DWI Provision Changes

In Minnesota, punishments related to Driving While Intoxicated (DWI) convictions are separated into two distinct realms. The first encompassing criminal punishments (i.e. jail time, fines), and the second made up of administrative punishments (i.e. driver license revocation, plate impoundment etc.). In recent years, issues have arisen regarding the threshold at which court punishments are enhanced. Currently, driving at .20 triggers enhanced penalties, but this is inconsistent with the administrative threshold of .16. This legislation aims to bring the criminal threshold in line with the administrative threshold. The bill also requires those convicted of criminal vehicular homicide to enroll in the ignition interlock program, cancels the requirement for some DWI offenders to get a limited drivers’ license while participating in the ignition interlock program, and creates various incentives for DWI offenders to participate in the ignition interlock program. Evidence shows that participating in ignition interlock leads to safer roads, while simply revoking someone’s license results in them usually driving illegally.

STATUS: The bill is on the Senate Floor. (S.F. 1073)

NEXT IN JUDICIARY: DWI Omnibus Bill


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