3rd DUI in Virginia

Are you facing an arrest for a 3rd DUI?

All DUI convictions in Virginia are serious, but naturally a third DUI conviction will be even more severe than a first or second conviction would be. 

A third DUI in Virginia is a class VI felony and requires one to five years in prison. There is a 6 month mandatory minimum period of incarceration for a DUI third within 5 years, and a 90 day mandatory minimum period for a DUI third within 10 years. 

A convicted felon may not vote, hold public office, may not possess or own a firearm and, will, in most cases face difficulties gaining or keeping employment.

Because a DUI third is a felony the process of going through a DUI third case is much more involved, and oftentimes, involves many more court appearances than a misdemeanor DUI will. Unless your attorney is able to resolve the case as a misdemeanor in General District Court your case will be resolved in Circuit Court after a preliminary hearing in General District Court, unless the Commonwealth's Attorney proceeded against you pursuant to a direct indictment.

Fortunately, as in all criminal cases and arrests for a DUI third does not mean you are automatically guilty. You will have your day in court and the ability to properly prepare a defense against the charges pending against.

A DUI third within five years is a class VI felony and carries 1 to 5 years in prison or up to one year in jail plus a $2500 fine.  Furthermore many judges will not grant a defendant facing a DUI third charge bond and that defendant can expect to be held it in custody at the jail during the pendency of his case.

Perhaps the most significant negative consequence of a conviction for a DUI third is that the defendant will lose his privilege to drive in Virginia indefinitely. In order to regain his privilege to drive the driver must petition the Circuit Court, and may not simply request a license from the DMV after having completed a pre-set license suspension period. After three years a driver may petition the court for a restricted license but the requirements to obtain this license are substantial. The defendant's vehicle will also be subject to forfeiture. There is also a six month ignition interlock requirement that must be completed upon restoration of a drivers license.

Consequences of DUI 3rd within 5 years

  • Class 6 felony conviction
  • 1-5 years in prison or
  • Up to 1 year in jail plus $2500 fine
  • 1000 mandatory minimum fine
  • 6 month mandatory minimum jail sentence
  • May petition the court for a restricted license 3 years after date of conviction. Limited to driving to and from work and in course of employment
  • Ignition interlock required at least 6 months upon restoration of license or with a restricted license during time of suspension
  • License suspended indefinitely but may petition after 5 years
  • Vehicle forfeiture
  • License suspension for 3 years by DMV § 46.2-391(A)

Consequences of DUI 3rd within 10 years

  • Class 6 felony conviction
  • $1000 fine
  • 90 day mandatory minimum jail time
  • Not eligible for restricted license
  • May petition for restricted license 3 years after date of conviction. Limited to driving to and from work and in course of employment
  • Ignition interlock required at least 6 months upon restoration of license or with a restricted license during time of suspension
  • License suspended indefinitely but may petition after 5 years
  • Vehicle forfeiture

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