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Can You Lose Your Car After a DUI?

July 26, 2019

Car being impounded after DUI checkpoint and seeks best lawyer in Lebanon TN Hagar & Phillips Attorneys at Law to defend case.

Getting bailed out of jail after a DUI might not be the only task you have to face. Repeat offenders are at greater risk of having their cars impounded.

When do the authorities decide to impound your car after a DUI arrest, you need to know what to expect. It is important to remember that every DUI case is different with their own set of circumstances. Make sure you find an experienced and trustworthy DUI attorney, like Hagar and Phillips in Lebanon, to explain all possibilities to you to minimize surprises.

Why Would a Judge Impound My Car?

Typically, judges will impound the car of someone arrested for a DUI if it is their second or third time being arrested for driving drunk. In Tennessee, you are likely to have your car impounded after your second offense.

The reason a judge would impound your car after a DUI arrest is simple: to keep you off the road. If you are found guilty of multiple DUIs in a given time period, a judge will want to keep you off the road as a safety to yourself and other drivers. In the judge’s eyes, this is the only way to guarantee that you will not be able to put yourself in a position to drink under the influence again.

The DUI Vehicle Confiscation Process

When a judge decides that you must have your vehicle impounded, it is most likely done through a civil administration process instead of a criminal court penalty. In most cases, you will have the opportunity to appeal the decision, but your appeal will be handled by the civil court, not the criminal court that handed down the decision.

The most common way to have your car returned to use is by paying a fine, but there are some extreme cases where permanent seizure takes place.

Are There Alternatives to Vehicle Confiscation?

Impounding the car of someone guilty of a DUI is not viewed as a permanent solution or cure. Confiscation is seen as a temporary deterrent meant to lessen the chance of future incidents. In terms of long-term solutions, the use of Ignition Interlock Devices (IIDs) has proven to be more effective.

IIDs require a driver to pass a Breathalyzer test before they can start their car. If there is a detectable amount of alcohol in their system, then the car will not start and they will have to wait a certain amount of time before trying again.

Contact a Trusted Lebanon TN DUI Lawyer

If you are charged with a DUI, contact the Lebanon TN attorneys at Hagar and Phillips immediately. We are here to help you in any way possible. Our deep knowledge of the legal system puts us in a great position to serve as your attorney in this confusing time. Use our Contact Form or give us a call today to learn more at 615-784-4588.


The information you obtain at this site is not, nor is it intended to be, legal advice. You should consult an attorney for advice regarding your individual situation. We invite you to contact us and welcome your calls, letters and electronic mail. Contacting us does not create an attorney-client relationship. Please do not send any confidential information to us until such time as an attorney-client relationship has been established.