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Understanding the consequences of a Minnesota DWI conviction

On Behalf of | Sep 8, 2023 | DUI

Anyone who drives in Minnesota should be aware of the consequences of a DUI conviction. The state takes driving under the influence offenses very seriously, and conviction for such a crime could cause your life to change significantly. A DWI conviction won’t only lead to legal consequences but can also mean changes in your personal and professional life. You could lose your job and become ostracized by loved ones after such a serious driving offense.  

What can happen if you’re convicted of DWI? 

In Minnesota, you’re considered to be driving while intoxicated if your blood alcohol level is 0.08 or higher. But this doesn’t mean the police can’t arrest you with a lower BAC if they use other methods to determine you may be driving unsafely. A first DWI conviction can mean jail time and losing your driver’s license for up to 30 days. With each conviction, the penalties get more serious. 

Around one-third of all traffic-related deaths in Minnesota occur in accidents related to DWI. The state is attempting to reduce the number of deaths by utilizing ignition interlock to prevent drivers from getting on the road after they have been drinking. If you’ve previously had a conviction for driving while intoxicated, you may need to have one of these devices installed in your car before you’re legally allowed to drive again.  

How ignition interlock works 

The ignition interlock system goes under the vehicle’s dashboard and connects to the starter. If you have one of these devices installed on your car, you must blow into the device with a BAC reading below 0.02 before your car starts. The court normally orders these devices for first-time convictions of those with a BAC double the legal limit and second-time offenders. The period of time for which you must use the device depends on the details of your conviction. Once you complete the time ordered by the court, you may gain back your full driving privileges.  

When you’re accused of driving while intoxicated in the state of Minnesota, you may understandably be worried about your future. But it’s important to remember that you have the right to defend yourself against the charges in court. Creating the right defense strategy depends on the specifics of the accusation, including any evidence collected on the scene or after your arrest. Most importantly, remember that you don’t have to face your charges alone, and by seeking legal help, you can make the right decisions based on your case. 


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