Mississippi DUI arrests trigger what is known as the 10-day rule for driver’s license issues. In Mississippi, if you either refused to submit to a breath, blood or urine test or you gave a test where the results were .08 or higher, the state will attempt to suspend your license or privilege to drive for 90 days to one year. You have 10 days to appeal that to the Department of Motor Vehicles. If you’ve been arrested in Mississippi you should contact an experienced attorney right away.
Mississippi DUI or drunk driving arrests trigger two separate cases: the court case, where a DUI conviction can result in fines, jail time, mandatory alcohol education programs, and more; and the Department of Motor Vehicles case, where the DMV is trying to take away the driver’s license of anyone arrested for drunk driving.
Mississippi DUI law makes it illegal to operate a vehicle while under the influence of alcohol, or while having a blood-alcohol level of .08% or more. For persons under 21, having a blood alcohol level of .02% or more will run afoul of Mississippi drinking and driving laws. For those driving commercial vehicles, the legal limit is .04%.
Mississippi drunk driving arrests trigger administrative license revocations, meaning that when someone is arrested in Mississippi and has a blood alcohol content of .08% or greater, their driver’s license will be taken away on the spot, and can only be saved by making a timely request of the Mississippi DMV.
Mississippi DUI arrests trigger what is known as the “10-day rule” for driver’s license issues. In Mississippi, if you either refused to submit to a breath, blood, or urine test, or you gave a test where the results were .08% or higher, the state will attempt to suspend your license or privilege to drive for 90 days to one year. This attempt to take away your right to drive will occur PRIOR to any criminal trial for DUI (in most cases) and will be automatically entered against you unless you file a test refusal petition within 10 calendar days after the mailing of a notice of letter of intent to suspend. Filing a test refusal petition does not postpone the suspension. The license you receive when there has been a refusal to take a state-administered test is valid for only forty-five (45) days from the date of the arrest. This license cannot be renewed or extended for any period of time. The test refusal hearing is an informal hearing. There will not be a jury. The decision will be announced at the administrative hearing to agree with the State to suspend your license or to return it to you. The hearing is needed to determine if you will be able to retain your driving privileges until the end of your DUI case or if you will lose the right to drive in Mississippi prior to your trial. In addition, this hearing offers a great opportunity to cross-examine the officer under oath about the facts of your case.
Criminal penalties in Mississippi drunk driving cases are quite harsh. There is a 5-year “washout” rule, meaning that prior DUI offenses cannot be used to trigger multiple-offender punishment after five years have elapsed. Third-offense DUI cases (within 5 years) are treated as felonies in Mississippi. Vehicle impoundment and forfeiture laws are also on the books for Mississippi DUI cases.
Zero Tolerance For Minors (Under 21)
First Offense (Under 21)
- Applies if you take the test and the results are between .02% -.08% Breath Alcohol Concentration
- Refusal, You Are Treated Like An Adult First Offense
- Fine $250
- Licensed Suspended Ninety (90) Days; Thirty (30) Days If No Breath Test Refusal May Be Non-Adjudicated At Court’s Discretion
Second Offense (Under 21)
- Fine Up To $500.00
- License Suspension One (1) Year (Reduction To Six (6)Months After Certified Alcohol/Drug Program)
Third Offense (Under 21)
- Fine Up To $1,000.00
- License Suspension For Two (2) Years Or Until Age 21 (Whichever Is Longer)
- Completion Of Certified Alcohol/Drug Program
Adult Offenses (Over 21)
First Offense (Over 21)
- Fine $250-$1,000 And Court Costs
- Forty-Eight (48) Hours In Jail
- License Suspension For One (1) Year
- MASEP & VIRP
Second Offense Within 5 Years (Over 21)
- Fine $600-$1,500 And Court Costs
- Five (5) Days To One (1) Year In Jail And Ten (10) Days To One (1) Year Of Community Service
- License Suspension For Two (2) Years
- Automobile Impounded Or Immobilized For Term Of Suspension
Third Offense Within 5 Years (Over 21)
- Fine $2,000-$5,000
- One (1) To Five (5) Years Incarceration At The State Penitentiary
- License Suspension For Five (5) Years
- Automobile Seizure And Sale With Proceeds To The State
- Felony Conviction – Loss Of Civil Rights – Loss Of Careers
DUI Resulting In Death Or Disfigurement
- Felony Conviction – Loss Of Civil Rights – Loss Of Careers
- Imprisonment In State Penitentiary For A Period Of Time of Not Less Than Five (5) Years And Not To Exceed Twenty Five (25) Years.
- Must Attend MASEP (Mississippi Alcohol Safety Education Program), $150 For Four (4) Three (3) Hour Sessions Over The Course Of One (1) Month.
- Proof Of Insurance. Sr-22 Filed For Three (3) Years.
- Proof Of Payment Of Fines And Completed Jail Time.
- Reinstatement Fee Of $100
(Available Only To First Time Offenders Who Take The Intoxilyzer Test.)
Only Available For Reasons Of:
- Maintain Employment
- Continue Education
- Obtain Necessary Medical Care
- License Will Be Suspended A Minimum Of 30 Days Before Hardship License Can Be Granted.
- 1st Offense – Suspension Of License For 90 Days
- 2nd Offense – Suspension Of License For 1 Year
- 3rd Offense – Suspension Of License For 1 Year
- Suspension Is In Addition To Any Suspension For A Conviction and Is Consecutive To Any Other Suspension Period
Mississippi Driver’s Rights Card
A prominent Mississippi DUI lawyer has created the Driver’s Rights Card, specifically tailored to Mississippi DUI law. It is recommended that all Mississippi drivers print this page and keep it with them, to be presented to a police officer in the event of a traffic stop for suspected drunk driving.