If you are charged with a DWI, you will face many consequences from a conviction. And, depending on the circumstances of your DWI arrest, one of those consequences could be the impoundment of your license plates and their replacement with special registration plates, otherwise known as whiskey plates.
Whiskey plates have a unique look. Each plate is coded with two letters, followed by four numerals. The first letter is always a W, earning the plates their name.
Under Minnesota statute, individuals convicted of DWI may have their plates impounded if any of the following circumstances are true:
* Blood alcohol content (BAC) greater than .16.
* A previous DWI conviction or license revocation in the last 10 years.
* Operation of a commercial vehicle with a BAC of .04 or higher and a previous DWI conviction or license revocation in the last 10 years.
* A child under the age of 16 in the vehicle at the time of the arrest and that child is 36 months, or more, younger than the alleged offender.
* Driver's license has currently been canceled as IPS (inimical to public safety).
It is important to note that any special registration plates issued as part of a conviction are tied to the vehicle and not necessarily the driver. This means an owner who has allowed another individual to drive his car – at the time of the arrest – will be forced to place whiskey plates on his car.
If you are arrested for DWI in your own vehicle, you must obtain whiskey plates for all of your vehicles. If your vehicle was involved in the stop but you are not the individual responsible, the plates only apply to the vehicle in question.
License plate impoundments last for one year but the term may be extended if the driver does not have a valid driver's license. If your vehicle was involved in the incident, but you were not the driver, you can file a request for administrative review of license plate impoundment in an attempt to have the whiskey plates removed from your vehicle.
If you are facing license plate impoundment, you need experienced legal counsel. Contact Attorney Eric J. Olson for vigorous defense and unrivaled results.
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