Proof of Drink Driving
Penalties vary for drink driving convictions, based on the quantity of alcohol that was in your system at the time of arrest. Another variable is whether this is your first drink driving offence or whether you have other convictions in your past. All drink driving offences carry a penalty of a mandatory driving disqualification.
These disqualification periods are based on the amount of alcohol detected in your system at the time of arrest and whether it is your first offence or not.
|Concentration of alcohol||First offence (period of disqualification)||Second offence (period of disqualification)|
|(a) Not exceeding 100 milligrammes of alcohol
per 100 millilitres of blood; |
(b) Not exceeding 135 milligrammes of alcohol per 100 millilitres of urine;
(c) Not exceeding 44 microgrammes of alcohol per 100 millilitres of breath.
|1 year||2 years|
|(a) Exceeding 100 milligrammes but not exceeding
150 milligrammes of alcohol per 100 millilitres
of blood; |
(b) Exceeding 135 milligrammes but not exceeding 200 milligrammes of alcohol per 100 millilitres of urine;
(c) Exceeding 44 microgrammes but not exceeding 66 micorgrammes of alcohol per 100 millilitres of breath.
|2 years||4 years|
|(a) Exceeding 150 milligrammes of alcohol per
100 millilitres of blood; |
(b) Exceeding 200 milligrammes of alcohol per 100 millilitres of urine;
(c) Exceeding 66 microgrammes of alcohol per 100 millilitres of breath.
|3 years||6 years|
These are the minimum penalties as required by law, and the disqualification period may be increased at the judge's discretion.
Drink driving also carries financial penalties; as of 2007, the maximum fine is €5,000.
There are rules under which you can have the disqualification removed. These changed in 2007. The changes to the law state that those who have been disqualified from driving under a drink driving offence for the first time, and whose disqualification period is more than two years can petition the court for a removal of the disqualification and get their driving license restored. This is only possible if at least half the disqualification period has elapsed. At the court's discretion, the total disqualification period may be reduced to a minimum of two-thirds of the original time period in the disqualification order.
When an application for a driving license restoration is being considered by the court, the court will take into account the nature of the offence, the applicant's character, and the applicant's conduct since conviction.
There is no cost to appeal to the Circuit Court for a conviction reversal on a drink driving charge.
There is a fee of €20 to appeal to District Court for an early restoration of a driving license disqualification.
Applying For An Appeal
You may appeal a drink driving conviction in the Circuit Court by lodging the appeal in the District Court Office within 14 days of your conviction. The court clerk will assist you in these matters, but it's always best to talk to your solicitor in complicated matters such as these.
Read more about Irish drink driving offences by click through the following links:
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