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What should a pilot do after getting a OWI charge in Iowa?

On Behalf of | Sep 14, 2023 | Criminal Defense |

Many people can recall a time when they did something potentially unsafe after consuming alcohol. Whether you didn’t know how intoxicated you were or it was a one-time situation, either instance can lead to an OWI charge in Iowa. As a pilot, it’s understandable to wonder how a OWI charge can affect your career and livelihood.

OWI penalties in Iowa

After a drunk driving conviction in Iowa, what happens next depends on whether this is your first OWI. In most cases, courts are more likely to show lenience for first-time than repeat OWI offenders.

First-time OWI offenses can mean spending 48 hours up to one year in jail, although shorter sentences are more common. You may also pay up to $1,250 in fines. Repeat DUI offenders can lose their licenses permanently while facing longer jail sentences and fines of up to $9,375.

Submitting a DUI report

Professionals working in certain fields must report a DUI or OWI to a professional board. All pilots must submit reports of their convictions to the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) in Oklahoma. You don’t submit any reports to your local Flight Standards District Office (FDSO).

Preparing and submitting this report within 60 days of your conviction is crucial. Failing to complete this step in time means facing a non-reporting violation. After submitting this report, the FAA might have you undergo assessments or tests to ensure you don’t have a long-term condition like alcoholism.

There are no legal requirements that pilots must report OWIs or DUIs to their employers. However, the FAA can contact your employer after receiving your report. Things can go from bad to worse if your company believes you’re hiding an OWI.



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