Operating a vehicle under the influence of alcohol or drugs is a serious criminal offense in Ohio. Penalties vary depending on the offender’s OVI history, the circumstances of the arrest and other factors.

If you face an OVI court date in Ohio, learn more about the potential penalties for a conviction.

First OVI conviction

The law categorizes a first-time OVI as a misdemeanor offense. If convicted, the driver will receive:

  • Six points on his or her driving record
  • Drug and alcohol assessment and treatment indicated
  • Mandated enrollment in a driver intervention program
  • Driver’s license suspension of at least three months and up to three years
  • At least three days and up to six months in jail
  • Fines from $375 to $1,075

Second OVI conviction

A second OVI within six years of the first is also a misdemeanor in Ohio, but carries elevated penalties. These may include:

  • Six points on his or her driving record
  • Mandatory drug and alcohol assessment followed by substance use treatment if indicated
  • Impoundment of the person’s vehicle for 90 days
  • House arrest
  • Driver’s license suspension of at least one year and up to five years
  • At least 10 days and up to six months in jail
  • Fines from $525 to $1,625

Subsequent OVI convictions

For a third misdemeanor OVI, the offender could receive:

  • Six points on his or her driving record
  • Mandatory drug and alcohol assessment followed by substance use treatment if indicated
  • Forfeiture of his or her vehicle
  • House arrest
  • Driver’s license suspension of at least two years and up to 10 years
  • At least 30 days and up to one year in jail
  • Fines from $850 to $2,750

A fourth OVI within six years is a felony in Ohio. In addition to the above penalties, an offender will receive possible lifetime license suspension, fines of up to $10,500, and at least 60 days and up to five years in jail.