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Whether DWI is a misdemeanor or felony depends on the number of prior convictions for DWI within 10 years prior to arrest. The ten year time frame starts from the date the defendant completed probation for the previous offense up to the date of arrest for the new offense.

If the person charged with DWI has one or zero prior DWI convictions, not arrest(s), then the current charge would be a misdemeanor. Misdemeanor DWI includes a sentencing range of up to 6 months in parish jail. Mandatory time may also be included if it is a second offense and/or if the BAC level is .15 or above.

DWI third and fourth offense are felony charges. These charges carry very lengthy prison sentence ranges. DWI third offense carries 1-5 years in prison while DWI fourth offense carries a penalty of 10-30 years in prison.

So, DWI can be a misdemeanor or a felony depending on the number of prior convictions for DWI. The predicate convictions can be from out-of-state. The prosecutor must prove the existence of the predicate.

For more information regarding DWI laws in Louisiana, call the Barkemeyer Law Firm.

Carl Barkemeyer wrote the published book on DWI: Practical Information for the Accused and Attorneys in Louisiana. He regularly gives lectures and advice to other attorneys regarding how to successfully defend clients for DWI.

Louisiana DWI & Criminal Lawyers

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Louisiana criminal lawyers and DWI attorneys at the Barkemeyer Law Firm providing legal defense services for clients in Baton Rouge, Ascension, Livingston, Tangipahoa, Port Allen, Alexandria, New Orleans, Lafayette, Metairie, Kenner, Gretna, Hahnville, Chalmette, Slidell, St. Tammany, St. Charles, St. John, St. Bernard, Mandeville, Covington, Shreveport, Bossier, Jefferson, and all of Louisiana.

DISCLAIMER: The information on this website is not formal legal advice nor does it create an attorney-client relationship.

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Louisiana DWI And Criminal Law Firm

Barkemeyer Law Firm has multiple locations in Louisiana. Click Office Locations to find out which office is right for you.

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