What are the Second Offense OUI License Consequences in Massachusetts?


The Registry of Motor Vehicles often issues very serious consequences for a second offense OUI in Massachusetts. This may depend on whether or not you took the breath test, see below the diagram for further explanation of how your breath test could affect the consequences of a conviction.

What are the consequences of a second offense OUI?

Prior Offense OUI is Within 10 years ago

  • Minimum 2 year license loss
  • 14 day inpatient program
  • Increased possibility of jail time.

You Refused the Breath Test

If your prior offense is within 10 years and you refused a breath test, you face a potential license suspension of 5 years, three for the refusal and 2 if you are convicted of OUI.

*In many cases to avoid these severe license consequences you will need to obtain a not guilty verdict on the OUI offense at trial*

Prior Offense OUI is Over 10 years ago

You may be eligible for what is called a second chance first offender disposition or a “Cahill disposition” in Court. If the Court imposes a sentence of the 24D Program and a 45 day license loss, you can attempt to get a hardship license with the RMV provided you get the ignition interlock device installed in your vehicle. If the judge imposes the 14 day in-patient program, the RMV will not consider the sentence as a Cahill disposition and will impose a two year license loss.

Yes, I took the breath test.
Note: The hardship eligibility would be dependent on you having completed the 14 day in patient program, installed the interlock device, had a successful record of treatment and completed the aftercare program.
  • If you took a breath test and failed you will face a 30 day license loss, after the 30 days you can get your license reinstated. You will be eligible for a hardship license after completing one year of that suspension. See side box for more details on hardship eligibility.
  • If you are convicted of an OUI offense, you face a 2 year license loss with the requirement that you install the ignition interlock on your vehicle prior to reinstating your license. You will also have to complete a 14 day in patient program as well as an aftercare program.

Learn License implications 2nd OUI
No, I refused the breath test.
  • Since the refusal itself carries a three year license loss, if you are convicted, you would face an additional two year license loss, meaning that the total potential license loss would be five years.
  • If convicted of a Second Offense OUI and you refused the breath test AND the two OUI offenses are within 10 years, you would face a total of a Five year license loss.
  • After 4 years you would be eligible for a hardship license. The only exception to these severe license consequences for a second offense is when the two offenses are more than 10 years apart, in that case you are eligible for a special disposition called the “second chance first offender” or the “Cahill disposition” where you would be eligible to be treated as a first time offender. However to get your license reinstated you would still need to install the ignition interlock device.
A not guilty verdict would avoid any license loss for an OUI and it could also result in your license being reinstated on a breath test refusal.

There is a presumption that your license would be reinstated after a not guilty verdict on an OUI charge, but it is important to note that is not always the situation.

The best way to avoid the license consequences are if you select an OUI attorney that is capable of taking your case to trial and obtaining a not guilty verdict. If you have any questions about the consequences following a second offense OUI in Massachusetts, feel free to contact me at me at either of these numbers, 781-686-5924 or 508-455-4755.