FAQs

Will I go to jail if I drive while impaired?

Depending on the circumstances of your impaired driving offence, you could be sentenced to a period of jail if you are convicted. This is especially so if the impaired driving resulted in a person being injured or killed. There are also mandatory minimum periods of jail for repeat offenders starting at 30 days for a second offence and 120 days for a third offence. In addition to periods of incarceration, you are facing significant fines, driving prohibitions and a criminal record that could significantly affect your car insurance premiums, employment, immigration status and ability to travel. 

Will I go to jail if I drive while impaired?

If this is your first offence for impaired driving, driving over 0.08 or refusing to provide a sample of breath, and you didn’t cause bodily harm or death, the chances of you being sentenced to jail are very slim. You are however facing mandatory minimum fines and a driving prohibition. This is in addition to the 90-day driving suspension you will receive immediately after you are charged. After the 90-day period expires, you will be forced to install the Interlock device for a period of 12 months. If you choose not to install the device, you will face a combined period of 15 months without the ability to drive. This suspension applies whether you are found guilty or not.

Penalties for Impaired Driving

Impaired by Alcohol

Charge:

  • Alcohol-impaired driving
  • Having a Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) at or over 80mg per 100ml of blood within 2 hours of driving

Penalty:

  • 1st offence: Mandatory minimum $1000 fine; Maximum 10 years imprisonment
  • 2nd offence: Mandatory minimum 30 days imprisonment; Maximum 10 years imprisonment
  • 3rd offence: Mandatory minimum 120 days imprisonment; Maximum 10 years imprisonment

Impaired by Drug

Charge:

  • Drug-impaired driving
  • Having 5ng or more of THC per ml of blood within 2 hours of driving
  • Any detectable level of LSD, psilocybin, psilocin, ketamine, PCP, cocaine, methamphetamine, 6-mam within 2 hours of driving
  • Having 5mg or more of GHB per 1 litre of blood within 2 hours of driving

Penalty:

  • 1st offence: Mandatory minimum $1000 fine; Maximum 10 years imprisonment
  • 2nd offence: Mandatory minimum 30 days imprisonment; Maximum 10 years imprisonment
  • 3rd offence: Mandatory minimum 120 days imprisonment; Maximum 10 years imprisonment

Combination

Charge: Having a BAC of 50mg per 100ml of blood + 2.5ng or more of THC per 1ml of blood within 2 hours of driving

Penalty:

  • 1st offence: Mandatory minimum $1000 fine; Maximum 10 years imprisonment
  • 2nd offence: Mandatory minimum 30 days imprisonment; Maximum 10 years imprisonment
  • 3rd offence: Mandatory minimum 120 days imprisonment; Maximum 10 years imprisonment

Refusal to comply with demand for sample

Penalty:

  • 1st offence: Mandatory minimum $2000 fine
  • 2nd offence: Mandatory minimum 30 days imprisonment; Maximum 10 years imprisonment
  • 3rd offence: Mandatory minimum 120 days imprisonment; Maximum 10 years imprisonment

Drug-impaired driving – Summary conviction

Charge: Having over 2ng but less than 5ng of THC per ml of blood within 2 hours of driving

Penalty: Maximum $1000 fine

Charge: Impaired driving causing bodily harm

Penalty:

  • Summary conviction: maximum 2 years imprisonment less a day
  • Indictment: maximum 14 years imprisonment

Charge: Impaired driving causing death

Penalty:

  • Indictment: Maximum life imprisonment

Charge: 1st offence + BAC of 80-119 ml

Penalty: mandatory minimum $1000 fine

Charge: 1st offence + BAC of 120-159ml

Penalty: mandatory minimum $1500 fine

Charge: 1st offence + BAC of 160 mg or more

Penalty: mandatory minimum $2000 fine

Will I go to jail if I drive while impaired?

Hire an Experienced Impaired Driving Lawyer

If you have been charged with an impaired driving offence including driving over 0.08 or refusing to provide a sample of breath, you need an experienced impaired driving lawyer. Call Cory Wilson today for a free, no obligation consultation.