Penalties for Impaired Driving in Toronto

Don't drink and drive! Car key on a wooden pub table in front of blurred friend clinking with a beer.

There are minimum penalties that are imposed on people who are convicted of impaired driving.  The Criminal Code is very specific about the minimum penalties however, there are also penalties under the Ontario Highway Traffic Act as well.

Let’s look at some of the DUI charges in Toronto under the Criminal Code and Ontario Highway Traffic Act.

Penalties Under the Ontario Highway Traffic Act

Alcohol impaired driving and drug impaired driving, which includes cannabis, over-the-counter drugs, and other substances, are treated the same under Ontario Highway Traffic Act.

Immediate penalties for a first-time offence

The minimum immediate penalties imposed under the Ontario Highway Traffic Act, if pulled over, include suspension for 90 days, a first-time penalty of $550, and a $275 fee for license reinstatement. Depending on the situation, your vehicle is most likely going to be impounded for at least a week. 

Immediate penalties for second and subsequent offences

The penalties mentioned earlier were for first-time offences and not multiple DUI offences. If you’re a second-time offender or third time in under 10 years of the first offense, you may be looking at taking mandatory impaired driving education. You might also be getting an ignition interlock device while facing all the penalties associated with a first-time offence.

Penalties if convicted under Ontario Highway Traffic Act

We have discussed the immediate penalties that you may face upon being pulled over however there are additional penalties if you’re convicted. These may include a one-year license suspension for first-time offence, a three-year license suspension for second and subsequent offences, and a mandatory impaired driving education program.

Zero tolerance policy under Ontario Highway Traffic Act

The government has a zero tolerance policy for under 21 year olds who are convicted of impaired driving. They are required to pay an additional fine of $60 to $500 depending on the situation they are in with an additional license suspension of 30 days. However, this zero tolerance policy does not apply to individuals under the age of 21 who are legally authorized to use cannabis for medicinal purposes.

If you are facing charges under the Ontario Highway Traffic Act, contacting Ontario criminal DUI lawyers is the best way to find out what penalties you are looking at and how it may impact you in the future. KIVLaw Criminal Defence Law Firm has some of the best Ontario criminal DUI lawyers to help you fight DUI charges.

Penalties Under the Criminal Code

Section 320.14 under the Canadian Criminal Code state that if you are convicted for impaired driving, the minimum penalty can range from a $1,000 fine for a first-time offence to imprisonment of 30 days for a second-time offence and imprisonment of 120 days for subsequent multiple DUI offences. These are however immediate penalties and if convicted, the consequences are more severe.

Penalties if Convicted Under the Criminal Code

Under the Criminal Code, you may have to face a jail term of no more than 2 years for less serious convictions and up to 10 years if it is a serious conviction leading to an indictment.

Besides the fine and imprisonment, there is also license suspension which ranges between one to three years for a first-time offence, two to ten years for a second-time offence, and three years to a lifetime of license suspension for third-time and subsequent offences.

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