Any person who is 18 or older and who is convicted of DUI while a child under 13 was a passenger in the vehicle at the time of the offense may be sentenced to a term of imprisonment of up to one year.
A person who is convicted of DUI resulting in the death of another faces the following penalties:
A person who is convicted of DUI resulting in serious bodily injury to another faces the following penalties:
In addition to other penalties that may apply under Rhode Island’s DUI laws, a commercial driver who commits a first DUI while driving a commercial vehicle will have his or her commercial driver’s license suspended for at least one year. If, however, the driver was transporting hazardous materials at the time, the suspension period is at least three years. A commercial driver who commits a second DUI while driving a commercial vehicle will have his or her commercial license revoked for life, which may or may not be reduced to a period of at least 10 years.
A person under 18 who commits a first DUI will be required to perform 10 to 60 days of community service. The juvenile’s driver’s license will also be suspended for six to 18 months. The judge may require the juvenile to attend a special course on DUI. The juvenile may also be required to pay a fine of up to $500.
A person under 18 who commits a second or subsequent DUI is subject to a mandatory driver’s license suspension until he or she reaches 21. The judge may also sentence the juvenile to the Rhode Island Training School for up to one year and/or fine the offender up to $500.
Under this law, licensed drinking establishments can be liable for injuries caused by “negligent” or “reckless” service of alcohol to a minor or to a visibly intoxicated person. Service of liquor is “negligent” if the server knows, or a reasonable person should have known, that the person being served is a minor or visibly intoxicated. In the case of a minor, service of alcohol without a request for identification is evidence of negligence. A claim for negligent service of alcohol cannot be brought by the intoxicated drinker if he or she is 21 or older. The claim can, however, be brought by a minor who was negligently served alcohol and later suffered injury because of intoxication. The claim can also be brought by a third person who was injured as a result of negligent service to a minor or to a visibly intoxicated person.
Licensed drinking establishments can also be liable for “reckless” service of liquor. Service is “reckless” if the server intentionally serves alcohol to a person when the server knows that the individual is a minor or is visibly intoxicated and the server consciously disregards an obvious and substantial risk that serving liquor to that person will cause physical harm to the drinker or to others. Evidence of “reckless” service includes active encouragement of intoxicated individuals to drink substantial amounts of alcohol, service of liquor to a person under 21 with knowledge that the person is under 21, and service of liquor to a person that is so excessive that it creates a substantial risk of death by alcohol poisoning.
Damages under Rhode Island’s Liquor Liability Act may be awarded to compensate for all injuries suffered by the victim. Additionally, punitive damages may be awarded for actions based on reckless service. Any action brought under Rhode Island’s Liquor Liability Act must be brought within three years of the date of the injury.
An adult who furnishes alcohol to a person under 21 is subject to a term of imprisonment of up to six months, a fine of $350 to $1,000, or both for the first offense. For a second violation, the offender faces a term of imprisonment of up to six months, a fine of $750 to $1,000, or both. For a third or subsequent violation, the offender faces a term of imprisonment of up to one year, a fine of $2,500, or both.
In addition to other penalties that may apply, a server at a licensed drinking establishment who serves a minor is subject to pay a fine of $250 for a first offense. For a second offense within three years, the server is subject to pay a $500 fine. For a third or subsequent violation within three years, the fine is $750.
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Note: Our attorneys are licensed to practice law in Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Ohio, Maryland, and Virginia. This information is not intended to solicit clients for matters outside of the states of Pennsylvania, Ohio, West Virginia, Maryland, and Virginia, although if you are injured in an accident, we have relationships with other personal injury attorneys and lawyers throughout the United States.