Is a DUI a Felony? Felony or Misdemeanor in Alabama?

By: Criminal Defense Lawyer Whitney Polson, author of Alabama DUI Defense


Is an AL DUI a Felony

Is a DUI a Felony in Alabama?

The Alabama Legislature writes all Alabama laws. This includes felony and misdemeanor criminal code sections relating to the state of Alabama DUI laws. These “laws” are more commonly called “statutes.” Whitney Polson co-authored the definitive book on DUI laws in Alabama in 2016.

No one wants a criminal record, especially for felony charges. The quality of the legal team you hire can make a HUGE difference. Regardless of your blood alcohol content, or a DUI refusal, our Alabama attorneys know how to help.

Alabama Super Lawyers Whitney Polson or Mark Polson will review your DUI felony or misdemeanor case facts in a FREE lawyer consultation and tell you more about your DUI court, plus tell you the likelihood of getting your DUI reduced to reckless driving. Based on your case facts you may have a chance to have the DUI dismissed for a first offense DUI.

AL DUI Felony Misdemeanor


Is Drunk Driving a Felony?

Potential clients want to know: “Is getting a DUI a felony?” When it comes to DUI-DWI laws in ALL states, certain common “aggravating” factors tend to increase the likelihood of felony vs misdemeanor DUI.

Whether the driving under the influence offense will be a misdemeanor or a felony, is typically based on your number of prior DUI convictions within a statutorily-determined time period. A 4th DUI felony in AL within ten years is just one way for getting a DUI felony. For such offenses, the only way such drivers will be restored their driving privileges is with an ignition interlock device.

Felonious DUI Driver's License Revoked


Plus, when a serious bodily injury or death of another person occurs at the hands of an impaired driver by drunk driving or drugged driving, a felony DUI situation can arise. So, fatalities or serious injury (bodily harm) caused by drunken driving or drugged driving can be a DUI felony in Alabama.

What Is a DUI Felony under Alabama DUI Laws?

In general terms, a felony DUI is a crime with state prison time of over one year. Some Alabama DUI felony laws call for a minimum prison sentence or county jail time of 1 year and 1 day or longer.

When legal interpretation disputes arise about how the statutes apply to a client’s case, the Judicial system gets to determine the meaning of those Alabama criminal law statutes pertaining to DUI laws in Alabama. Unless the Legislature later acts to change Alabama law after a Court ruling, this new appellate court interpretation will alter certain DUI defense strategies of your Alabama DUI lawyer.

Under Alabama DUI laws, the DUI first offense (not involving a DUI accident resulting in serious injury or death or possibly for having a DUI with child in car) is a misdemeanor. For an Alabama 2nd DUI or third DUI offense, Class A misdemeanor punishment is also applicable, absent the aggravating factors covered above.

Is a Second DUI a Felony?

So, on a national level the first offense DUI is a misdemeanor, unless another person has died in a DUI-related accident for the 1st offense DUI Alabama driver, or another person was seriously injured by your vehicle that is attributable to your DUI in Alabama. The Alabama DUI first offense conviction or a 2nd DUI in Alabama in a person’s lifetime is a misdemeanor under Alabama DUI laws.

Alabama Repeat DUI Felony


Felony DUI in Alabama – For a Fourth DUI Offense in AL

Question: When is a DUI considered a felony in Alabama?

Answer: A 4th DUI within 10 years in Alabama and in any other state.

This is the reason that Birmingham DUI attorney, Alabama DUI law book co-author, and Super Lawyers Rising Star Whitney Polson and his father Mark Polson, an expert of Alabama DUI laws for 45 years, fight so hard to prevent even a first offense DUI from being on your Alabama driver’s license.

A DUI offender with criminal charges in Alabama is usually only facing Class A misdemeanors, but almost every DUI has a 10-day time limit (after the ARREST date) to appeal the administrative license suspension. Call our law office TODAY for help with filing this appeal.


Get a FREE Lawyer Consultation Today With a Top Alabama DUI Lawyer

Arrested for an Alabama DUI? Need to hire a Birmingham criminal defense attorney? Call our criminal lawyers to find your best Alabama DUI lawyer. Call our DUI law firm now for immediate help, at (205) 871-8838. ON WEEKENDS or AFTER BUSINESS HOURS, use our 24-hour DUI lawyer number at (205) 222-4544.

Ask us about help with filing your Alabama DPS appeal within 10 days after arrest.


Birmingham DUI Lawyer

Office Phone: (205) 871-8838

Polson & Polson, P.C.

2824 Central Avenue #150

Birmingham, Alabama 35209