Driving While Under the Influence DUI (Drunk Driving) Charges

Washington State DUIs are one of the most common offenses charged.  There are approximately 40,000 people per year accused of Washington state DUI. Consequently, we have a lot of experience with DUIs in Washington State having helped hundreds of people with their cases.  We have earned an excellent reputation in this field.

DUIs are one of the hardest cases to defend; many attorneys have told us that they are harder than even murder cases. The law is difficult, the science is complicated and there is a lot of public sentiment against people accused of DUIs. As attorneys, we have worked very hard to become highly skilled at representing people accused of Washington DUIs.

Take your DUI (Drunk Driving) charge very seriously

A conviction for a DUI in Washington will have long lasting consequences. A criminal record can affect your employment, your future and your personal freedom.

Hire an experienced Washington DUI (Drunk Driving) Lawyer

Understanding the Washington DUI laws and courtroom proceedings can be a challenge. Hiring a qualified Washington DUI attorney such as Erin Bradley McAleer whose practice concentrates on drunk driving defense can make a difference in the outcome of your drunk driving charge. Your initial consultation is both free and confidential.

What happens to first time offenders in Washington?

In Washington State, you are DUI if you have a blood alcohol content (BAC) over .08% (02% if you are under 21, and .04% if you are a commercial driver). You are a first offender if you have had no DUI or other Administrative action in the last 7 years.

A Washington State DUI for a first offender commonly results in mandatory jail time of at least 24 hours, mandatory loss of license of at least 90 days, possible installation of the ignition interlock device, alcohol evaluation and follow-up treatment, and attendance at a DUI victim’s panel.

The State has two opportunities to take away your driver’s license. Even if criminal charges are never filed, the Department of Licensing will automatically suspend your license if you have a breath test above .08 or if you refused the breath test. If criminal charges have been filed, you can lose your license if you are convicted of a DUI. You can fight the automatic suspension by requesting a hearing within 30 days and sending in $100 to the Department of Licensing for the cost of the hearing.

Jail Time:

1 to 365 days, with a minimum 24 consecutive hours being mandatory. If your BAC was .15% or higher, then 48 hours of jail time are mandatory.

Electronic Home Monitoring:

For first time offenders, the court may impose electronic home monitoring in lieu of the mandatory minimum jail time. Instead of mandatory minimum jail time, not less than 15 days (30 days with if your BAC was .15% or higher).


$350-$5,000 ($823 total minimum fine w/statutory assessments). If your BAC was 15% or higher, the total minimum is $1,078.

Test Refusal

One year license suspension if you refuse the breath test.

License Suspension:

90 days, or one year with a BAC of .15% or higher.

Ignition Interlock Device:

This is a device which checks for alcohol before and even during the period you are driving your car. Required at the Judge’s discretion, or if your BAC was .15% or higher.

Alcohol / Drug Education or Treatment:

As determined by the Court, but probably including alcohol evaluation and follow-up treatment, with a minimum of one eight-hour class and up to two years of treatment. Also, you will be required to and attend a DUI victim’s panel.

Under 21:

You are DUI if you have any alcohol at all in your system. Your driver’s license will be revoked. Anyone under age 21 who obtains, possesses, or consumes alcohol will face a maximum of 365 days in jail and a $5,000 fine.

Commercial Driver:

You are DUI with a BAC of .04% or higher. You will be disqualified for one year for a first time conviction for a .04 or higher BAC, or for refusing to take the BAC test. If any level of alcohol is detected, law enforcement can place you out-of-service for 24 hours.


If you plead guilty and are placed on probation, the length of probation will be five years.

Reinstating Your Driver’s License:

You must: file and maintain proof of financial responsibility for the future with the Department of Licensing, and pay $150 driver’s license reissue fee. A driver’s ability test is not required for first offenders.


Your insurance rates will probably go up, anywhere from 30% to 100%.

The Law Office of Erin Bradley McAleer will fight to ensure that you achieve the best possible outcome in your court case. Call attorney Erin Bradley McAleer today at (360) 334-6277 to schedule an immediate confidential free consultation in Washington State.

Washington Attorney Erin Bradley McAleer represents clients throughout Southwest Washington State, including in Clark County, Cowlitz County, and Skamania County and Vancouver, Battle Ground, Camas, La Center, Ridgefield, Washougal, Woodland, Yacolt, Castle Rock, Kalama, Kelso, Longview, North Bonneville, and Stevenson. Attorney Erin Bradley McAleer focuses on the areas of Criminal Defense, Traffic Infractions, Landlord Tenant, Personal Injury, Firearm Rights Restoration, and Post-Conviction Relief (Vacating & Sealing Criminal Records).