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How Much Do You Have To Drink To Be Arrested For DWI In North Carolina?


Have you been arrested for DWI in North Carolina? Has your license been revoked? Are you facing a large fine and lengthy prison sentence? North Carolina is not a state where you should drink and drive. NC DWI laws are tough and it is unlikely that you will be successful in pleading guilty to a lesser charge. Because only a small percentage of DWI charges are dismissed entirely, your best chance of winning at trial is to hire an experienced DWI attorney.

What is the Legal Limit in North Carolina to be Arrested for DWI?

You can be arrested for DWI in North Carolina if your BAC (blood alcohol content) is .08 or higher. If you are under the age of 21, any alcohol in your system will result in an arrest. You can also be arrested for DWI in North Carolina if the officer determines you are impaired because you failed a field sobriety test or you exhibited other signs of impairment (i.e. slurred speech, reckless driving, odor of alcohol, lack of coordination, etc.).

If you are convicted on an arrest for DWI, you face revocation of your license, fines up to $10,000, prison sentences up to 3 years, community service, alcohol treatment programs, and installation of an ignition interlock on your vehicle. Your sentence will depend on your previous record and the circumstances surrounding your DWI arrest.

Are Some Types of Alcohol Better Than Other Types of Alcohol to Drink?

No, alcohol is alcohol regardless of the type. Your BAC will be the same whether you drink wine, beer, or liquor. Your BAC is affected by other factors such as:

  • Your gender;
  • Your weight;
  • The amount of alcohol you consume;
  • How quickly you consume the alcohol;
  • Medications you take;
  • Food you have consumed; and,
  • Alcohol tolerance.

Because each person’s body is different and the factors vary from person to person, it is extremely difficult to determine how many drinks will result in a BAC of .08 or higher. Therefore, it is very dangerous to attempt to determine your BAC level by counting glasses.

When a person’s BAC is .08 or higher, that person typically exhibits the following types of behavior:

  • Impairment of memory, judgment, reasoning, and self-control;
  • Lack of coordination and balance;
  • Dramatic mood swings;
  • Vision, speech, and hearing is impaired;
  • Impaired perception while driving; and,
  • Inability to judge speed and control speed while driving.

Again, it is extremely difficult to determine if a driver has a BAC of .08 or higher by simply observing behavior. A breath, blood, or urine test is the only way to determine a person’s BAC.

Contact an Experienced Jacksonville DWI Attorney

“Attorneys Who Aggressively Protect Your Rights”

The Trevor J. Avery Law Firm is a full-service Jacksonville criminal law firm that is committed to helping individuals who have been charged with DWI in North Carolina. We focus on getting you the results you want while offering you a cost-effective solution to your legal needs.

If you have been charged with driving while impaired, you need an experienced DWI lawyer in your corner. We represent clients throughout Duplin County, Onslow County, and the surrounding communities. Call our office at (910) 405-8459 or contact us online today for a free case evaluation.