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Additional OWI Penalties In WI | Wisconsin OWI Attorney

5 Situations That Could Lead to Additional OWI Penalties in Wisconsin

Drunk driving is classified as an OWI (Operating While Intoxicated) in Wisconsin. However, the state  assigns a standard set of OWI penalties depending on numerous factors. Your final penalties are determined based on a combination of factors and the specific circumstances at the time of your arrest. This means that you may face any number of additional OWI penalties for driving under the influence in Wisconsin.

The Most Common Additional Charge

The single most common additional charge that occurs with an OWI is Operating with a Prohibited Alcohol Concentration (PAC). PAC charges naturally go hand-in-hand with an OWI because the vast majority of OWIs involve alcohol as the intoxicant.

5 More Ways That You Could Face Additional OWI Penalties

  1. You had a passenger who was under 16. If you receive an OWI while you had a passenger in the car who was under 16 years of age, you can face additional penalties related to child endangerment. Penalties are typically double the OWI minimum and maximum.
  2. You had exceptionally high BAC readings. OWI penalties increase by double, triple, and then quadruple the original penalty based on your blood alcohol content (BAC) at the time of the test.
  • A BAC of .17 to .199 will double your penalty.
  • A BAC of .20 to .249 will triple the original penalty.
  • A BAC of .25 or higher will quadruple the original penalty.
  1. You circumvented an Ignition Interlock Device (IID). IIDs are mandatory for repeat OWI offenders, those who refuse chemical tests during suspected OWI infraction, and first-time offenders with a BAC of 0.15 or higher. Refusing to comply with IID installation, having another person breathe into the device for you, or disconnect the device can all lead to additional OWI penalties.
  2. You are a commercial driver. Commercial drivers are held to even higher standards than non-commercial drivers. If you receive an OWI while driving a commercial vehicle, you will lose your commercial driver’s license for one year for first-time offenders. A second OWI will result in lifetime revocation of your CDL in most situations.
  3. You are under 21. Wisconsin’s legal drinking age is 21. Any driver who is pulled over for OWI and is under 21 and has any amount of alcohol in his or her system will lose their driver’s license. First-time offenders face a 90-day suspension at a minimum with additional penalties, like IIDs, common.

Build A Strong OWI Defense With Eisenberg Law Offices

The OWI attorneys at Eisenberg Law Offices have been representing drivers throughout Wisconsin since 1983. Our first step is always to ensure your rights are protected and your driving privileges are retained so you can get to school or work while your case proceeds. We examine all of the evidence against you to ensure the charges match the circumstances and you are treated fairly.

If you are facing OWI penalties in Wisconsin, contact Eisenberg Law Offices. Arrange a free case consultation by calling 608-256-8356 or emailing



Eisenberg Law has successfully represented our clients in thousands of Personal Injury, Criminal Defense and Family Law Cases during our 30-plus years in business.