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How Will An Out-Of-State DUI Affect Me In Arizona?

The interesting thing about Arizona law is that it has to follow a very specific set of rules before a DUI or DWI from another state can be used as a “prior DUI conviction” in Arizona; in order for an out-of-state DUI, or “foreign DUI,” to be used against someone for enhancement purposes to make an Arizona DUI a second-time offense, the law they were convicted under must match Arizona DUI laws. They don’t necessarily care about the facts about what happened in the other state; they only care about the law under which you were convicted.

In Arizona, we review the law the person was convicted under, to see if there is any possibility that a conviction in another state will not match a conviction in Arizona, which means the state can’t use that prior DUI or DWI conviction for enhancement purposes.  For example, I recently looked up the laws in New Hampshire, where they have bundled quite a few things into their DUI laws. In that case, the person was convicted under a statute that included not just DUI but attempted DUI and boating DUI and since Arizona’s statute doesn’t include boating DUI, we were able to explain to the court that my client theoretically could have been convicted of a boating DUI even though they were not, and because you can only look at the statute and not at the facts, Arizona couldn’t use it.

It takes an attorney who knows what they are looking for and who doesn’t simply look at the documents saying that a client has a prior DUI from a different state and leave it at that; it takes research and the ability to figure out the elements of the offense and knowing exactly what they pled guilty to in a different state and determining whether there is any possible way to plead guilty to a DUI in another state that can’t be considered a prior DUI conviction in the State of Arizona.

Are The Rules and Penalties for a DUI the Same in Arizona as Other States?

Every state is different, but Arizona tends to be harsher on most fronts when it comes to a DUI conviction, except in the area of a license suspension, for which Arizona is pretty good. The state will normally suspend a person for 90 days if they are convicted of a first-time offense and of those 90 days, the first 30 is no driving at all, while the next 60 days, they can be eligible for a restricted license to drive to and from home to work, school and counseling.  In other states I have seen, they will suspend someone’s license anywhere from three months to two years, and some states have the ability to revoke someone’s license for life; I have yet to see anything like that in Arizona.

On the other hand, Arizona has what may be some of the harshest civil monetary penalties out there, in the form of fines and fees.  For a first-time regular DUI, a person will pay just about $1,500 minimum in fines and fees, plus at least one day in jail is required, which is not the case in many states. Therefore, Arizona is harsher than most other states, except when it comes to license suspension.

What Happens on An Out-of-state Prescription Medication DUI?

Prescription DUI seems to be a growing offense here in Arizona, as I imagine it is everywhere else. Some laws in other states appear to be written in a way in which it doesn’t even have to be prescription medications; it can be over-the-counter medications that can impair someone and lead to a DUI in a different state. Our laws address some over-the-counter medications but not all; it all depends on how the state legislatures wrote the law and how they changed it over time and DUI laws in Arizona are constantly being adjusted and manipulated.

The same is true in other states, which is why it’s important that the attorney, when researching an out-of-state prior DUI conviction, look at the law as it was written at the time the person was arrested, not just how it is modern day version but at the time that they were arrested and it is something that is required for the court to examine, not the law as it is written today but as it was written at the time that the person was arrested or convicted.

For more information on Out-of-state DUI in Arizona, a free initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you’re seeking by calling 480-900-0384 today.

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Brian Douglas Sloan


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Best DUI Lawyer in Phoenix

Why DUI Attorney Brian Douglas Sloan?


19+ Years SOLELY Focused on DUI Defense


4,200+ 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


brian sloan on the cover of attorney at law magazine

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

I have spent my entire career SOLELY focused on Arizona DUI Defense Representation, having personally defended more than 4,400 Driving Under the Influence (DUI) clients in the past 19+ years.

If you’re looking for a Divorce Attorney, Tax Attorney, Civil Attorney, etc., I can comfortably say, "I’m not the one for you." I ONLY defend DUI cases in most of Maricopa County, Arizona.

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 it is a proven advertising phrase. Being "aggressive" isn’t the same as being good, and is often used to put on a show to hide the fact that they aren’t doing anything meaningful for the client.

The same is true for the Lawyers claiming to do DUI Defense, and Criminal Cases, and Accident Cases, and Divorces, etc. A Jack-of-all-Trades is a master of none! By handling all 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. Unlike many other law firms, if you hire The Law Offices of Brian D. Sloan, you actually get me representing you, doing all the work, and working the case. You aren’t hiring one guy with all the experience, but getting the underling with very little knowledge or experience.

I work seven days a week on my client’s cases, and spend hours laying all my thoughts out for my clients in writing, so they can understand their options, and my recommendations. No other DUI Lawyer in the state does this. I try to do what I can to go above-and-beyond for my clients. I hate when the businesses I deal with nickel-and-dime me with hidden costs, and I take pride in not doing that to my clients.

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

I am one of Arizona's most award-winning DUI Defense Lawyers, as well as being recognized nationally. I was the only DUI Defense Lawyer in the United States named a "Power Lawyer" in a 2022 issue of USA Today

There are no other private Lawyers in Arizona that have personally defended more DUI cases than I have. And as a bonus, I offer a very reasonable flat rate for my legal services, with a payment plan, and without any hidden charges. This guarantees that I offer some of the most competitive rates among all Arizona DUI Attorneys, while being a well-documented and preeminent leader in the field of DUI Defense Representation.

Over the years, countless people have come to me after discovering that their first lawyer made a mistake, gave them false hope or false promises, or simply took their money and didn't do much to advance their case. And you would be surprised at how often this happens.

So, instead of wasting time and money on the wrong DUI Defense Attorney, do yourself a favor and get the proven and well-recognized best DUI Lawyer in Phoenix and the surrounding areas of Maricopa County.

You can reach me on my personal cell phone at 480-720-7839 for a Free ‘In Depth’ Consultation.

I personally defend DUI cases in urban Maricopa County City, Town, and Justice Courts, including:

Ahwatukee / Agua Fria / Arcadia Biltmore / Avondale / Buckeye / Chandler / Country Meadows / Desert Ridge / Dreamy Draw / Downtown / East Mesa / El Centro / Encanto / Gilbert / Glendale / Goodyear / Guadalupe / Highland / Kyrene / Litchfield Park / Maryvale / McDowell Mountain / Mesa / Moon Valley / North Mesa / Peoria / Phoenix / Queen Creek / San Marcos / San Tan / South Mountain / Scottsdale / Tempe / University Lakes / West McDowell / West Mesa / White Tank

For any other Courts in the State of Arizona, including Felony cases, I would recommend my associates on The Arizona DUI Team, whom I work closely with, but I am not the one personally representing the client.

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Brian Douglas Sloan

DUI Attorney

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