Massachusetts OUI: Information & Programs

Massachusetts OUI Legal Information

Understand State Laws and Programs on OUI

Massachusetts OUI law is complicated. If you or a loved one has been arrested for drunk driving or breath test refusal, it is essential to obtain legal advice from an experienced defense attorney — before you say anything to law enforcement.

Every drunk driving case is different. Get the advice you need to deal with your case in a decisive manner. Contact the seasoned Boston defense attorneys of Sweeney and Associates, LLC, in Massachusetts, for help. We provide a free, confidential consultation and honest answers about how you can defend yourself against the charges you face.

Massachusetts OUI Information And Programs

  • Persons eligible for any of the programs are presumed to be an appropriate candidate for the program.
  • A judge may deny admission of an otherwise eligible defendant to a program, but must make specific written findings that a defendant is not a suitable candidate.
  • A defendant is not eligible for first-offender program if serious bodily injury or death was caused in the events that gave rise to the conviction for OUI.
  • Persons who are domiciled out of state may be allowed to attend out of state programs.
  • The defendants pay the costs associated with the programs.
  • There is a probation fee of $250 in addition to program fees.
  • The court may impose a minimum of 30 hours of community service.

Mandatory Alcohol Assessment

  • G.L. c. 90, § 24Q
  • Mandatory Alcohol Assessment by Department of Public Health or court approved program
  • All repeat offenders
  • Any offender with BAC of .20 or above
  • Must include assessment of the level of addiction to alcohol or drugs and recommended course of treatment
  • Additional fee will be charged for the assessment

Hardship Licenses

  • No hardship license from suspensions is imposed for breath test refusals, except in the case of a first offender who is enrolled in the OUI program.
  • Hardship licenses are issued in the discretion of the registrar on such terms and conditions as are deemed appropriate and upon a showing the causes of the past and present violations have been dealt with or brought under control.
  • First offenders: 12-hour hardship license is available upon entry into program.
  • Second offenders: 12-hour hardship license for education or employment reasons after 12 months, provided person has completed in-patient program. After 18 months he or she may request a new license.
  • New: As of January 1, 2006, a vehicle must have an ignition lock for you to obtain a hardship license.
  • Third Offense: 12-hour hardship license for education and employment purposes after two years and a new license on a limited basis after four years.
  • New: As of January 1, 2006, a vehicle must have ignition lock to obtain hardship license.
  • Fourth Offense: 12-hour hardship license for education and employment purposes after five years and a new license in a limited basis after eight years.
  • New: As of January 1, 2006, vehicle must have ignition lock to obtain hardship license.
  • Fifth offense or more: no hardship license

Free Case Evaluation

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Proof of Prior Convictions

  • Certified or attested copies of original court papers accompanied by 90:24(4)
  • Certified or attested copies of defendant's biographical and informational data from records of the department of probation
  • Certified copies of any jail or house of corrections, the department of correction, or the registry shall be prima facie evidence that a defendant before the court had been previously convicted
  • The documents are self-authenticating and admissible, after conviction of primary offense. No live witnesses or other corroborating testimony is necessary.

Manslaughter By Motor Vehicle

  • New Crime: G.L. c. 265, § 13 ½
  • Imprisonment for not less than 5 nor more than 20 years, and
  • A fine of not more than $25,000
  • Minimum mandatory sentence of 5 years
  • License loss of 15 years minimum, but may be up to a lifetime suspension

Child Endangerment While Operating MV

  • G.L. c. 90, § 24V - OUI With a Child Under the Age of 14
  • Punishes person who violates G.L. c. 90, § 24(a) or section (a) of 24G operating with a BAC of .08 or more, or
  • While operating under the influence, violates subsection (b) of 24G, or 24L, G.L. c. 265, § 13 ½

First offense penalties:

  • Fine not less than $1,000 nor more than $5,000, and
  • Imprisonment in house of correction for not less than 90 days nor more than 2.5 years
  • One-year loss of license

Second offense penalties:

  • Fine of $5,000 - $10,000
  • Mandatory minimum sentence of six months
  • Imprisonment in house of correction for not less than six months nor more than 2.5 years or not less than 3 years nor more than 5 years in state prison
  • Three year loss of license

Vehicle Forfeiture

Persons with three previous convictions may be required to forfeit their motor vehicle to the state district attorney and face civil actions. If such persons own the vehicle they are driving, it may be forfeited to the State District Attorney, which will bring a civil action for forfeiture.

Cancellation of Registration

  • Requires two or more previous convictions
  • Registrar may cancel registration of a motor vehicle owned by such person for the period of any license suspension

OUI Hardship Criteria

There must be a hearing before the Registry of Motor Vehicle's Appeals Board and any and all hardships are entirely at its discretion. In Massachusetts there is no right to operate; it is considered a privilege at the registrar's discretion. An experienced attorney can tell you what must be done by you, in advance of any hearing, to increase your chances of getting a hardship license.

Contact Our Quincy OUI Attorneys About Your Case

If you have any further questions or concerns about state law regarding your case, our Massachusetts OUI defense attorneys can help. Contact Sweeney & Associates, LLC, for a free, confidential case evaluation today.

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