North Dakota’s drug and alcohol laws are unique to this state. If you are going to be spending time in North Dakota, it’s a good idea to be informed about these laws.

Some of the most important categories of drug and alcohol laws are:

  • DUI laws
  • Zero tolerance laws
  • Marijuana laws
  • Sale, possession, and transport drug and alcohol crimes

In this article, we will cover everything you need to know about these kinds of law in North Dakota.

DUI Laws in North Dakota

DUI stands for ‘driving under the influence’. All 50 states have their own DUI laws. In North Dakota, the law states that it is illegal to be in control of a vehicle if:

  • You have a blood alcohol content (BAC) of .08% or higher. (.04% if you are a commercial driver)
  • You are under the influence of alcohol or any controlled substance.

North Dakota’s definition of “controlling a vehicle” does not require that vehicle to be moving, running, or even for the driver to be conscious. Simply put, you cannot get behind the wheel of a car if you are under the influence of alcohol or any drug in North Dakota.

If you do, you will face DUI charges and penalties.

Zero Tolerance Laws for North Dakota

Like many other states, North Dakota has adopted a ‘zero tolerance’ policy when it comes to drinking and driving for people under the age of 21.

Since drinking is illegal if you are under 21 in North Dakota, the state has decided to give people this age a DUI if they drink even a small amount and drive.

If you are under 21, you can get a DUI even if you only have a BAC of .02%. For most people, that BAC is reached before finishing one drink. You are likely to have a BAC of .02% or higher before you even feel the effects of alcohol.

To avoid getting a DUI as a minor in ND, do not drink and drive.

Is Marijuana Legal in North Dakota?

Although many states have recently legalized pot, North Dakota is not one of them. Like other politically conservative states, ND is not likely to legalize marijuana in the next few years.

However, in 2016, a law was passed to make medical marijuana legal in ND for specific medical conditions. These conditions include:

  • Cancer
  • AIDS
  • Hepatitis C
  • ALS
  • Epilepsy
  • Glaucoma

Unless you have one of these conditions and a doctor has given you a certificate for medical use, you can’t legally get marijuana in North Dakota.

Drug and Alcohol-Related Crimes in North Dakota

In North Dakota, there are several crimes related to drugs and alcohol.

Drug crimes in North Dakota include:

  • Selling illegal drugs.
  • Making or synthesizing illegal drugs.
  • Possessing or transporting illegal drugs.
  • Driving under the influence of drugs.

Alcohol-related crimes in North Dakota include:

  • Driving under the influence of alcohol.
  • Attempting to buy alcohol as a minor.
  • Selling alcohol to a minor.
  • Driving with an open container of alcohol in the car.

Penalties for Drug or Alcohol Abuse in North Dakota

If you break any of the laws mentioned above, or any other laws related to drugs and alcohol in North Dakota, you will face penalties. These might include fines, jail time, community service, and other consequences.

DUI Penalties in ND

If you are over the age of 21 and you get a DUI in ND, you will face the following consequences:

  • 1st offense: Up to 30 days in jail, $500 to $1500 in fines.
  • 2nd offense: 10 to 30 days in jail, $1500 fine.
  • 3rd offense: 120 to 360 days in jail, $2,000 to $3,000 in fines.

There are also greater penalties in North Dakota for DUIs that involve a BAC of .16% or higher. You are also likely to face license suspensions in addition to the penalties above.

Zero Tolerance Penalties in ND

If you are under the age of 21 and you get a DUI in North Dakota, you will face different penalties than the ones listed above. Remember that the judge has the final say on these penalties, and they may vary depending on the situation.

Penalties for DUI under the age of 21 in ND are:

  • 1st offense: License revoked 91 days.
  • 2nd offense: License revoked 1 year.
  • 3rd offense: License revoked 2 years.

The penalties above come with a major caveat: If you are under 21 and you drive with a BAC of .08% or higher, you will face the same penalties as someone over 21 would for the same offense.

Cannabis Penalties in ND

The penalties for marijuana crimes in ND vary greatly depending on the amount of pot involved in the crime, and whether you have prior offenses.

The penalties for cannabis crimes in ND are outlined below:

  • Possession: 30 days – 10 years in jail and/or $1,000 – $10,000 in fines, depending on the amount.
  • Sale: 10 – 20 years in jail and/or $10,000 fine depending on amount.

Get Treatment for Drug and Alcohol Abuse in North Dakota

If you are curious about the drug and alcohol laws in North Dakota, it could be an indicator that you need to get help for substance abuse. If you or someone you love is suffering from addiction, there are several options available to you.

Call Rehab Adviser today to discuss your options and begin the path towards a better life.



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