In South Dakota, a blood alcohol level of .08% is considered the limit, but anyone with a level of .05% or greater can also be convicted of a DUI if the officer decides that the driver cannot drive safely due to the alcohol. Drivers under 21 can be convicted of a DUI with a blood alcohol content of .02%.
And in South Dakota, a DUI conviction can be handed down even if the individual isn't driving at the time. A driver whose blood alcohol exceeds the legal limit, who is merely sitting behind the wheel of a car with keys in his hand can be convicted of a DUI.
Refusal of a blood, urine or breath test to determine alcohol levels carries a 1-year suspension, because by owning a license you imply consent to submit to such tests. Though you can choose the qualified technician who will administer the test if you're willing to pay for the test yourself.
First offenders will lose their licenses for 30 day to 1 year. Those under 21 will lose their licenses for up to six months. Second offenders get a suspension of 1 year. Third offenders lose the ability to drive to and from work that first and second offenders can be granted. Four or more DUIs will see the license taken for a minimum of two years with no work-driving privileges. Court costs, fines, and possible jail time apply to all DUIs as well.
Points are placed on a driving record in South Dakota for breaking various traffic violation laws. DUIs, in addition to the suspensions and penalties listed above, put 10 points on a driver's record. Other high point violations include reckless driving with 8 points, and eluding or attempting to elude authorities, and drag racing, each with 6 points. Failure to yield, improper passing, and driving on the wrong side of the road garner a driver 4 points. Stop sign and stop light violations count for 3 points, and most other violations are worth 2 points.
Speeding and parking convictions do not accumulate points in South Dakota.
If a driver accumulates 15 points on his or her record within one year, or 22 or more points within 2 years, the license will be suspend for 60 days. Six-month and 1-year suspensions result after the second and third offense.
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