DUI Insurance Laws for North Dakota

Drunk driving in ND is punishable by up to five years in jail, a $5,000 fine, and at least three years of SR-22 state insurance requirements.

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Zaneta Wood, Ed.S. has over 15 years of experience in research and technical writing bringing a keen understanding of data analysis and information synthesis to reach a wide variety of audiences. She studied adult education and instructional technology at Appalachian State University as well as technical and professional communication at East Carolina University. Zaneta has prepared technical p...

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Joel Ohman is the CEO of a private equity backed digital media company. He is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™, author, angel investor, and serial entrepreneur who loves creating new things, whether books or businesses. He has also previously served as the founder and resident CFP® of a national insurance agency, Real Time Health Quotes. He has an MBA from the University of South Florida. Jo...

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Reviewed by Joel Ohman
Founder & CFP®

UPDATED: Apr 29, 2020

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Here's what you need to know...

  • Since alcohol can affect people differently, a person can be convicted of a DUI regardless of their BAC level
  • Because of the implied consent law, refusal of a BAC test can lead to an immediate license suspension
  • Anyone convicted of a DUI and looking to get their license back is required to file an SR22 form

When the North Dakota car insurance companies see drivers with DUI convictions, they classify them as high-risk drivers and insurance rates increase as a result.

According to Insurance Research Council (IRC), one in every seven drivers in the country are uninsured. The IRC reports that individuals labeled as “high-risk” have difficulty finding affordable car insurance coverage because of their motor vehicle records.

In North Dakota, car insurance companies check driving records every three years or when someone applies for a new policy.

North Dakota considers driving under the influence of alcohol to be a physical impairment and illegal.

It pays to understand DUI insurance laws and to shop around and compare insurance rates from several companies with our FREE quote comparison tool!

North Dakota Drunk Driving Laws

North Dakota uses the same blood alcohol concentration (BAC) measurement as other states to determine if a person is an impaired driver with two exceptions to the rule.

The state does not follow the national benchmark limit for measuring BAC in commercial drivers and drivers under the age of 21.

The following are considered North Dakota DUI violations:

  • All drivers with a .08 percent BAC or greater
  • Commercial Vehicle Drivers with a .04 percent BAC or greater
  • ZERO tolerance rule for drivers under 21 that register at a .02 percent or greater

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2010 North Dakota Drunk Driving Accident Statistics

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has not yet released the official numbers for how many drivers were arrested for drunk driving in 2010.

Here are some drunk driving statistics for North Dakota:

  • 52 deaths caused by a driver with a 0.01 percent BAC or higher
  • 5 deaths in accidents where a driver had a BAC between 0.01 percent and 0.07 percent
  • 47 deaths in accidents where a driver had a 0.08 percent BAC or higher

How Much is Too Much Alcohol?

What may impair one person’s ability to operate a vehicle may not impair another person’s ability to drive.

In North Dakota, drivers caught driving over the BAC limit or driving while impaired by drugs and/or alcohol can be prosecuted.

In other words, a person can be convicted of a DUI regardless of their BAC level if the prosecution can prove a physical impairment to the necessary legal extent of the law.

The evidence is built upon law enforcement’s observations of field sobriety tests and physical appearance. Once an officer becomes suspicious that a driver may be drunk, he starts to build a case against the individual prior to the traffic stop.

Here is what police officers may look for in a DUI stop:

  • Swerving or over-correcting the steering of the vehicle
  • Driving on the shoulder of the road
  • Driving too slowly
  • Being overly cautious
  • Erratic braking
  • Following too close to the vehicle in front
  • Taking narrow or wide turns
  • Using the center lines or two, opposing lanes

It’s impossible to say with certainty how many drinks its takes for one person to reach the illegal alcohol limit. Calculators and charts can help give an idea of BAC or how many drinks a person can have before they become drunk.

However, these tools don’t take into account all the variables that can affect a true BAC score.

After just one drink, these factors can render a person legally intoxicated in North Dakota. It’s best not to drink and drive. The state issues strict laws for those who do.

In addition, North Dakota prosecutes drivers sitting in parked cars while over the legal BAC limit. Not only does a DUI put one’s freedom and future in jeopardy, it jeopardizes finances as well.

North Dakota DUI Penalties & Fines

If you are found guilty of DUI in North Dakota, some of the penalties you may face are listed below.

For your first DUI conviction:

  • $250 fine
  • 91-day license suspension (BAC up to 0.17 percent) or 108-day license suspension (BAC 0.18 percent or higher)
  • May qualify for work permit after 30 days
  • Mandatory attendance in an alcohol evaluation program
  • SR-22 insurance coverage

For your third DUI conviction:

  • 60 day jail time
  • $1,000 fine
  • 2-year license suspension (BAC up to 0.17 percent) or 3-year license suspension (BAC 0.18 percent or higher)
  • Mandatory attendance in an alcohol evaluation program
  • SR-22 state insurance coverage

For your fifth DUI conviction:

  • 5 years jail time
  • Class C felony
  • $5,000 fine
  • SR-22 state insurance coverage

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North Dakota Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) DUI Laws

A person driving a commercial vehicle who fails a chemical or sobriety test and has a blood alcohol concentration of .04 percent or higher is in violation of North Dakota’s laws regarding commercial licenses.

In such cases, drivers are arrested and their licenses revoked. The driver’s CDL is revoked for 24 hours if a measurable amount of alcohol is found, but less than the 0.04 percent limit.

If hazardous materials were being transported at the time of the arrest, the driver’s CDL is revoked for life.

North Dakota Under 21 DUI Insurance Laws

Any young adult found to have a 0.02 percent to 0.07 percent BAC in North Dakota is in violation of the underage drunk driving zero tolerance law.

You could face a license suspension of 91 days to two years if your violation occurred within five years of receiving your license.

The DMV reinstates licenses for drivers under 21 who demonstrate financial responsibility by obtaining car insurance.

North Dakota’s Implied Consent Law

It’s implied that every resident of North Dakota who holds a valid driver’s license agrees to follow the state’s DUI laws and consents to a test if stopped on suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol or any combination of intoxicants.

Refusing to submit to a breath, blood, or urine test results in an immediate license suspension.

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North Dakota State DUI Insurance Requirements

North Dakota car insurance laws require any person with a DUI related offense to carry an SR22 insurance policy following the revocation period and before their driver’s license can be reinstated.

Policyholders must carry SR22 for three years. Any time a policyholder lets the SR22 insurance coverage lapse, the insurance company is required by state law to notify the DMV in which the policy holder’s driver’s license is then revoked.

The DMV cannot issue a new license until the SR22 is re-filed.

Non-owner SR22 insurance policies allow a driver to operate any motor vehicle in which they have permission.

Additionally, this policy lets those individuals who don’t own vehicles to meet the SR22 auto insurance requirements in North Dakota.

Reduce Your Car Insurance Costs & Save Money

Since SR22 auto insurance must be carried for three years, it’s helpful to compare car insurance rates before choosing a policy.

The actual price of SR22 depends on a variety of factors, including, gender, age, driving record, marital status and of course the insurance carrier who provides the coverage.

Prices can vary greatly between carriers, while other companies don’t offer SR22 insurance at all.

Take the time to obtain quotes from several companies and compare their prices with our FREE ZIP code search!

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