DUI In North Dakota - Criminal Component

Fargo DUI Lawyer Serving Clients Throughout North Dakota

A person commits the offense of driving under the influence ("DUI") if that person drives or is in actual physical control of a vehicle upon a highway or area, the public has access to if any of the following apply:

  • The person has an alcohol concentration of at least .08
  • The person is under the influence of intoxicating liquor
  • The person is under the influence of any drug or substance or combination of drugs or substances leaving the person incapable of safely driving
  • The person refuses chemical testing

The severity of a DUI charge ranges from a Class B misdemeanor to a Class C felony. A Class B misdemeanor is punishable by a maximum of 30 days in jail, a fine of $1,500, or both. A Class A misdemeanor is punishable by a maximum of 360 days in jail, a fine of $3,000, or both. A Class C felony is punishable by a maximum of five years in prison, a fine of $10,000, or both.

The severity of a DUI charge increases if the person committed prior DUI offenses:

  • A first or second offense within the last seven years is a class B misdemeanor
  • A third offense within the last seven years is a class A misdemeanor
  • Four or more offenses within the last 15 years is a class C felony

Minimum criminal penalties

First offense within seven years:

  • $500 minimum fine, up to $1500 fine
  • Up to 30 days jail
  • Mandatory chemical dependency evaluation

First offense within seven years, BAC of .16 or greater:

  • $750 minimum fine, up to $1,500 fine
  • Two days mandatory jail (or 20 hours community service), up to 30 days jail

  • Mandatory chemical dependency evaluation

Second offense within seven years:

  • $1,500 minimum fine
  • 10 days mandatory jail, up to 30 days jail (90 percent of the jail time may be house arrest if approved by the court)
  • 360-day mandatory participation in the 24/7 sobriety program, up to two years
  • Mandatory chemical dependency evaluation
  • Surrender of vehicle license plates unless undue hardship is shown or the driver participates in the 24/7 sobriety program
  • Possible forfeiture of motor vehicle and/or installation of ignition interlock device

Third offense within seven years:

  • $2,000 minimum fine, up to $3,000 fine
  • 120 days mandatory jail, up to 360 days jail (90 percent of the jail time may be house arrest; up to 60 days jail time may be suspended with treatment and 24/7 program)
  • 360-day mandatory participation in the 24/7 Sobriety Program, up to two years
  • 360-day mandatory supervised probation, up to two years
  • Mandatory chemical dependency evaluation
  • Surrender of vehicle license plates unless undue hardship is shown or the driver participates in the 24/7 sobriety program
  • Possible forfeiture of motor vehicle and/or installation of ignition interlock device

Fourth or subsequent offense within lifetime:

  • $2,000 minimum fine, up to $10,000 fine
  • One year and 1 day mandatory prison time, up to five years

  • Two years mandatory participation in the 24/7 sobriety program, up to five years

  • Two years mandatory supervised probation, up to five years

  • Mandatory chemical dependency evaluation
  • Surrender of vehicle license plates unless undue hardship is shown or the driver participates in the 24/7 sobriety program
  • Possible forfeiture of motor vehicle and/or installation of ignition interlock device

Attorneys Specializing In North Dakota DUI Cases


Matthew Dearth, Mark A. Friese, Luke Heck, Drew Hushka, Bruce D. Quick and Jesse Walstad