Alternative DUI Penalties in Florida

Arrested for drunk driving in Jacksonville, FL?

Have you been arrested for drunk driving in Jacksonville, Florida? Jason K.S. Porter, PA can help! Our firm is wholeheartedly committed to giving our clients the best legal representation we can offer. With more than three decades of legal experience behind us, our attorneys have the experience, practical skill and know-how to stand up for your rights in court. After an arrest, you may feel overwhelmed by the legal process ahead of you.

That's why our firm is dedicated to giving people like you the legal advocacy they need. If you've been accused of driving drunk, you want a heavyweight defense attorney fighting on your side. Call our office today to learn more about the firm, discuss your case or to see what a top-notch Jacksonville DUI defense attorney can do for your case.

DUI Penalties

In the United States, drunk driving is a serious crime with serious consequences. Although the specific penalties for a DUI conviction vary from state to state, one thing remains the same: DUI penalties are harsh. If convicted of driving under the influence for the first time, you may be subject to a $500 to $1,000 fine. If convicted of driving with a blood alcohol level (BAL) of .15 or higher, you may be subject to a $2,000 fine. Subsequent convictions are punishable by more extreme fines.

Additionally, your first DUI may be punished by a 9 month period of incarceration. Subsequent DUIs are punishable by five years in prison. Additionally, if your DUI conviction involved injury or property damaged, you may be subject to harsher penalties. However, DUI penalties are not limited to imprisonment and fines; a drunk driving sentence could include community service, probation, license revocation, DUI school and other penalties.

Community Service

In Florida, your first drunk driving conviction is punishable by community service. If convicted of a standard DUI, you may be charged with at least 50 hours of community service or a fine of $10 per hour of community service. This fine is implemented in addition to other fines associated with your conviction. Simply put, community service involves donating your time to the local community and is distinct form volunteering because it is a legal requirement – not a voluntary effort. Any number of activities may qualify, but all community service must be performed without compensation.

Additionally, politically affiliated services (such as working on a political campaign) do not qualify as legitimate community service. What types of services qualify? According to Florida Statute § 948.031(2), maintenance work for a state-owned building or piece of property may qualify as public service. Additionally, landscaping on a county or municipal park or recreation area may be considered community service. Finally, working at a state, municipal or county hospital, nonprofit organization, agency or developmental services institution may qualify as community service as well.


Your first DUI conviction is punishable by one year of probation. According to Florida Statute § 948.001, probation refers to a form of community supervision. It involves specific contact with parole and probation officers and may include other terms as well. Different offenses may merit different types of probation. For instance, you may be sentenced to drug offender probation if convicted of a drug crime. Unlike normal probation, drug offender probation involves intense supervision and individualized treatment programs.

On the other hand, administration probation is a noncontract form of supervision sentenced to individuals who pose a low threat to the community. If convicted of drunk driving, you may be sentenced to a period of probation in which you will keep in contact with a probation officer on a regular basis. Depending on the unique circumstances surrounding your case, you may be required to see an officer once a month or once a week. Failing to meet with your probation officer may lead to a probation violation.

DUI Programs

If convicted of drunk driving, you may be ordered to attend a DUI program. DUI programs are offered by private and professional non-profit organizations for the purpose of educating and evaluating individuals convicted of drunk driving. You may be required to attend a Level I or a Level II DUI program – depending on the circumstances surrounding your case. Level I courses include at least 12 hours of classroom instruction. DUI classes involve lectures and interactive learning techniques. Level II DUI courses involved significantly more classroom time (at least 21 hours) and usually involve an interactive, group classroom setting. Level II classes will not have more than 15 students in them. Generally speaking, Level II classes focus on repeat DUI offenders and many of the individuals enrolled in Level II classes are referred to treatment.

Jacksonville DUI Lawyer

If you've been accused of drunk driving, your freedom and reputation are at stake. If convicted, you may be subject to any number of serious penalties. At Jason K.S. Porter, PA, we are wholeheartedly dedicated to giving our clients the best criminal defense representation we can offer. As a firm, we are committed to helping people. If you've been arrested, you don't have to feel alone.

When you work with a lawyer from our firm, you can have peace of mind that a skilled legal advocate is on your side. Contact us today!

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