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Drunk Driving Penalties: A Comparison Between Oregon and Arizona

While most states use the acronym DUI the state of Oregon uses DUII. DUII stands for Driving Under the Influence of Intoxicants. Much like a DUI, a DUII is not limited to solely drunk driving. Any type of intoxicant that is altering a driving state give Oregon police the legal right to arrest an offender. That said, the most commonly charged offense for a DUII in Oregon is drunk driving.

As an experienced Portland DUI Attorney I am often presented with questions related to how Oregon DUII laws compare to other states, especially in the Western part of the United States. There are drivers from Phoenix, Ariz. who are on vacation or thinking about making a move for personal reasons who receive traffic and/or driving citations and they want to know their legal rights. Below you will find a comparison of Arizona DUI laws and Oregon DUII laws:

Jail Time for a DUI in Arizona

  • 1st Offense – Minimum of one day and up to 10 days.
  • 2nd Offense – Minimum of 30 days up to 90 days
  • 3rd Offense – Minimum of 2.5 years in prison (4 months if sentenced to probation)

Jail Time for a DUII in Oregon

  • 1st Offense – 48 hours and up one (1) year
  • 2nd Offense – Up to one (1) year
  • 3rd Offense – Up to five (5) years

The maximum jail time for an Oregon DUI offense is very severe, especially when compared to other states.

License Suspension for a DUI in Arizona

  • 1st Offense – 90 day suspension
  • 2nd Offense – One (1) year revocation
  • 3rd Offense – One (1) year or 3 year revocation

License Suspension for a DUII in Oregon

  • 1st Offense – One (1) year
  • 2nd Offense – Three (3) years
  • 3rd Offense – Permanent

The fact that a third time offender will permanently have their license suspended in the state of Oregon is very severe. In Arizona, third time offenders will only have their license suspended for one year. This is a huge difference.

While the penalties may seem severe in the state of Oregon there are opportunities to reduce or dismiss DUII charges. It is important to note that the state of Oregon does not allow DUI offenders to plead down DUI charges to lesser offenses. There is a DUI Diversion Program which is a one year program that is offered to first time offenders who desire to have their DUI charge dismissed. This program requires the payment of fines, attendance of a victim’s class, and an alcohol evaluation and treatment.

Another interesting bit of information is the state of Oregon has found DUII checkpoints to be unconstitutional. You can find state by state DUI checkpoint laws here. In Arizona, DUI checkpoints are conducted at least once per month and it is upheld by the Federal Constitution. When driving in the state of Oregon, you may notice there are not checkpoints at any time throughout the year including July 4th and New Year’s which tend to be the time in which law enforcement officers are actively keeping the roads free of drunk drivers.

When receiving a DUI citation in either Arizona or Oregon it is imperative to contact a board certified legal professional who has experience in each respective state’s court system. As you can clearly see from the comparison of penalties, each state is quite different. The same holds true when it comes to the process for reduction or dismissal of charges.

If you would like to know more about reducing or dismissing your DUII charge in Portland, Oregon contact Mr. Andy Green today. You can also find more information related to Oregon DUII laws at his legal blog.

Andy Green is a Portland, Ore.-based attorney specializing in DUI, criminal defense and personal injury cases. Before starting his own law practice he worked for the Multnomah County District Attorney’s Office where he gained trial experience. He has defended clients all over the state of Oregon.

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