Colorado First Offense DUI Laws

DUI laws and penalties, fines, license suspension, sr22 filing

A person who gets arrested on a first offense DUI charge in Colorado will be charged in one of two ways. The first is if that person's blood alcohol concentration, or BAC was .08% or greater, they will be charged with the offense of DUI. The second way a person may end up facing a drunk driving charge is if they are stopped and found to have a BAC level between .05% - .079% they will be charged with DWAI, or driving while ability impaired.

Colorado First Offense Penalties


First time offenders will be faced with a minimum fine amount of $300 plus all associated court costs, up to a maximum fine amount of $1,000 plus all associated court costs. The court does have the discretion to impose a large fine amount if it is determined to be necessary.

Jail Time

A first time DUI offense will result in a minimum jail sentence of 5 days up to a maximum of 5-years. The length of jail time beyond the minimum will depend partly upon the circumstances surrounding your case such as any injuries to others, minor in the vehicle at the time, or property damage. These are just several examples of how a person's jail sentence may be extended by the court.

Drivers License Suspension

If the DMV upholds the officer's suspension of your license you will be facing a 3 month suspension period from the DMV. First time offenders may apply for a restricted license through the DMV after serving the first 30 days of the suspension period. If you refused or did not successful complete any part of the chemical testing your license will be suspended for 1-year and you will not be eligible to apply for a restricted license anytime during the 1-year period.

In order to reinstate your license following your suspension period or before the DMV grants you a restricted license you will be required to show proof of financial responsibility to the DMV in the form of an SR-22 form filing. You will have to maintain your SR22 filing status with the DMV for a period of 3-years from the date of reinstatement. You can obtain an SR22 insurance filing by entering your zip code below and completing the short form on the following page:

Ignition Interlock

First time DUI offenders who registered a BAC of .17% or greater will be required to have an ignition interlock device installed in their vehicle for a minimum of 2-years following the reinstatement of their driver's license.

Community Service

All first time offenders will also be required by the court to serve a minimum of 48 hours of community service up to a maximum of 96 hours.

Chemical Test Refusal

As noted above in the Drivers License Suspension section, anyone who refuses to submit to a chemical test or fails to complete the chemical test will have their license suspended for a period of 1-year with no chance of receiving restricted driving privileges during that time.

Alcohol Education Class

All first time offenders will be require to attend and successfully complete an approved Colorado alcohol education class.

Colorado Administrative Drivers License Hearing

Upon being arrested for a first offense DUI charge in Colorado the arresting officer will immediately confiscate your driver's license and issue you what is called a "Notice of Suspension" warning. This notice will function as your temporary driver's license for the next 7 days.

Important: It is very important to note that you only have 7 days from the date that is noted on your "Notice of Suspension" warning in which to request anadministrative driver's license hearing with the DMV if you wish to avoid the pending suspension of your driver's license. We strongly urge you to contact a Colorado DUI lawyer who has experience representing clients at DMV hearings if you hope to have a successful out come at your hearing.

The purpose of the administrative hearing at the DMV is for the DMV hearing officer to review the information that has been provided by the arresting officer against you to determine if in fact you were in violation of driving under the influence and your driver's license should be suspended by the DMV. You and your lawyer will also be given the opportunity to present any evidence that you have gathered in your favor that refutes the officer's evidence.

The hearing is also a great opportunity for your lawyer to listen to and challenge the arresting officer's testimony as part of preparing your case for your day in court. Remember, the DMV administrative hearing is purely to deal with the potential suspension of your driver's license and has nothing to do with the pending criminal case you will face in court.

Colorado SR22 Insurance Information & Quotes

All first time DUI offenders in Colorado will be required to perform an SR22 filing with the Colorado Department of Motor Vehicles. The SR22 is basically a form that your insurance provider will file with the DMV on your behalf.

The SR22 is real just a rider or attachment to your high-risk auto insurance policy that states that your insurance provider is obligated by law to inform the DMV if there is ever a lapse in your insurance coverage during the 3-year filing period. to insure that you avoid a potential lapse in your SR22 insurance coverage it is important for you to get multiple quotes from various insurance companies in your area who offer SR-22 filings with the DMV.

By entering your zip code below and filling out the simple 3-part form on the following page you will receive 5 separate quotes from providers in your area on your SR22 insurance needs. Then all you have to do is choose the one with the lowest premiums and signup for the policy.

Additional Colorado DUI Resources

  • Colorado DUI Laws - A complete overview of Colorado DUI laws including fines, jail time and penalties for each offense.

  • Colorado SR22 Insurance -  Learn everything you need to know about Colorado SR22 filing requirements with the DMV and find out how you can save hundreds of dollars each year on your Colorado SR22 insurance.

  • Colorado DUI Lawyers -   Contact one of our Colorado DUI lawyers today.

  • Colorado Alcohol Education Classes -   We offer a complete listing of Colorado approved alcohol treatment and education programs.