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Penalties for an OWI with a Pregnant Woman in the Vehicle

By Andrew Mishlove on February 07, 2020


Glass of alcohol beside car keys and handcuffsAcross the nation, states are taking measures to dissuade drivers from operating their vehicle under the influence of drugs or alcohol. In Wisconsin, OWI penalties are severe, especially for repeat offenders, due in large part to new laws enacted in 2017.

There are additional circumstances that can increase OWI penalties even for first-time offenders. For instance, drivers arrested for an OWI with a pregnant woman in the vehicle are likely to face harsher penalties. The OWI attorneys at Mishlove and Stuckert, LLC, Attorneys at Law can defend against OWI charges in an attempt to minimize or eliminate what could be life-altering penalties for clients.

OWI Penalties and Special Circumstances

The penalties that a driver faces after being arrested for OWI depend on the details of their circumstances. OWI offenses are primarily based on whether it is the driver’s first time facing OWI charges, or if the driver has been charged with the crime in the past.

Drivers charged with a first-time OWI offense are likely to face a fine of around $300, but fines can increase to thousands of dollars for repeat offenses. Similarly, a first-time offender can have their license revoked for up to nine months, but repeated offenses can result in a three-year license suspension. Finally, while a first-time offender is unlikely to face jail time, a second offense can result in a sentence of up to six month, and four or more offenses are considered a felony.

The number of OWI offenses a driver has is not the only thing that influences penalties. Special circumstances can also make Wisconsin OWI penalties harsher, including having a minor or pregnant woman in the car at the time of the offense. Having a minor in the car can double OWI penalties and result in jail time, even for first time offenders. If a pregnant woman is in the vehicle at the time of an OWI, drivers are also likely to face steeper consequences.

Penalties for OWI Injury Involving a Pregnant Woman

If an OWI offense involves an injury, penalties are significantly harsher. Wisconsin law recently expanded the definition of “injury,” so nearly anyone in the vehicle at the time of an OWI has the right to claim an injury, even if they were not physically hurt. Penalties for an OWI that results in injury or great bodily harm may include:

  • Up to 12.5 years in jail
  • Fines of up to $25,000
  • License suspension for up to two years
  • Mandatory installation of an Ignition Interlock Device

If OWI injuries involve a minor or pregnant woman, minimum penalties can be expected to be doubled.

Hiring a Defense Attorney

Drivers facing OWI charges may feel helpless when they learn of potential penalties. However, a good OWI defense attorney can be extremely beneficial. Attorneys Mishlove and Stuckert have used a number of defense strategies in the past to successfully minimize or eliminate OWI penalties for clients. OWI penalties can significantly impact a person’s finances, career, and life, so it is always worth hiring an attorney to defend against charges.

Contact Us

If you have been arrested for OWI, the attorneys at Mishlove and Stuckert, LLC would be happy to examine the details of your case and recommend a defense strategy. To learn more about your legal options, send us a message at your earliest convenience or call our practice at (414) 206-6919.

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