Operating under the influence, or OUI, is a serious crime in Massachusetts. You may face suspension or loss of your driver’s license, fines, or jail time from the courts and the Registry of Motor Vehicles. Penalties for multiple convictions increase significantly.
The Commonwealth of Massachusetts OUI laws are complex. However, you do have rights. You may benefit from learning some basic facts.
BAC limits determine Massachusetts OUI offenses
Blood alcohol content (BAC) determines whether you are legally driving under the influence. Below are the BAC limits and their corresponding ages or qualifiers.
- 08% or higher―Drivers 21 years old or older operating regular passenger vehicles
- 04% or higher―Drivers operating commercial vehicles
- 02% or higher―Drivers younger than 21 years old
Law enforcement tests
Massachusetts police officers may use the following tests to determine blood alcohol concentration. The test results indicate whether police should arrest someone for suspicion of drunk driving.
- Field Sobriety Tests
The most common field sobriety tests are the horizontal gaze nystagmus test, the one-leg stand, and the walk and turn
- Breath Tests
Obtaining a Massachusetts driver’s license includes implied consent to take a breath test if an officer stops you for suspicion of OUI. Refusing the test may result in penalties, including automatic license suspension
- Blood Tests
In some circumstances, police may request that you take a blood test
It is possible to fight an OUI charge. For example, you may fail a test without having consumed alcohol if the testing apparatus is not properly calibrated. Learn the facts. Protect your rights.