Kentucky DUI Laws & Penalties

Kentucky DUI Laws

Kentucky DUI is a serious crime and requires the advice of a lawyer specialized in Kentucky DUI cases, don't make the mistake of seeking representation from any lawyer whose practice is not solely focused on KY DUI cases. 

In Kentucky there is a special provision (different from most other states) that grants you the right to contact a lawyer before submitting to your blood or urine test. You have ten to fifteen minutes to attempt to get a hold of a lawyer before you will be required to take the chemical test.

Kentucky DUI First Offense Penalties

To be considered a first offender in a Kentucky DUI case, you will need to have a clean DUI record that goes back at least 5 years (5 years is considered the 'look back period' in Kentucky).  If you are considered a first offender, you'll most likely face the following consequences:

  • Between $200 and $500 in fines
  • Jail time of 2 to 30 days
  • Substance Abuse Program attendance for 90 days
  • Possible community service
  • License revocation for 30-120 days

Your first time offense can be subject to aggravating circumstances, which give you more jail time. These circumstances include:

  • Speeding more than 30 mph over the posted speed limit
  • Going the wrong way on the highway
  • Alcohol level of .18
  • Refusing the BAC tests
  • Causing an accident that harms or kills someone
  • Having children under the age of twelve in your car

If you are guilty of one of the above conditions, Kentucky DUI law says that you must spend up to four days in jail. You cannot be released until those four days are served.  

Kentucky Repeat DUI Offenders

Repeat Kentucky DUI offenders face stiffer consequences. For example, a second offender faces a one-year suspension of his driver’s license, and must attend a year of treatment and education classes. The jail time also increases to seven days. A third offender must spend a month in jail and will lose his license for two years. 

Here is a summary of the punishments faced.

Kentucky Second Offense DUI Penalties

  • Fines between $350 and $500
  • $250 service fee
  • Jail time of 7 days to 6 months
  • Alcohol assessment and treatment program for 1 year
  • Drivers license suspension for 12 to 18 months


Kentucky Third Offense DUI Penalties

  • Fines between $500 and $1,000
  • $250 service fee
  • Between 30 days to 1 year of jail time
  • Drivers license suspension for 2 to 3 years
  • Mandatory Alcohol Evaluation and Treatment program for 1 year

Kentucky Fourth or Subsequent Offense DUI Penalties

  • Class D felony
  • 1 to 5 years imprisonment
  • Fines between $1,000 and $10,000
  • $250 service fee
  • Loss of Drivers license  for 5 years
  • Mandatory Alcohol Evaluation and Treatment

Kentucky BAC Assumptions

  • BAC levels of .001% to .049% are not considered to be under the influence.
  • BAC levels .05% to .079% are not considered under the influence, but are admissible in court as evidence.
  • BAC levels of .08% or greater are considered to be under the influence.

Kentucky Implied Consent Laws

  • Chemical testing is allowed. Blood, breath or urine testing to be selected by the officer. Plus a PBT.
  • The officer is required to advise the defendant of the penalties for refusing the tests; the defendants rights to an independent chemical test and license suspension penalties.
  • The defendant does not have the right to have an attorney present during testing.
  • Defendant is only allowed up to 15 minutes to contact an attorney following the testing.
  • Test results of .08% or greater within 2 hours of driving carry a 90 day license suspension.
  • Test refusal carries a 6 months to 5 year license suspension and possibly a longer jail sentence.
  • Defendendant has the right to an independent chemical test at their own cost. The independent test must be done by a Commonwealth installed, tested and maintained machine.

Chemical Testing

  • All chemical testing must be performed in accordance with Secretary of Justice Cabinet regulations in order to be admissible in court.
  • Blood draws for police testing must be administered by a licensed physician, registered nurse or other qualified person.
  • An independent chemical test may be done by a qualified person. The cost of the independent test is the responsibility of the defendant.
  • Test results must be made available to the defendant and his or her Kentucky DUI attorneyupon request.

Kentucky SR22 Insurance Considerations

No matter if you are a first time offender or a repeat offender, your Kentucky DUI will carry serious consequences for your insurance premiums. You will either find that you are dropped by your insurance provider, or you will find that your premium cost skyrockets. This can even affect your family members that are on your insurance policy.

DUI Arrest Help.com has partnered with the largest and most trusted SR22 insurance provider in the state of Kentucky and has worked out a special discount only available here for our website visitors.

You won't be able to find a cheaper SR22 insurance policy in Kentucky for any less.  Type in your zip code below so we can provide you with the cheapest rates in your area.



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Additional Kentucky DUI Resources

  • Kentucky DUI First Offense -  Detailed first offense information including punishments after a first offense DUI in Kentucky.

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

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

  • Kentucky DUI Assessment Programs - We offer a complete listing of Maryland's approved alcohol treatment programs.