Iowa law states that an individual may only be convicted of a drunk
driving offense if the prosecuting attorney proves to the court that
the individual was operating an automobile under alcohol or drug
influence or while having a blood alcohol content level of 0.08 percent
Operating while intoxicated or driving under the influence charges will
not stick unless the prosecuting attorney can prove through evidence
that the individual is guilty. Legal terms have determined that driving
while under the influence or while intoxicated includes having the
engine running or while having physical control of the automobile.
Iowa DUI Consequences
In Iowa the number of offenses an individual has dictates the severity
of his or her sentencing. Prior DUI offenses will increase punishments
in varying degrees. Any DUI offense can end in a driver's license
suspension. All punishments can vary depending on an individual's blood
alcohol content level at the time of the arrest and if a chemical test
Driving under the influence as a first offense is a serious misdemeanor
in Iowa. Punishments for this serious misdemeanor can include between
two days and one year in jail with a fine between twelve hundred fifty
dollars and fifteen hundred dollars along with thirty-two percent of
the government four hundred-dollar surcharge. This judgment can be
deferred if a breath test was not refused, the blood alcohol content
was not over 0.15 percent, and no other individual was injured.
A second offense of driving under the influence is classified as an
aggravated misdemeanor and is punishable by incarceration between seven
days and two years with or without a fine between eighteen hundred
fifty dollars and five thousand dollars. Unlike other states Iowa does
not erase records after five years, so any kind of DUI offense in the
past twelve years will count as a prior offense -- deferred or
A third offense of driving under the influence is classified as a Class
D Felony. Punishments for this felony can include incarceration
anywhere between thirty days and five years with or without a fine
between thirty-one hundred twenty-five dollars and seventy-five hundred
dollars. Any subsequent offenses are classified as Class D Felonies.
A third DUI offense can earn a revocation of six years and will only be
eligible for temporary licensing two years following conviction. An
ignition interlock device is required in these circumstances. A DUI
offense where an individual was injured will earn an addition year of
revoke and an ignition interlock device is mandatory.
No matter the number of prior offenses, if a DUI offense resulted in a
death, the individual will receive six extra years of revoke. He or she
will be eligible for a temporary licenses after two years with a
mandatory ignition interlock device.
Iowa has a zero tolerance law for minor drunk driving under the age of
twenty-one. Any blood alcohol content level will be charged with a DUI.
A driver's license can be revoked for sixty days with a first offense
and ninety days for any subsequent offenses.