if the conviction is within 12 years of a previous conviction. A court may also require alcohol assessment and treatment.