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Drunk driving charges and vehicle impoundment

On Behalf of | May 12, 2022 | DUI

From time behind bars to the loss of your driver’s license and financial consequences, drunk driving charges could turn your life on end. If you currently face these allegations, it is crucial to look at other ways in which the charges might impact you. For example, the court could order the impoundment of your vehicle, which could disrupt various facets of your life.

It is important to go over relevant laws regarding vehicle impoundment and factors that can affect the duration of impoundment.

Will the court impound your vehicle over a DUI?

According to the Florida Legislature, courts generally order the impoundment of vehicles belonging to those convicted of DUI, even for a first offense. However, there are certain situations in which courts decide to dismiss an order of impoundment. For example, if charged with driving drunk and your family does not have any other form of transportation, or you own vehicles that are solely operated by your employees, the court could decide not to impound these vehicles.

Additionally, if a defendant proves that an approved ignition interlock device was set up in their vehicle, the court could decide to dismiss an impoundment order.

How long are vehicles impounded after a DUI conviction?

For a first conviction, courts often impound vehicles for 10 days. A second drunk driving conviction within a five-year period could lead to 30 days of vehicle impoundment, and a third conviction within a ten-year period could result in 90 days of impoundment.

It is important to note that impoundment cannot take place during a defendant’s incarceration. Also, if you own an impounded vehicle, you will have to cover costs associated with impoundment. Make sure you prepare for your drunk driving case and the potential penalties you face.

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