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New Hampshire DWI Third Offense

If you are facing a New Hampshire driving while intoxicated (DWI) third offense, you should know that the penalties are much more severe than for a first or second conviction. For this reason, you should hire a qualified DWI defense lawyer to defend your case and increase your chances of a reduction or acquittal of your charges.

A third DWI conviction requires mandatory jail time. In fact, you could spend at least six months in a county correctional facility, although five months could be suspended if you successfully complete a 28-day residential treatment program. Upon completion of this program, you may be required to seek additional treatment or counseling per the court’s discretion. The fines for a third offense range from $750 to $2,000.

The driver’s license punishment for a third offense is very severe—if convicted, you could lose your driving privileges indefinitely. However, after five years, you can petition the court for a license reinstatement; although there is no guarantee that it will be granted. If your petition is successful, you will be required to have an ignition interlock device installed in all of the vehicles registered under your name for a period of 12 months to 2 years. In addition, SR-22 insurance is required as a condition of license reinstatement.

All of these penalties can have a trickledown effect on your day-to-day life. Maintaining gainful employment is difficult if you have to spend months behind bars. When you do complete your sentence, you could have difficulty getting to work every day without a license. And without a job, how will you afford the fees and expenses associated with your conviction?

Even if you have been charged with a third offense, you need to remember that you have not yet been convicted. A good DWI defense lawyer will conduct an independent investigation into your drunk-driving arrest to look for evidence that can help your case. For example, was there probable cause to stop you? Were the field sobriety tests administered properly? Did factors, other than alcohol, cause you to fail the breathalyzer test?