First OWI offense

​(en español)

Operating a vehicle while under the influence of alcohol or drugs jeopardizes the safety of everyone who shares the road. This page is intended to assist those who have been charged with their first OWI offense navigate the paperwork and processes involved.

Receive documents from the officer:

1) Possible tickets (citations):

  • The “A ticket" – You are being charged with Operating While Intoxicated (OWI) - 346.63(1)(a) Wis. Stat. and/or 346.63(1)(am) Wis. Stat.
  • The “B ticket" – You are being charged with operating with a Prohibited Alcohol Concentration (PAC) 346.63(1)(b) Wis. Stat.
    • The officer will request that you submit a sample of blood, breath, or urine for chemical testing of your Blood Alcohol Concentration.
    • Refusal to provide a sample when requested may result in a search warrant issued for a blood draw and will result in issuance of a "Notice of Intent to Revoke" under the Implied Consent (IC) law 343.305(9) Wis. Stat.
  • The “AM “ ticket—You are being charged with a restricted controlled substance being found in your blood (346.63(1)(am) Wis. Stat.)

2) Notice of Intent to Suspend

  • You should receive this notice in person at the traffic stop or by mail after the blood test results are received by the law enforcement agency.
  • This document informs you that 30 days from the notice date your operating privilege will be administratively suspended (343.305(7)) Wis. Stat.) which means you will not legally be allowed to drive.
  • It is issued along with the Administrative Review Request form which provides information regarding how to request an Administrative Review Hearing.

3) Notice of Intent to Revoke if you refused the chemical test during your initial traffic stop

  • You will be issued this notice in person and it is also submitted to the court.
  • This document informs you that 30 days from the notice date, your operating privilege will be revoked for 1 year (first refusal).
  • The notice will contain the information to contact the court in writing for a hearing. Note: Written request to the court must be received within 10 days of the notice date.

  • If you are operating a commercial motor vehicle with any detectible amount of alcohol in your system, you may be issued an Out of Service order. This means you stop where you are and may not drive a commercial motor vehicle for 24 hours.
  • If the OWI and/or PAC violation was committed while operating a commercial motor vehicle or was committed by a holder of a commercial driver license (CDL) after September 30, 2005, the following sanctions apply in addition to the penalties listed above:
    • a 1-year CDL disqualification. You will not be able to drive a commercial motor vehicle.
    • a 3-year CDL disqualification if the offense occurred while transporting Hazardous Materials
  • Consequences of a second OWI offense is lifetime disqualification.

You may appear in court to be judged on the violation

  • OWI citation (“A ticket") and the PAC citation (“B ticket") or Drug citation (“AM ticket”)
  • The court may take one of the following actions:
    • Find you Not Guilty (Dismiss the charge)
    • Convict you under the OWI, and/or PAC/Drug violation (“A ticket" and/or “AM”/“B ticket")

  • Your operating privilege will be revoked
  • You will be required to submit to an assessment of your alcohol and /or drug use and complete an education or treatment program, called the Driver Safety Plan (DSP).
  • If the measured Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) was at or above 0.15, or if you refused a chemical test, you will be restricted to operation of a vehicle equipped with an Ignition Interlock Device (IID)
    • You will have specific penalties (See OWI Penalty chart below)

IMPORTANT: The driver license IID restriction time period begins upon conviction and continues until one year after you have been issued an occupational license or reinstated your regular license. See IID page

If convicted of OWI and/or PAC and you hold an Occupational license issued under the BAC suspension, DMV will re-issue a new occupational license for the duration of your revocation if:

  • There are no other operating privilege withdrawals, AND
  • You meet the requirements of the IID restriction, if needed, AND
  • Your court ordered revocation is more than 6 months

Envelope Email Wisconsin DMV email service

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