Arizona DUI Laws Second Offense

by Aaron M. Black • December 14, 2023

This is the third installment of a four part series concerning Arizona DUI Law 2024 to explain a second time DUI offense and the consequences if convicted.


A second offense DUI conviction has harsher penalties but remains a Class 1 misdemeanor, the most serious of the misdemeanors, and the amount of alcohol in the driver's system, the blood alcohol concentration (BAC) has a hand in determining the penalties including higher fines and the jail term will increase.

In Arizona a BAC of .08 is considered the legal limit, except for a commercial driver license while driving a commercial vehicle, then the BAC drops to .04.
Note: Minors caught underage drinking and driving can be charged a Baby DUI for as little as .01.

Driving while under the influence of other intoxicating substances, including prescription drugs may also result in a DUI charge.

Operating a watercraft or boat in Arizona while intoxicated? That can lead to a DWI conviction.

Seven-year calculation

When the second DUI case happens after seven years of the previous DUI arrest, the current case is treated as a first offense. But when a new DUI charge occurs within seven years of a prior DUI arrest, the second offense DUI charge is prosecuted as a repeat offender and carries stiffer penalties.

Out of State DUI convictions

Also, the second DUI includes DUI convictions from other states. That is an example of Arizona’s zero-tolerance policy.

Consequences of a second misdemeanor DUI conviction

The punishment and consequences of a second offense DUI include...

Jail Time

A second DUI is punishable by 90 consecutive days of jail time, but 60 of those days can be suspended if the defendant successfully finishes mandatory alcohol or drug classes.

Jail Time

Heavier fines

Convictions for a second DUI offense result in heavier fines totaling $3,468.

Driver’s license revocation

Your driver’s license is revoked for one year but a restricted license is available after 45 days. In addition, an ignition interlock device is required for one year.

Drivers License Suspension

Probation for a second DUI offense in Arizona

Probation is possible for up to five years

Community service

30 hours of community service can be court ordered.

Extreme DUI in Arizona

If the defendant’s blood alcohol concentration exceeds .15, but less than .20 they may be charged with an Extreme DUI

Punishment and fines increase and jail time will be lengthened to 120 days.

Super Extreme DUI in Arizona

If BAC measures above .20 they may be charged with a Super Extreme DUI.

Fines are increased further, and jail time is increased to 180 days.

Aggravated DUI Charges in Arizona

You may be charged of an aggravated DUI if you are driving under the influence and...
  • Are stopped by law enforcement with a child in the vehicle
  • Driving with a suspended license
  • Or have three DUI convictions within the previous eighty-four months (7 years).

Consequences of a felony DUI conviction

Under Arizona’s Sentencing guidelines the presumptive penalty for Class 6 felony is a year in state prison; and if an aggravated sentence is proven, the prison sentence is two years. A Class 4 felony raises the presumptive sentence to 2.5 years and can be aggravated up to 3.75 years. Aggravated DUI charges also carry up to 10 years of probation.

Minimum fines can total $4,675.50, high risk auto insurance rates will increase as a result of your criminal case, or your policy may be canceled.

Beyond incarceration and fines, a felony conviction will follow the offender and can negatively impact the repeat offender’s life. Felons lose the Second Amendment right to own and possess a firearm and the right to vote in local and federal elections or to enlist in the military. Landing a job can be difficult and landlords, who have a duty to protect their residents from harm, may not rent the repeat offender a place to live. Your car insurance rates will skyrocket even after the loss of your driver's license.

Repeat offender programs

Arizona has established four programs aimed at reducing the number of repeat DUI offenders, and the offender must pay for those programs.

Vehicle Impoundment

The driver’s vehicle is impounded for a set period of time at the defendant’s expense. The vehicle’s owner has to pay for the towing charges and the storage fee, which is limited to no more than $15 per day in Phoenix, which totals $450 for 30 days.

Ignition Interlock Device

Installation of an ignition interlock device, a device that prevents the engine from starting if it detects alcohol on the driver’s breath must be installed. Note it must be a certified ignition interlock device.

Ankle Monitor

An ankle or wrist bracelet that reveals the offender’s location must be worn, and authorities routinely call the offender on a landline, not a cell phone, to confirm the offender is home.

Ankle Monitor



The repeat offender is placed on probation and must attend an alcohol screening education treatment programs.

Common second-offense DUI defenses

Several potential defenses are available under Arizona law for both second offense misdemeanor regular DUIs and 2nd offense felony DUIs.

Probable cause

The police officer must have a legal reason to stop the vehicle. Probable cause and reasonable suspicion is required to make a traffic stop. Note DUI Checkpoints are an exception to this rule.

Car Keys in Ignition - Actual Physical Control Requirement For DUIActual physical control

In order be charged with a DUI you must have actual physical control of any vehicle. If the keys weren't readily available to the driver, this is an effective defense strategy that the services of an experienced DUI defense attorney may use to get a lesser conviction in a plea deal or potentially have your case dismissed.

Right to remain silent

If the officer did not recite the Miranda rights to avoid self-incrimination or the right to have an attorney involved during questioning, that may be used as part of your DUI defense.

5th Amendment - Right To Remain Silent

Field sobriety tests

There may be physical ailments that eschewed the field sobriety test of the person.

Challenges to testing

The level of intoxication or the manner in which blood was drawn, stored or tested can be challenged.

Depending on the circumstances of your case, additional DUI defenses may come into play. A defense strategy prepared by a Phoenix DUI defense lawyer can make a big difference in the outcome of a second offense DUI and your punishment in a DUI case.

Aaron M. Black Law for Second DUI defense

Should you or someone you care for be charged or are under investigation for a repeat DUI, it is imperative that you have an experienced DUI defense attorney such as myself to defend you at the earliest possible time, especially if you have prior felony convictions.

During my career spanning decades as a criminal defense attorney, I know that good people can find themselves in legal difficulty and that is why I ensure they have the best defense possible. My goal is always to win a dismissal.

Aaron M. Black Law provides personalized legal services and encouragement. You will always be talking directly to me at every stage of your second DUI case. A service not every DUI attorney provides. My goal is always to have all charges dismissed.

Begin your DUI defense immediately by calling 480-729-1683 at any time on any day, and I will respond promptly unless I am in court on at trial. Or use the online contact form on my website.

I defend repeat DUI cases in the state of Arizona, including Maricopa, Pinal, Yavapai, and Coconino County Superior Courts.

Previous: Arizona DUI Laws & 1st Offense DUI Laws

Next up: Arizona Third DUI Offense Law


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