Each state maintains specific regulations on defining drunk driving and punishment for drunk driving. There can be more than one set of guidelines and a series of consequences varying in severity. In this blog is information on MA drunk driving laws.

Definition of Legally Drunk

In the state of MA, maximum blood alcohol levels vary by age and type of vehicle. Commercial drivers are legally drunk with a blood alcohol level of .04 or greater. The limit for non-commercial operators over 21 years of age is .08 or greater. For persons under age 21, the maximum is .02. If you are guilty of driving drunk, there are a range of penalties that may be inflicted.

Information On MA Drunk Driving Laws

The consequences for drunk driving are based on the past crimes and other circumstances. It may include jail time, monetary fines, and drivers license suspension.

Offense Jail Time and Fines License Suspension
1st Offense up to 2.5 years and/or a $500-$5,000 fine 45-90 days
2nd Offense 60 days to 2.5 years and a $600-$10,000 fine 2 years
(potential reinstatement after 1 years)
3rd Offense 180 days to 2.5 years and a $1,000-$15,000 fine
2.5-5 years in a state facility and $1,000 to $15,000 fine
8 years
(potential reinstatement after 2 years)
4th Offense 2-2.5 years and a $1,500 to $25,000 fine
2.5 to 5 years in a state facility and a $1,500 to $25,000 fine
10 years
(potential reinstatement after 5 years)
5th or More Offense at least 2.5 years
2.5 to 5 years in a state facility and a $2,000 to $50,000 fine
Revoked for Life

In addition to the ones noted above, other consequences may be imposed to certain types of drivers.

  • Commercial Operators
    Commercial drivers found guilty of driving drunk are not allowed to drive commercial vehicles for at least 1 year. If hazardous materials were transported in the vehicle during the offense, the time period is extended to 3 years. Any future drunk driving may lead to lifetime disqualification from driving commercial vehicles (although this punishment can be lowered to 10 years).
  • Drivers Under Age 21
    Younger offenders face a 210-day license suspension on their first offense. They may also be ordered to complete education or substance abuse rehabilitation programs based on their age and blood alcohol level.

Other Information on MA Drunk Driving Laws

Drunk driving can result in even more severe consequences in cases involving severe bodily injury or death to another person or if it takes place with a minor younger than 14 years of age in the vehicle. MA drunk driving laws are always a subject of debate and can change as further legislation is introduced. The details above are only an overview, must not be interpreted as legal advice, and is subject to change without notice. Consult with a local attorney for current information and legal guidance if you are accused of drunk driving.