New Hampshire DWI Laws
If you are caught driving while under the influence of alcohol or controlled substances (DUI) in New Hampshire, the penalties are quite high. You are subject to losing your driver's license for a period of time, spending time in jail, and huge fines. While drinking alcohol and/or using drugs and driving is never a good idea, here is some information to assist you should you find yourself charged with a DUI in New Hampshire.
An impaired driving charge in New Hampshire is known as a "DWI" or driving while intoxicated offense. Similar to other states, New Hampshire law prohibits driving while intoxicated by either alcohol, drugs, or a combination of the two. The law also prohibits drinking alcohol and driving with a blood alcohol level (BAC) of 0.08 percent or more in your system.
Impaired Driver Care Management Program (IDCMP) Requirement
A driver must also complete an Impaired Driver Care Management Program (IDCMP) (see below) as a part of his or her sentence. This is in addition to any jail time, fines, and probation the court may impose upon a driver who is convicted of a DWI in New Hampshire. The purpose of this course is twofold: to raise awareness about the dangers of impaired driving and also to assess and help those persons who are in need of substance abuse treatment services.
Each person convicted of a DWI will need to first complete an intake interview to determine if the driver needs further assistance, counseling, or treatment for alcohol or substance abuse. If the person is determined not to need further services, he or she will still be required to complete a shorter, Impaired Driver Education Program (IDEP) or a Weekend Impaired Driver Education Program (WIDEP). However, if the evaluator determines the driver needs more intensive treatment, he or she will be subject a longer treatment plan.
What if I Don't Complete an IDCMP?
If you simply choose not to complete the program, your ability to legally drive your vehicle will be impacted. On a first offense, the court will impose will revoke your driver's license for the full time period allowed and your driving privileges will not be restored until you have successfully completed an IDCMP.
This chart lays out the basics of New Hampshire's DUI laws:
New Hampshire DWI Laws: Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) Limits and Implied Consent
|"Per Se" BAC Limit||0.08 Percent|
|Zero Tolerance (Underage) BAC Limit||0.02 Percent|
|Enhanced Penalty (Aggravated) BAC Limit||0.16 Percent|
|Implied Consent to Submit to BAC Test?||Yes|
New Hampshire DWI Laws: Select Penalties
|Minimum License Suspension or Revocation (1st, 2nd, 3rd offense)||9-18 months/ 3 years / ---|
|Mandatory Alcohol Education, Assessment and Treatment||Yes|
|Vehicle Confiscation Possible?||No|
|Ignition Interlock Device Possible?||Yes (repeat and high-BAC offenders)|
New Hampshire DWI Resources:
- New Hampshire DWI Statute: Driving or Operating Under the Influence of Drugs or Liquor (N.H. Rev. Stat. 265-A:2).
- Impaired Driving Program - Overview of Impaired Driving Intervention Programs, which provide education and substance abuse counseling (New Hampshire Dept. of Health and Human Services).
- Administrative License Suspension - The Rules surrounding administrative license suspension following a DWI arrest (New Hampshire Administrative Rules).
Facing DWI Charges? Get Legal Help Today
If you or someone you love has been arrested and charged with an alcohol or drug-related DWI offense, you likely have many questions. A good first step is to meet with an attorney, who knows what to look for in the police report and can help you plan your defense. Find an experienced New Hampshire DWI attorney today.