DWI FAQ's

What is "Vanessa's Law"?

The legislature passed Vanessa's law to "recommend" specific punishments for offender's less than 18 years old who are involved in a crash-related moving violation or an alcohol/controlled substance-related violation. One of the specific punishment's recommended is the suspension of the juvenile offender's driver's license until he/she reaches the age of 18.

Can I be arrested for DUI/DWI if my BAC is less than .08?

The answer is "yes." Alcohol affects each individual differently. While your BAC may be lower than the legal limit, your ability to safely operate a vehicle may still be impaired.

I have been charged with a DWI, now what?

Do not make the mistake of thinking that DUI/DWI offenses are not important, serious charges. Minnesota's Legislature has changed the DUI/DWI laws so that the penalties associated with DUI/DWI convictions are much greater. Depending on whether you have prior convictions for DUI/DWI offenses, common penalties for a DUI/DWI conviction now include:

  • Lengthy periods of probation;.
  • Jail time;.
  • Higher fines and court costs;.
  • Mandatory chemical dependency evaluations;.
  • Suspension, revocation, or cancellation of your driver's license;.
  • Hundreds of dollars in fees to get you driver's license reinstated;.
  • Revocation of your license plates and fees to get new license plates;.
  • Forfeiture of your motor vehicle;.
  • Several court appearances resulting in lost time from work; and.
  • The possibility of prison time.

If you have been charged with a DUI/DWI offense, please seek immediate advice from an experienced criminal defense attorney. Our experienced criminal defense attorneys have handled thousands of DUI/DWI cases. We obtain the best possible results for our clients. We will answer your questions, examine the State's evidence, explain your options in a clear, concise, and understandable manner, and provide excellent representation of your interests.

Please contact Pennington, Lies, Cherne, & Gaarder, PLLC to schedule your consultation with one of our attorneys.

What is the legal BAC limit in the state of Minnesota?

Any person with a BAC of .08 or more can be arrested for DUI/DWI. You don't have to consume a number of drinks to exceed the legal limit. There are many factors that contribute to your BAC and the effects the alcohol has on your ability to pay attention, react, maintain coordination, and make sound judgments.

Should I take a blood, breath, or urine test if I have been arrested for a DUI/DWI offense?

The answer is almost always "yes." Failure to provide a blood, breath, or urine test if you have been arrested for a DUI/DWI offense is a crime in the State of Minnesota. You can be charged with a gross misdemeanor for refusing to test. A conviction for refusal to test may result in a revocation of your driver's license for a year.

How do I get my MN driver's license reinstated?

Once your license has been suspended or revoked, the State of Minnesota has the right not to reinstate your license. Generally, though, you may have your license reinstated or obtain a limited license so you can get to and from work by completing the following steps with the Department of Public Safety: (1) Complete the application for a new driver's license, (2) complete a written test, and (3) pay the reinstatement fee of $680 (which is subject to periodic changes).

The written test covers information in Chapters 7 and 8 of the Minnesota Driver's Manual.