Washington State’s Laws forbid a person from operating or being in physical control of a motorized vehicle with:
Blood alcohol level of .08% or greater
A THC concentration of 5 nanograms or more per milliliter of blood
While under the influence of drugs, alcohol, or marijuana
“Actual physical control” is defined as a person in control of the mechanics of the vehicle. The vehicle does not have to be moving or even running, but the driver can assert a defense against a DUI charge by showing the vehicle was safely pulled off the roadway at the time of the arrest.
Washington’s “Implied Consent” Rule:
In Washington, you must take a BAC test if you are pulled over due to being suspected of driving under the influence. This can be taken as a breathalyzer or blood test. After taking this test, you have the legal right to request additional tests from your chosen medical professional. A police officer cannot force you to take a breathalyzer test. This said, if you refuse, your driver’s license will be suspended for a minimum of 1 year, depending on if this is your first offense or not. In addition, you can still be convicted of DUI, which will carry more penalties.
Penalties of a DUI:
First Offense: If charged with a first-time DUI offense, you will be fined anywhere between $350-$5,000. Mandatory jail time of 1-364 days will also be imposed. However, an offender can choose to be on house arrest for 15 days instead or attend 90 days of the sobriety program. The offender’s license will also be suspended for a minimum of 90 days.
Second Offense: A second-time offender will face $500-$5,000, as well as 30-364 days of jail time. However, the court can also rule that you are put in jail for four days in addition to either 180 days on house arrest or 120 days in the 24/7 sobriety program. A second offense can also lead to the vehicle being seized and sold. The offender’s license will be suspended for a minimum of 2 years.
Third Offense: Third-time offenders will serve 90-364 days in jail, six months in the 24/7 sobriety program, and $1,000-$5,000 in fines. On top of this, If the third offender refused chemical testing or had a BAC of .15% or more, the court will order $1,500 to $10,000 in fines, 120 to 364 days in jail, six months in the 24/7 sobriety program, and 150 days of house arrest. A third-time offender’s license will be suspended for a minimum of 3 years