Driving under the influence (DUI) is the most common term associated with drinking and driving. However, Maine uses the acronym OUI “operating under the influence” for alcohol or drug-related traffic violations. The state requires you to carry DUI insurance Maine (SR22 insurance) to reinstate your license after an OUI conviction.
How to get DUI insurance Maine
The Maine BMV immediately suspends a driver’s license based on a police report and a BAC (blood alcohol concentration) result of 0.08% or higher. You’ll need to buy a DUI insurance Maine policy with an SR22 filing when this happens. This high-risk insurance is necessary for license reinstatement, regardless of whether you own a vehicle or not.
Once you’ve completed the state’s requirements for conditional license reinstatement, talk with an UltraCar Insurance agent to get an owner or non-owner insurance policy. We’ll attach an SR22 insurance certificate to your policy and file it with the Maine BMV. After the BMV processes this filing, you can get back on the road.
Can I get DUI insurance Maine if I don’t own a car?
Drivers who don’t own a car can purchase Maine Non Owner SR22 Insurance. Non-owner insurance is less expensive than owner-operator insurance since it does not insure a vehicle. However, non-owner insurance coverage works differently than owner/owner-operator insurance and has several restrictions and limitations.
Maine Zero Tolerance Law
Most states have tough OUI penalties for drivers under 21, and Maine is no exception. The Maine Zero Tolerance Law applies to drivers under age 21 who operate a motor vehicle with any measurable percentage of alcohol in their blood.
These younger drivers will have their driving privileges suspended for 12 months. If the driver refuses to take a sobriety test, the license suspension is 18 months. The state assigns an additional 180-day suspension if another passenger under age 21 is in the car. If a driver under age 21 has a BAC of 0.08% or higher, the state charges them with a criminal OUI offense, which leads to a 12-month license suspension. Reinstatement of driving privileges requires these drivers to carry DUI insurance Maine.
What is Implied Consent?
Maine considers being a licensed driver a privilege, not a right. Under the Implied Consent Law, you implicitly agree to take a chemical test when a law enforcement officer suspects you are operating under the influence. Refusing to test results in immediate suspension of your license, possibly up to six years, depending on the circumstances. Based on the officer’s testimony alone, a court can find you guilty of OUI. The court may then increase the length of your suspension or order time in jail.
Can you go to jail for a Maine OUI violation?
It is against the law to operate a vehicle if you are mentally or physically impaired by consuming alcohol or other drugs/intoxicants. The state can convict you of OUI even by attempting to operate a vehicle under these conditions. There is some likelihood you will spend some time in jail after an OUI charge. Minimum OUI penalties are listed below.
- 150-day license suspension (and an additional 275 days for transporting an under age 21 passenger)
- $500 fine
- Forty-eight hours jail time if there are aggravating factors*
* Aggravating factors are: BAC of 0.15% or higher, driving 30 mph or more over the speed limit, attempting to escape from a law enforcement officer, or having a passenger below the age of 21 years in your vehicle.
- 3-year license suspension
- $700 fine
- Seven days in jail
If your second OUI conviction occurs within ten years of the first, you cannot obtain a restricted license or register a vehicle.
- 6-year license suspension
- $1,100 fine
- 30-day jail sentence
Fourth or additional convictions:
- 8-year license suspension
- $2,100 fine
- Six months in jail
Refusal to test:
The following are minimum license suspension, jail time, and fines for refusing to take a DUI chemical test.
- First refusal: 275-day suspension, 96 hours jail time, $600 fine
- Second refusal: 3-year suspension, 12 days in jail, $900 fine
- Third refusal: 6-year suspension, 40 days in jail, $1,400 fine
- Fourth or more refusals: 8-year suspension, 6 months + 30 days jail time, $2,500 fine
The state may require you to take alcohol education classes or install an ignition interlock in your vehicle before reinstating your license.
Maine Ignition Interlock
UltraCar Insurance partners with Intoxalock IID services to assist our Maine customers with this requirement.
In addition to requiring DUI insurance Maine, the state may require you to have an ignition interlock device (IID) installed in your vehicle. The state enforces this requirement if your blood alcohol content was much higher than 0.08% or if it was your second OUI conviction.
An ignition interlock device prevents your car from starting if your BAC is above a certain level. You must first blow into a device that measures your blood alcohol concentration. If it is below a pre-set level, the car will start; it will not start if it exceeds that level. You may have to repeat this process at specific intervals.
Ignition Interlock when you don’t own a car
What if a court orders you to install an ignition interlock device as a condition for license reinstatement? When you don’t own a vehicle, this presents a problem.
One solution is to buy a car solely for that purpose. You will need an owner/owner-operator SR22 policy if you decide to do this.
Another option is to find a friend or family member willing to install the IID on their vehicle. In this case, non-owner insurance will not cover you. The vehicle owner must add you as a driver to their insurance policy, which will increase their insurance rate.
Get more information about Maine’s Ignition Interlock requirements on the Maine BMV website.
Maine BMV – OUI/DUI Information
This article was last updated on July 7th, 2023 by UltraCar Insurance