Drug and alcohol laws differ from state to state. What is legal in one state may be illegal in the next. In areas of the New England region where interstate travel is common, it is even more important to know the laws and penalties.

In this article, we will cover some of Vermont’s most important drug and alcohol laws, as well as the penalties for breaking them. These include:

  • DUI laws
  • Zero Tolerance laws
  • Cannabis laws
  • Crimes related to drugs and alcohol

DUI Laws in Vermont

In Vermont, it is illegal to drive a vehicle under the influence of alcohol or other mind-altering drugs. In fact, you don’t even have to move the vehicle to break the law. You can get a DUI in Vermont even if:

  • The vehicle does not move
  • The driver is not conscious
  • The vehicle not operable

You can get a DUI in Vermont if you have control over a vehicle and your ability to operate the vehicle is affected by drugs or alcohol. If you have drunk alcohol recently, and have a BAC (blood alcohol content) over .08%, you will automatically be given a DUI.

Zero Tolerance Laws for Vermont

Vermont, like most other states, has a zero tolerance policy for drinking and driving if you are under the age of 21. People who are under 21 years old will get a DUI if:

  • They have a BAC of .02% or higher (tested via blood, urine, or breath
  • They refuse to take a test

.02% is a very low BAC and many people will test positive for this amount of alcohol before even feeling the effects. The only way to be sure you will not get a DUI if you are under 21 in Vermont is to never drink and drive.

Is Marijuana Legal in Vermont?

Cannabis is legal to use in Vermont, but there are still restrictions. You can legally use marijuana in Vermont, but you:

  • Must be 21 or older to use marijuana
  • Cannot have more than 1 oz. of cannabis
  • Cannot have more than 2 mature plants (plus 4 immature plants)
  • Can’t sell marijuana to others
  • Cannot consume marijuana in a public place (park, sidewalk, street)
  • Can’t drive while under the influence of marijuana

Drug and Alcohol-Related Crimes in Vermont

Drug crimes in Vermont include:

  • Possessing illegal drugs
  • Making illegal drugs
  • Selling illegal drugs
  • Driving under the influence of illegal drugs

Alcohol-related crimes in Vermont include:

  • Drinking under the age of 21
  • Selling or giving alcohol to a person under 21
  • Operating a vehicle while drunk or buzzed
  • Transporting/driving with alcohol while underage
  • Having an open container of alcohol within reach while driving

Penalties for Drug or Alcohol Abuse in Vermont

If you break any of the laws above, you will face penalties. Vermont drug and alcohol law penalties include:

DUI Penalties in Vermont

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

  • 1st offense: Up to two years in prison, up to a $750 fine, 90 days driver’s license suspension.
  • 2nd offense: Up to two years in prison, up to a $1,500 fine, 18 months suspension of drivers license.
  • 3rd offense: Up to five years in prison, up to a $2,500 fine, lifetime revocation of driver’s license.
  • 4th+ offense: Up to ten years in prison, up to a $5,000 fine, lifetime drivers license revocation (if it hasn’t already been taken away).

Zero Tolerance Penalties in Vermont

If you are under 21 and you get a DUI in Vermont, you will face the following:

  • 1st offense: Mandatory alcohol information classes, a possible fine, 6-month license suspension.
  • 2nd offense: Mandatory alcohol rehab, one-year license suspension.
  • BAC over .08: If you are under 21 and you get a DUI in Vermont with a BAC of .08 or greater, you can be given the same penalties as a driver over 21. This could include jail time.

Cannabis Penalties in Vermont

Despite the fact that marijuana has been legalized in Vermont, there are still many restrictions. If you break cannabis laws in Vermont, you will face the following consequences:


  • 1-2 oz., or 3 mature plants: Up to two years in jail and/or fine of up to $2,000.
  • 2 oz. – 1 lb, or 4-5 mature plants.: Up to 3 years in prison, a fine of up to $10,000.
  • More than 1 lb or more than 12 mature plants: Up to 15 years in prison, a fine of up to $500,000.


  • Less than 0.5 oz.: 2 years jail time and/or fine of $10,000.
  • 0.5 oz. – 1 lb.: Up to 5 years in prison, $100,000 fine.
  • More than 1 lb: Up to 15 years in prison, $500,000 fine.

Get Treatment for Substance Abuse in Vermont

Drug and alcohol abuse is no joke. Call Rehab Adviser today to start your road to recovery.


  1. https://dui.drivinglaws.org/vermont.php
  2. https://statelaws.findlaw.com/vermont-law/what-are-the-vermont-dui-laws.html
  3. https://legislature.vermont.gov/statutes/section/18/084/04230
  4. http://www.vermontduilaws.net/vermontduiunder21.html

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