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What to do if charged with a DUI while visiting Tennessee

Out-of-state DUIs are different than in-state

If you are charged with a DUI while in a state other than the one listed on your license, different rules apply. In a lot of cases, you can end up getting a double penalty: punishment from the state you're in, and also from your home state.

Out-of-state punishments can include fines, jail time, and the revocation of your right to drive in that state. However, another state cannot revoke your driver's license altogether. If your right to drive in Tennessee was revoked, you could still drive in your home state when you got back, or any other state besides Tennessee.

In addition to these out-of-state penalties, you could receive penalties from your own state as well. You could face more fines and jail time, and your license could be completely revoked. DUIs from out of state can also appear on your record, so if you have been charged with a DUI before, a new DUI charge from out of state could be listed on your record as a second, third, fourth, etc. offense and you could face the associated penalties from your state.

Out-of-state DUIs are different than in-state

If you are charged with a DUI while in a state other than the one listed on your license, different rules apply. In a lot of cases, you can end up getting a double penalty: punishment from the state you're in, and also from your home state.

Out-of-state punishments can include fines, jail time, and the revocation of your right to drive in that state. However, another state cannot revoke your driver's license altogether. If your right to drive in Tennessee was revoked, you could still drive in your home state when you got back, or any other state besides Tennessee.

In addition to these out-of-state penalties, you could receive penalties from your own state as well. You could face more fines and jail time, and your license could be completely revoked. DUIs from out of state can also appear on your record, so if you have been charged with a DUI before, a new DUI charge from out of state could be listed on your record as a second, third, fourth, etc. offense and you could face the associated penalties from your state.

Tennessee does not report you to your home state

Unlike most states, Tennessee is not part of the Driver's License Compact, which is an agreement between states to inform each other of driving violations by out-of-state visitors. This means that, if you were charged with a DUI in Tennessee but are licensed in a different state, Tennessee would not report the offense to your home state. However, you would still face the initial penalties.

Your home state could also still find out about the DUI charge and punish you accordingly, even though Tennessee will not directly report you.

Avoiding out-of-state DUIs

The simplest way to avoid this scenario is to not drink and drive. Even small amounts of alcohol impair your ability to drive well. If you are planning to drink, always have a sober ride planned. Either designate a driver who will not be drinking with you, or plan for other modes of transportation, such as a taxi.

If you decide to drive after drinking and are charged with a DUI, contact a Tennessee criminal defense attorney to ask what you should do next.

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Shults Law Office

Shults Law Office
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Sevierville, TN 37862

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