Second DUI Conviction in Florida

Unbeknownst to most people, driving under the influence charges accumulate and the penalties for any prior DUI convictions may affect the severity of a subsequent conviction.

Specific charges for a second DUI will depend on whether the most recent charges fall within the “lookback period” or the “washout period.” A “lookback” or “wash out” period refers to the predetermined length of time for which an older DUI may be counted against an alleged offender.

When a second drunk driving charge falls within the “lookback” period, an alleged offender may face enhanced penalties.

Attorney for Second DUI Arrest in Pensacola, FL

If you or someone you know has been arrested for drunk driving in the Florida Panhandle, specifically in Escambia County or Santa Rosa, County, FL, contact the experienced DUI defense attorneys at The Law Office of James M. Burns.

Attorney James M. Burns has more than two decades of practice in both Florida and Alabama and has fought for the rights of clients charged with driving under the influence for years.

With an office located at , our firm takes cases in Perdido Key, Fort Walton Beach, Milton, and Navarre, Florida.

Call (850) 457-6002 now to schedule a free, no obligations, consultation with our office.


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Escambia County, Second DUI Information Center


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Second DUI Offense in Florida

Florida Statute § 316.193 makes it a crime to operate a motor vehicle under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Operating a motor vehicle has been defined as exercising actual physical control over a vehicle.

Additionally, "under the influence" or "intoxicated" has been defined as having a blood alcohol content (BAC) level of at least 0.08. The Florida Statute has also included consumption of alcohol or a controlled substance to the extent that an individual’s normal faculties are impaired.

In this context, normal faculties include the ability to talk, see, hear, walk, judge distances, act in emergencies, make judgments, drive an automobile, and in general, perform the normal mental and physical acts of everyday life.


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Florida “Lookback” Period

In Florida, being charged with multiple subsequent DUI convictions can impact the criminal consequences of a subsequent DUI conviction. Thus, the penalties for a third DUI conviction may be different than the penalties for a first time DUI conviction.

Florida law utilizes what is called a “lookback” period to determine how the length of time between DUI convictions can impact the criminal penalties for a subsequent conviction.

Florida Statute 316.193(6)(b) establishes that five years is the “lookback” period or washout period for second DUI offenses. Thus, being convicted of a second DUI within five years of receiving the first may subject the accused to enhanced penalties.


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Second DUI Penalties in Pensacola, FL

A second drunk driving conviction that occurs more than five years after the first DUI conviction will generally be treated as if it was a first-time DUI.  Second DUI convictions that are outside the “lookback” period will incur additional penalties.

Second time DUI charges are punishable by up to nine months in jail and up to $1,000 fines. In addition to fines and jail time, an offender could be required to complete DUI School and a minimum of 50 hours of community service.

When a second DUI falls within the “lookback” period, the penalties are much harsher. A second time DUI offense within five years of the first is charged as a first-degree misdemeanor.

The penalties are as follows:

  • Jail Time –an offender may serve up to nine (9) months in jail and must serve at least 48 hours of consecutive jail time and a minimum of ten (10) days.
  • Florida Driver’s License Revocation –an offender's driver’s license may be suspended for at least five (5) years.
  • Vehicle Impoundment –an offender’s vehicle will be impounded for thirty (30) days.
  • Ignition Interlock Device – the court will impose an IID for at least twelve (12) months after the offender serves jail time.
  • Fines – an offender may face fines of up to $2,000.
  • Probation – an offender may be required to serve up to twelve (12) months of probation.
  • Community Service – an offender may be required to participate in at least fifty (50) hours of community service.

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Additional Resources

Troop L | Florida Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (FHSMV) — The Florida Highway Patrol (FHP) regularly conducts roadside safety checkpoints at which they can also investigate possible DUI offenses when officers believe that drivers may be impaired. The FHP’s mission is to “promote a safe and secure Florida through professional law enforcement and traffic safety awareness.”

Annual Uniform Traffic Citation Report — Use this section of the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (FLHSMV) website to view annual uniform traffic citation statistics. The website allows you to choose one of the five most recent years and pick the counties and agencies you want to view in order to generate a report of DUI arrests in that jurisdiction. You can also specify violation classifications, groups, and codes.


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Find an Experienced DUI Defense Attorney in Escambia County, FL

Pensacola Criminal defense attorney James M. Burns has two decades of experience practicing law in multiple states and has fought for the rights of criminal defendants for years.

[$firm]] takes cases throughout the Florida Panhandle in areas like Perdido Key, Milton, Pace, Navarre, and Fort Walton Beach, Florida.

Call (850) 457-6002 now to schedule a free consultation and learn more about our office.

This article was last updated on November 31, 2017.