first offense owi charges

5 Reasons Your OWI Might Bring Tougher Charges

These situations could bring enhanced OWI charges in Wisconsin

Like most states, Wisconsin has strict penalties for OWI offenses. Even for a first OWI offense, you face serious consequences. The base penalties do not necessarily tell the whole story; some factors can boost your penalty even higher.

1. You Are Under 21

The legal age for drinking in Wisconsin is 21. If you are driving under the influence of alcohol and are an underage drinker, you will automatically have your license suspended for 90 days, even on your first offense.

2. Your Passenger Is Under 16

When you have a passenger under the age of 16, the charge is automatically a felony.

3. You Are a Commercial Driver

If you are operating under a commercial driver’s license, you will lose those privileges for a year, in addition to other penalties for your first OWI. From there, a second OWI can result in a lifetime suspension. Conviction on an OWI can result in you losing your livelihood entirely.

4. Your Blood Alcohol Content Is Extra High

Conviction for OWI is not merely a yes/no question. Your level of intoxication affects the penalties you face. If you are measured at between .17 and .19, the penalties are doubled for your OWI. At .20 the penalties are tripled, and anything at .25 or above gets them quadrupled. The more you drink, the stiffer the penalties you face.

5. You Work Around an Ignition Interlock Device (IID)

Once you are convicted of an OWI, you must use an IID that measures blood alcohol content before you can start the vehicle. If you have another OWI after refusing to install it or working around it, you will face fines and jail time above and beyond the usual penalties for a repeat OWI.

When you face OWI charges, you need someone in your corner to defend the charges and lessen the penalties you face. Contact Eisenberg Law Offices online or at 608-256-8356 to learn more.

EISENBERG LAW OFFICES, S.C.

308 East Washington Avenue Madison, WI 53703 (608) 256-8356

Madison WI Attorneys Since 1983


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The Information Contained In This Site Is Not Intended To Provide Legal Advice. Please Consult An Attorney To Discuss The Facts Of Your Individual Situation. Eisenberg Law Office, S.C. 308 E. Washington Ave., Madison, WI 53703 USA (608) 256-8356