The beaches and coastal towns of South Carolina experience a wave of tourism in the springtime, comprised of tourists on spring break or those just looking for a break from cooler weather. However, the vacation can come to a screeching halt after an arrest for driving under the influence.

Getting a DUI under any circumstances can be stressful and devastating. However, getting a DUI while out of state can add an additional layer of complications into the mix. Will you have to stay in South Carolina? How will this affect your driver’s license?

Steps to immediately take after getting a DUI

After receiving an out-of-state DUI, it may be tempting to assume that the offense will not follow you back home. However, the South Carolina police will likely notify your home state’s law enforcement officers shortly after the offense.

Following an arrest, here are several steps to take:

  • Refrain from driving immediately. Your driver’s license will be automatically suspended in both South Carolina and your home state.
  • Do not ignore key deadlines. You will receive a notice to schedule an administrative hearing within days to contest the suspension of your driver’s license.
  • Comply with law enforcement officials in both states. You may face charges in both South Carolina and your home state.
  • Attend your court date. Working with a local attorney can help you stay organized on which court dates you must be present for.

While attending hearings or court dates out of state can be both inconvenient and costly, doing so could help to retain your license and avoid more serious, long-lasting consequences.

What penalties do you face in South Carolina?

Penalties can vary based on your level of intoxication, whether you consented to or refused blood or breath tests, whether this is your first or subsequent offense and more. For first-time offenders, penalties can include jail time, fines up to $1,000 and the revocation of your driver’s license for potentially six months or more.

Lastly, keep in mind that convictions for DUI offenses extend beyond state lines. If you receive a conviction for a DUI in South Carolina, this does not mean you have a clear criminal record in other states. Any subsequent offense can result in additional, more profound consequences.