Driving under the influence is a serious traffic infraction, a misdemeanor in Nevada and carries harsh penalties.  When most people think of DUI they think it is Driving Under the Influence of Alcohol.  You can be arrested for a DUI for Driving Under the Influence of alcohol, illegal drugs, prescription drugs and over-the-counter medicine that by taking impairs your ability to safely drive a vehicle.


Driving under the influence: ALCOHOL — If this is your first offense for driving under the influence of alcohol, there is a chance you can get off with a small fine or less. Let Reno DUI Law Firm help you.

Driving under the influence: MARIJUANA — If were arrested in Reno for Driving under the influence of marijuana you could be facing some time behind bars.

Medical marijuana patients are not permitted to use marijuana and drive.  If you test positive while driving you will need an experienced DUI lawyer to plead your case. 

Driving under the influence: DRUGS — Maybe you just started a new medicine, or you forgot that already took your medicine and accidently took a double dose. You may have been under the influence, but the question is, why? Talk to an experienced defense lawyer who can build a case.


A first time DUI with no death or serious injuries is a misdemeanor. Nevada DUI penalties usually include:

  • up to 6 months in jail, but the court typically imposes a suspended jail sentence so the defendant does no time unless he/she violates a court order
  • up to $1,000 in fines plus court costs (the court typically fines $585)
  • Nevada DUI School (an alcohol awareness program at the driver’s expense)
  • Nevada Victim Impact Panel such as a MADD lecture
  • An order to “stay out of trouble,” meaning no new arrests or citations other than minor traffic tickets
  • If the defendant’s BAC was 0.18 or greater, the judge will also order an alcohol/drug dependency evaluation which costs $100, perhaps an alcohol or drug abuse treatment program, and a Nevada breath interlock device on the defendant’s car for up to 3 years.

Note that the Nevada Department of Motor Vehicles hearing will also impose a three-month suspension of the defendant’s driver’s license. However after forty-five days the DMV usually allows drivers to receive a restricted license allowing commuting to and from work.

If you have been arrested for a 2nd or 3rd DUI offense the penalties will increase as they will for mitigating factors, including DUI with injury or death and DUI in a work zone.


Nevada DUI prosecutors generally rely on four types of evidence in trying to prove a drunk driving case in court:

  • you were not driving in a normal, sober manner
  • you smelled, talked, walked and behaved like a drunk person
  • you could not perform the roadside sobriety exercises correctly
  • your the suspect’s DUI breath test or blood test showed a blood alcohol level above a .08

Contact a defense lawyer now. Second and third offenses of DUI are more difficult to defend but, you could have been to a bar that was over-pouring, or you just added new medication and did not realize it would affect you.

If you just received a call from the jail and your loved one said they were arrested for DUI, tell them to remain calm, and of course silent. Then call Reno DUI Attorney Lee Hotchkin at (775) 786-5791.  Lee can meet you in his office during normal business hours, after hours, weekends as well as at the jail by appointment.