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Kentucky DUI Laws and Penalities

Ignition Interlock KY Office of Highway Safety Website, accessed 2016-08-11

  • Senate Bill 133, passed in 2015, requires repeat DUI offenders to blow into the ignition interlock device, which is installed on the vehicle. The vehicle will not start if the person’s blood-alcohol concentration exceeds a 0.02 level. 

  • First-time DUI offenders are not required to have the device installed unless there is an aggravating circumstance, such as speeding or driving drunk with a child in the car.


KRS Chapter 189A - Driving Under the Influence

Hardship Licenses

Ignition Interlock Devices and Licenses


KENTUCKY DUI LAW:

(Please check with your local law enforcement or the Transportation Cabinet for the most up to date information on Kentucky's Impaired Driving Laws.)

1.       What is DUI and what does it mean?

KRS 189A.010 REVISED 10/01/00 -- DWI/DUI is an abbreviation of driving while under the influence of intoxicants (alcohol) or of any substance or substances which impair driving ability. Other substances can include illegal drugs, prescription drugs, inhalants such as glue, gasoline, spray paint etc., and/or over the counter medications.  

2.       DUI Limits:

  • Adults = Operators can be convicted at levels lower than .08 based on other evidence which indicates impairment.
  • Under-21 = 0.02 Breath or Blood Alcohol Level
  • Commercial vehicle drivers operating commercial vehicles =.04 BAC

3.       Aggravators

The changes in the new DUI law (Effective 10/01/00) establishes minimum jail times (which cannot be probated, suspended, conditionally discharged or otherwise subject to early release) if convicted of DUI and aggravating circumstance(s) exist: 

Aggravating Circumstances (KRS 189A.010 [11]) Result in higher minimum jail time:
  • Over 30 mph over speed limit
  • Wrong way on limited access highway
  • Causes accident resulting in death or serious physical injury
  • Alcohol level of .15 or more within 2 hours after operating
  • Refusal to submit to testing
  • Transporting passengers under 12 years of age
In 2015, Kentucky passed a mandatory ignition interlock device law for all repeat DUI convicted offenders and first time offenders with aggravating circumstances.  Click here to learn more.

4.       DUI Penalties

 i.      First Offense Within a Five Year Period 
      1. $200 - 500 Fine
      2. 2 to 30 Days in Jail*
      3. 90 Days of Alcohol or Substance Abuse Program
      4. 30 to 120 Day License Suspension
      5. Possible 48 Hours - 30 Days Community Labor
      6. If aggravating circumstances present-4 days imprisonment
ii.      Second Offense Within a Five Year Period 
      1. $350-500 Fine
      2. 7 Days - 6 Months in Jail*
      3. 1 Year of Alcohol or Substance Abuse Treatment
      4. 12 to 18 Month License Suspension
      5. 10 Days-6 Months Community Labor
      6. If aggravating circumstances present-14 days imprisonment
iii.      Third Offense Within a Five Year Period 
      1. $500 - 1,000 Fine
      2. 30 Days-12 Months Jail*
      3. 1 Year of Alcohol or Substance Abuse Treatment
      4. 24 to 36 Month License Suspension
      5. 10 Days-12 Months Community Labor
      6. If aggravating circumstances present-60 days imprisonment  Fourth Offense Within a Five Year Period
      7. Class D Felony
      8. Minimum Term 120 Days Imprisonment Without Probation*
      9. 1 Year of Alcohol or Substance Abuse Treatment
      10. 60 Month License Suspension
      11. If aggravating circumstances present-240 days imprisonment