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Is this my first or second ovi?

Cleveland, OH |

i got arrested for an ovi in 2009. I got it down to a wreckless op. I got an ovi the other day is this my first or second ovi?

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Attorney answers 6


If you are convicted of this OVI it will be considered to be your first OVI conviction. That is one of the benefits of your prior reduction. That doesn't guarantee you the minimum sentence however - the court does have the discretion to impose a greater sentence, but the statutory minimum will be that of a first offense.

You should discuss your case will a criminal/OVI defense attorney to assess any possible defenses you may have to this OVI.


F. "Bill" William Powers

F. "Bill" William Powers


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Whether it is your first ovi depends on how many times you have been convicted of ovi or a similar offense within six or twenty years. The years difference is based on whether you have taken the breath test or refused on any previous ovi conviction. A first time ovi is a misdemeanor of the first degree and carries up to 180 days in jail with a minimum of 3 days in jail or in a drivers intervention program (a 3 day alcohol traffic class) Ovi's carry many secondaryp penalties such as loss of license . First offense carries anywhere from six months up to three years. Also a fine up to $1075.00 and possibly probation. Your insurance will also go up and you would most likely have a reinstatement fee with the BMVof $475. I suggest hiring a criminal defense attorney who is trained/experienced in ovi defense. I suggest finding someone who is a member of OACDL (ohio association of criminal defense lawyers) and has attended the OACDL ovi seminar held annually. You. Can find a list of those attorneys by googling ohio association of criminal defense lawyers and there is a find an attorney section. Good luck

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The recent OVI charge should be considered as a 1st in 6 years because of the prior reduction. However, depending on the court you are in, if convicted, the judge may not sentence you as if it is your 1st in 6 years; you're still subject to up to 180 days in jail, not to mention fines, suspensions, etc.

I would recommend contacting a criminal defense attorney who regularly handles OVI's

Scott Kuboff, Esq. is providing this information solely for the purpose of educating the reader of the availability of legal representation and of potential penalties for various offenses. In no way should this be construed as an evaluation of or legal advice about your particular case. Scott Kuboff, Esq. do not have any information regarding the facts of your case. If you wish to obtain legal advice, please contact an attorney.


If you are convicted of OVI for this new charge it will be your first OVI. The penalties, if convicted, will depend if it was a low tier or high tier/refusal.

No attorney-client privilege or relationship is established by this post. This is intended as general legal advice being given with limited information to assist the public is making decisions about hiring legal counsel. You should always hire legal counsel when in doubt about your rights and follow that legal counsel accordingly.


If your first OVI was reduced to Reckless Operation, then this new charge would "technically" be only your "first offense." The penalties upon convcition for DUI first offense lifetime include up to a $1,000 fine; 3-day jail minimum up to 6 months jail; 6 points; 6 month to 3 year license suspension; yellow plate; ignition interlock; attendance at a 72-hour DUI school instead of 3-day jail minimum. Your sentence also depends on the facts of the case and whether or not you refused or submitted to a Breath-Blood-Urine test. The Judge can increase your penalties because of the prior case that was reduced. He/she has "discretion" to do so. You should really consider hiring a local, experienced DUI lawyer to look at your case and give you advice about what to do or not do. There are many legal technicalities that determine whether or not the State can prove you are DUI. Only an experienced DUI lawyer knows what to look for. Do not handle this yourself or hire someone without a lot of experince (in the court and with the Judge you have). The outcome of your case could very well depend on your lawyer. Good luck!


Assuming it was in or around Cleveland (where it indicates you are posting from), you just contact Ken Bossin or Mark Gardner and they will answer this question in a Court/Judge specific manner, you would then be well served to retain one of them.

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