Are the Penalties in Arizona Very Harsh for DUI Offenders?

Interviewer: Around Arizona, there are a few counties where it seems pretty popular for the legislature to say if you’re arrested for DUI, you can expect to receive the maximum penalties. What are they talking about specifically in regards to DUI? Is it reasonable to surmise that some of the people arrested should expect to have the “book thrown at them” and they’re going to be sentenced to the max on all charges?

Brian: I’ve never had a client who has done the max on anything. Technically the penalties could refer to jail time, or could refer to prison time, and they could refer to the amount of fines and fees.

Arizona’s Penalties for Misdemeanor, Aggravated and Felony DUI Charges

On any misdemeanor DUI, the maximum sentence is 6 months in jail. On any class 6 aggravated DUI, the maximum sentence for a first time offender is 2 years. On any aggravated DUI charged as a class 4-felony, the maximum sentence is 3.75 years.

For misdemeanors, the maximum fine is $2,500 plus an 83% surcharge. On any felony, the maximum fine is $150,000 plus an 83% surcharge. I have never had any of my clients receive anywhere close to the maximum on anything.

Misdemeanor DUIs can also have a maximum amount of probation of 5 years, and an aggravated DUI can have a maximum probation term of 10 years. I’m not sure if I ever have had a client that was sentenced to the maximum amount of probation. As far as hearing, “Expect the max;” I believe that is a scare tactic, and the statement is especially untrue when I’m representing someone.

Most of the time I successfully get the minimum sentence for my clients. Now, that is only in cases where I am not able to negotiate a more beneficial plea agreement other than the minimum sentence on the charge that they are originally charged with. “Expect the max” is kind of a fallacy.

By Brian Douglas Sloan

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Why Attorney Brian Douglas Sloan?
Phoenix DUI Lawyer

Why Attorney Brian Douglas Sloan?


18+ Years SOLELY Focused on DUI Defense


4,100+ DUIs Successfully Defended

Top Accolades

  • Only DUI "Power Lawyer" in the Nation Featured in USA Today, 2022

  • Top 10 in Arizona

Top 1%

Top One Percent in the Nation

Superb 10/10

4.9 / 5.0


“I am one of only a handful of Phoenix DUI Lawyers that focuses solely on DUI Defense representation.”

I have spent my entire career focused on DUI Defense representation, having personally defended more than 4,100+ DUI clients in the past 18+ years.

If you’re looking for a divorce attorney, tax attorney, or civil attorney, then I can comfortably say: "I’m not the one for you".

Coming up with traditional, as well as outside-the-box motions and defenses for my clients, often with good results, is the hallmark of my practice.

Lawyers that say they are "aggressive", or "will fight for you", are a dime a dozen. They use these phrases because that is what they think people want to hear. The truth of the matter is, being "aggressive" rarely gets the client anywhere in these court systems. Being "aggressive" isn’t the same as being good, and is often used to put on a show for a client to hide the fact that they aren’t doing anything meaningful for the client.

The same is true for the lawyers that claim to do DUI Defense... and Criminal Cases..., and Accident cases..., and Divorces. A Jack-of-all-Trades is a master of none. By handling all different sorts of cases, they take away from their ability to truly focus on DUIs, and keep up to date on the latest changes in DUI Defense Representation.

What I offer is intelligent, quality DUI Defense, at an exceptional price.

I am one of only a handful of Arizona DUI Lawyers that focuses solely on DUI Defense representation.

I have not only taught other lawyers how to do DUI Defense Representation at statewide seminars, but I produce DUI Legal Guides used by defense lawyers across Arizona.

I am one of the most award-winning DUI Defense Lawyers in Arizona; have been recognized nationally, including in a 2022 issue of USA Today; and there are only a few lawyers in Arizona who have personally defended more DUI cases than I have. I am also one of the most reasonably-priced DUI Lawyers, as I pride myself on charging a Flat Rate only for the legal services you need, and not for the legal services you don’t.

I am also the lawyer who people call once they realize that their original lawyer screwed something up, gave them false hope or false promises, or simply just took their money and didn’t do much on the case. You would be surprised at how often this happens.

Save yourself the trouble of hiring the wrong lawyer, and hire the right DUI Defense Lawyer from the start.

You can reach me on my personal cell phone: 480-720-7839.

Let me know if you have any questions!

Brian Douglas Sloan

DUI Attorney

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Email address:
2 N. Central Ave Suite 1929
Phoenix, AZ 85004