In 2017, Governor Kasich signed Bill 388, or “Annie’s Law,” which had the effect of significantly changing Ohio policies regarding driving under the influence of alcohol. One of the most significant changes brought about by this new law was to Ohio’s OVI Lookback Period. If you are a driver who has been convicted of operating a vehicle while intoxicated (OVI) in Ohio, it is imperative that you understand Annie’s Law and Ohio’s OVI lookback period.
A lookback period refers to the length of time that a prior OVI conviction or guilty plea will be considered as one of your sentencing factors for a new OVI offense. Any prior conviction that occurs within the lookback time period will be viewed by a court of law as a prior OVI offense, which will increase the severity of penalties imposed upon conviction. If an OVI has occurred outside of this Ohio’s OVI lookback period, it will not be counted as a previous offense.
Under Ohio’s old lookback law, a driver who had previously been convicted of an OVI within a six-year window of a prior OVI could face a maximum license suspension of five years. Under the old law, a third OVI conviction in six years would result in a maximum license suspension of 10 years.
Annie’s Law increased the length of Ohio’s OVI lookback period, used by courts when sentencing from six to 10 years. It also increased the penalties that a driver will face if convicted of multiple OVIs. It is important to recognize that the lookback window was extended for not just OVI offenses, but also OVI-related offenses. Annie’s law increases the maximum suspension of a driver’s license for a second OVI from seven years to 10 years, and for a third OVI from 10 years to 12 years.
If you are charged with OVI in Ohio, it can be challenging to understand all of the relevant laws and what your potential defenses might be. Even if a previous OVI conviction falls within the new lookback period, an experienced OVI lawyer might be able to help decrease the penalties that you end up facing. If you have been charged with OVI in Ohio, schedule an initial free consultation with one of our OVI lawyers today to discuss your possible defenses.