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A person who is convicted of DUI in Miami, Florida for the third time after two other prior convictions faces serious penalties for the third conviction. If the third DUI occurred within 10 years of any prior conviction, then it can be charged as a third-degree felony. Most first- or second-time DUI offenses are considered misdemeanors.
Penalties for a third DUI (driving under the influence, or drunk driving) conviction in Florida often include jail, heavy fines, suspension of driver's license, and vehicle impound. Additional penalties include probation, community service, DUI school, alcohol and/or drug evaluation and treatment, and the requirement to install and pay for an ignition interlock device (IID) when a driver's license is reissued after a 10-year mandatory suspension, with no chance for a "hardship" license for two years.
If you were arrested for a third DUI charge under § 316.193(1) of the Florida Statutes, your mobility and your freedom may both be in jeopardy. Not only may you lose your driving privileges for quite a long time, you may be ordered to prison for up to five years.
Under Florida law, penalties for a third DUI are more severe if the person facing charges had their last DUI within a 10-year period.
Find an Attorney for Third DUI in Miami
Anyone arrested for a third DUI in South Miami or anywhere in Miami-Dade County should seek the advice of a qualified criminal defense attorney who focuses on DUI cases. The criminal penalties and civil consequences you may face for a third drunk driving conviction are serious, so you should counter with effective legal representation.
Hubbs Law Firm helps DUI clients who live in Miami and throughout Miami-Dade County, including clients facing a third DUI charge. We have the experience and insight to assist you in dealing with both the criminal and civil aspects of your DUI case.
E.J. Hubbs is Board Certified in Criminal Trial Law by the Florida Bar. Certification signifies an assurance of professional and ethical practices and is the highest level of evaluation by the Florida Bar of competency and experience within an area of law.
As an experienced Miami DUI defense attorney and former prosecutor, E.J. Hubbs knows the nuances of Florida's drunk driving laws. He uses that knowledge to challenge his clients' DUI charges. Hubbs Law Firm may be able to find any number of problems with a DUI arrest, such as the way in which DUI tests were conducted or the equipment used for testing. Any problematic issues will be presented in court, which may result in a reduction or dismissal of a third DUI charge.
Florida requires an automatic driver's license suspension just 10 days after a third DUI arrest. Hubbs Law Firm assists its clients in requesting a formal review hearing before the Florida Board of Administrative Reviews (BAR). At the hearing, we can try to obtain a temporary driving permit while fighting to invalidate the administrative suspension.
Hubbs Law Firm serves DUI clients throughout Miami-Dade County, including Miami, Miami Beach, Coral Gables, South Miami, Doral, Pinecrest, Homestead, Hialeah and Miami Gardens, as well as anywhere else in the county.
Contact us at (305) 570-4802 today to schedule a time to discuss your DUI charge during a free, no-obligation consultation with our attorney.
Third-Time DUI Charges in Florida
In Florida, a third-time DUI offense without aggravating circumstances is charged as a first-degree misdemeanor if the most recent DUI conviction was more than 10 years in the past.
If a third alleged DUI incident occurred within 10 years of any prior DUI conviction, then the charge is elevated to a third-degree felony, with the potential for prison time instead of jail.
A third DUI resulting in serious bodily injury or death may further enhance the charge and the potential penalties.
Note: A person may be charged and convicted of DUI without drinking any alcohol if the police suspect that the driver is impaired by drugs or a controlled substance and a drug or controlled substance is detected in subsequent a blood test.
Elements That Must Be Proved to Obtain a Third DUI Conviction
For the State of Florida to convict a person of a third DUI under Florida Statutes, § 316.193(1), a judge or jury must find beyond a reasonable doubt that a person:
- Drove or was in actual physical control of a vehicle; and
- While driving or in actual physical control of the vehicle, had a BAC of 0.08 or more grams of alcohol per 100 milliliters of blood or 210 liters of breath, or was under the influence of alcoholic beverages, a chemical substance, or a controlled substance to the extent that his or her normal faculties were impaired; and
- Was previously convicted of DUI two times.
Possible Criminal & Civil Penalties for a Third DUI Conviction in Florida
The law presumes that a third DUI within 10 years of a second DUI conviction may indicate a significant public safety concern, so punishments for a third DUI within 10 years of the most recent DUI conviction are more severe than those for a third DUI that occurred more than 10 years after a second DUI conviction.
Under § 316.193(2)(b)(2) of the Florida Statutes, a third DUI within 10 years of the most recent DUI offense may be charged as a third-degree felony.
Under such circumstances, it is important to seek the advice of an experienced criminal defense attorney before the prosecutor files a charge.
Third DUI Conviction outside 10 Years of Most Recent Conviction
The Florida Statutes list the criminal penalties that are to be imposed for a conviction on a third DUI charge more than 10 years after the most recent previous DUI charge, which is a first-degree misdemeanor.
Punishments include the following:
- Jail sentence of up to 12 months
- A fine of $2,000 to $5,000
- Mandatory placement and payment for at least two years of an approved ignition interlock device (IID) on all vehicles owned by or leased by a convicted person, when a person qualifies for a permanent or restricted license
Additional costs include the following:
- Probation (with an optional requirement of community service)
- Driver's license suspension (administrative suspension differs from court suspension)
- Vehicle immobilization or impound
- DUI School
- Additional fees and court costs
Third DUI Conviction within 10 Years of Most Recent Conviction
If a third DUI conviction occurs within a period of 10 years of any prior DUI conviction, then the offense can be charged as a third-degree felony.
Penalties are enhanced and many of the additional requirements and penalties listed immediately above are mandatory:
- Minimum mandatory jail sentence of 30 days and a maximum sentence of up to 364 days for a first-degree misdemeanor or up to five years in prison for a third-degree felony
- A fine of up to $5,000 for a third-degree felony
- Vehicle impound or immobilization
- Driver's license revocation for 10 years (no possible reinstatement for two years)
- Ignition interlock device (IID)
- Probation (mandatory)
- Community service
- Advanced DUI school
- Alcohol and /or drug evaluation and treatment
- Additional fees and court costs
A third DUI will also result in higher auto insurance rates and usually requires a driver to obtain expensive FR 44 insurance.
Note: A third-time DUI offender convicted of DUI with serious bodily injury or death will face even greater penalties than listed above.
Administrative Driver's License Suspension in a DUI Case
No matter what the court eventually orders, an administrative driver's license suspension is mandated in any Florida DUI case. A temporary driving permit may be available after a DUI arrest, but a person accused of DUI has only 10 days to request a formal review hearing before the Florida Board of Administrative Reviews (BAR), a division of the state's DHSMV.
A qualified attorney who represents a person accused of a third DUI and files a request for a formal review hearing in time may be able to secure a temporary driving permit for a client while fighting to invalidate the administrative suspension.
If you meet with an experienced Miami DUI defense attorney, you can learn the answers to many of your questions about the criminal and civil aspects of your case. A qualified attorney can help you decide whether to request a formal hearing or a review of eligibility for immediate reinstatement of your driver's license.
Contact Hubbs Law Firm Today
If you were charged with DUI for the third time in Miami-Dade County, you should seek professional legal advice about your case as soon as possible. Your mobility and your freedom depend on you taking swift action.
At Hubbs Law Firm, we offer a free initial consultation for potential DUI clients. We know the DUI laws and when we discuss your case, we can explain the charges, as well as the possible penalties that may be imposed and any possible defenses that may be pursued due to the unique circumstances of your case.
Hubbs Law Firm may be able to find mistakes made by the arresting officer during the traffic stop, problems with the way alcohol or drug tests that were conducted, or other procedural errors that may result in a reduction or dismissal of charges. Our goal in every DUI case is to avoid a conviction. We are always prepared to confront charges of DUI (also known as DWI or OWI in other states) at trial if necessary.
We represent clients from Miami, Miami Beach, Hialeah, Miami Gardens, Miami Springs, South Miami, Homestead, Doral, Pinecrest, and anywhere else in Miami-Dade County.
Call Hubbs Law Firm today at (305) 570-4802 to schedule an appointment to discuss your DUI case.
- Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles — The DHSMV website contains information about laws related to the administrative suspension of a driver's license due to a DUI, with detailed information about how to reinstate a Florida driver's license after an administrative suspension for a third DUI.
- Miami-Dade County Circuit Court — Find information on the county website about its criminal courts, including the DUI court. The criminal court for most DUI cases in Miami-Dade County is located at:
- Richard E. Gerstein Justice Building
1351 N.W. 12th St.
Miami, FL 33125
- Richard E. Gerstein Justice Building
- Special Supervision Services (SSS) Program — Offered by the non-profit Florida Safety Council, SSS is a voluntary program for persons with a five-year, 10-year or permanent driver's license revocation to demonstrate eligibility for “Business Purposes Only” or "Employment Purposes Only" hardship licenses.
Attorneys E.J. & Erika Hubbs
As professional Miami criminal defense attorneys, we take every case personally give every client the deliberate care it deserves. Our clients become part of our family and we fight relentlessly for their rights. Read more about us to find out how we can help you.
"This case has been a rollercoaster of emotions, but Mr. Hubbs’ consistency throughout our case had us feeling at ease. A bit over a year later he got us the results we wanted and hoped for. Don’t think twice, seek his legal assistance, you will"Melissa Fernandez
Personal and ResponsiveMark Miller
"Erika was an absolute gem, she answered all our questions, was accommodating and let us know she needed to research my wife’s visa before telling us whether she would take our case. After doing research, she thankfully took our case. She made the pro"