The Law Offices of Ossie Brown
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Driving after drinking is illegal in Louisiana

In a state largely known for the laissez les bon temps rouler way of life, it is easy to forget that there are strict laws covering many different things. One of these is drunk driving. Even though you can find drive-thru daiquiri shops and all over the place, you still shouldn't be tempted to drive in Louisiana if you've had any alcohol.

The laws here provide specific penalties for these convictions. Anyone who is out having a good time and then ends up in jail for drunk driving should be aware of the laws and their right to a defense. Here are some important points to know about driving drunk:

Implied consent

Louisiana does have an implied consent law. This means that if you are pulled over and asked to take a test to determine your blood alcohol concentration, you have to take the test or you can face penalties.

You have the right to refuse, but you need to think about the possible consequences. The primary penalty for refusing the test is having your driver's license suspended as an administrative penalty. If you have previous refusals, you can also face fines and incarceration.

Underage drunk driving

If you are too young to legally consume alcohol in Louisiana, you can face a criminal charge for underage drunk driving if you are stopped and found to be impaired while operating the vehicle. You face a 365-day driver's license suspension if you are found to be driving drunk when you are too young to purchase alcohol.

While it possible for some individuals to consume alcohol before they turn 21 in Louisiana, nobody under 21 can purchase it. Still, nobody who consumes alcohol should try to operate a vehicle, regardless of their age. Serious legal penalties and possible accidents can occur if people are driving while impaired.

Blood alcohol concentration limits

There are three limits that apply in Louisiana. The limit for underage drivers is .02 percent, for drivers over 21 it is .08 percent, and any BAC above .20 is considered an aggravated charge. For a regular conviction, you face a one-year driver's license suspension and a subsequent one comes with a two-year suspension.

For an aggravated charge, you will have a two-year suspension on the first conviction and three years on a second. On top of these penalties, you might also have to pay fines, take education courses and be sentenced to time in jail.

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The Law Offices of Ossie Brown
123 Saint Ferdinand Street
Baton Rouge, LA 70802

Phone: 225-424-7388
Fax: 225-334-7824
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