Q: My husband has a suspended license. He hasn’t had a license in 22 years since his first DUI because he never got it back. He just received a DUI and refused breathalyzer. Will he get house arrest, or will he get jail? We need him at home to pay the bills.
A: Since ten years have passed since his first DUI, this will count as a 1st DUI. The statute calls for 72 hours to 6 months of incarceration because this is a “refusal” and a $1000 to $5000 fine. His driver’s license will be suspended for 1 year on the DUI. He will likely be cited with section 1543 b of the Motor Vehicle Code for driving under a DUI suspended license. This will result in another license suspension of at least one year. Since he has no license, this means that he will be unable to have driving privileges for a period of at least 2 years after he applies. He is not going to jail and will likely get 3 nights in DUI Hotel or house arrest for 6 to 12 months, in addition to fines, costs, a Drug and Alcohol assessment and classes. The penalties for driving under a 1543 (b) suspended license are 60 days in jail and a $500 fine for the first offense. I would invest in an attorney for the Preliminary Hearing and try to get the 1543 (b) dropped to a lower offense so he avoids the additional year of suspension. Riding a DUI bicycle for one year is better than two.