In Florida, the offense of driving under the influence of alcohol, chemical
substances and drugs is covered under Section 316.193 of the Florida Statutes.
It can be prosecuted as a misdemeanor or a felony, but it depends on a
variety of factors, such as the person's history of DUIs and whether
anyone was injured or killed.
DUI is a misdemeanor, but that is not
always the case. A DUI defendant can be charged with a felony DUI if they are
a repeat offender, or if they were involved in an accident involving serious
bodily injury or death.
A Florida DUI is prosecuted as a
- The defendant has been convicted of a third DUI within a 10-year time period.
- The defendant is convicted of a fourth or subsequent DUI.
- The defendant seriously injured someone else as a result of driving under
- The defendant killed someone else while driving under the influence.
Penalties for a Florida Felony DUI
In Florida, the penalties for a felony DUI are as follows:
- Third DUI within 10 years or fourth or subsequent DUI is a third degree
felony, punishable by up to a $5,000 fine and/or 5 years in prison.
- A DUI involving serious bodily injury is also a third degree felony, punishable
by up to a $5,000 fine, and/or 5 years in prison.
DUI Involving Death is a Felony
Another felony DUI classification involves DUI manslaughter under Section
316.193 of the Florida Statutes. DUI manslaughter is a second degree felony,
punishable by a fine not to exceed $10,000 or 15 years in prison, or both.
DUI manslaughter and
leaving the scene is a first degree felony, punishable by not more than a $10,000 fine and
up to 30 years behind bars. A person commits this offense when the driver
convicted of DUI manslaughter
fails to render aid after a DUI accident and flees the scene.
If you, or someone you love is facing felony DUI charges, don’t hesitate to
contact a Tampa DUI attorney from Thomas & Paulk, P.A. As
former prosecutors who have handled
thousands of cases, we can provide you with a hard-hitting defense!