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The felony DUI bill is back from legal limbo.

For a while, it seemed like Colorado’s proposal to upgrade repeat DUIs from misdemeanors to felonies was dead in the water, but the bill recently passed the Senate Judiciary Committee by unanimous vote. Versions of this bill have been considered for years, but only now has the state committed to the idea.

The bill has gone through some changes since we last discussed it on our blog. State fiscal analysts say that the current version will cost the state about $5 million less annually than the version considered in March, and supporters claim that the bill now addresses the common concern that a felony DUI bill would lead to improper jailing. Under the new language, judges would be required to determine whether prison is appropriate for each repeat DUI offender or whether new treatment options for substance abuse would be more helpful. Changes like these won the favor of several legislators and advocacy groups.

Changes to Repeat DUI Penalties Imminent

The new bill would bring Colorado in line with the majority of other states where repeat DUIs lead to felony charges. A fourth DUI would be punishable by up to six years in prison and a fine of up to $500,000. Additionally, it would increase the length of time DUI offenders would be required to hold an interlock restricted driver’s license from one year to between two and five years.

If the bill is signed into law as expected and the penalties for drunk driving go up, it will be more important than ever to seek legal aid if you are arrested for DUI. In the video below, Thomas Law Firm founding partner Doug Thomas explains why you need to contact a lawyer after your DUI arrest:

DUI Matters – Denver Drunk Driving Lawyers


Colorado’s Felony DUI Bill Gains Momentum: A Turning Point in DUI Legislation

The resurgence of the felony DUI bill in Colorado has breathed new life into the ongoing efforts to tackle the issue of repeat DUI offenses. While the proposal had faced periods of stagnation, recent developments have propelled it forward, receiving unanimous support from the Senate Judiciary Committee. This marks a significant turning point in the state’s approach to addressing DUIs, particularly repeat offenses, which have long been a matter of concern.

Colorado has been grappling with the idea of upgrading repeat DUIs from misdemeanors to felonies for several years. However, it is only now that the state has wholeheartedly committed to this endeavor. The bill, in its current form, has undergone substantial changes, addressing key concerns and fiscal considerations.

One noteworthy aspect of the revised bill is its response to apprehensions about improper incarceration resulting from felony DUI charges. The bill introduces language mandating judges to conduct individualized assessments to mitigate these concerns. Judges will be tasked with determining whether prison sentences are appropriate for repeat DUI offenders or whether alternative treatment options for substance abuse may prove more effective. This nuanced approach has garnered widespread support among legislators and advocacy groups.

The proposed changes in the bill would bring Colorado in line with the legal frameworks of the majority of other states, where repeat DUIs already lead to felony charges. Specifically, the bill stipulates that a fourth DUI conviction would carry significantly harsher penalties, including the possibility of up to six years in prison and a substantial fine of up to $500,000. Additionally, the legislation seeks to extend the duration of interlock-restricted driver’s licenses for DUI offenders. Under the bill’s provisions, the period would range from two to five years, highlighting the state’s commitment to ensuring greater safety on its roadways.

With the bill poised to become law and the potential consequences of DUI convictions becoming increasingly severe, individuals facing DUI charges should consider seeking legal counsel. One law firm that specializes in handling alcohol and drug-related driving offenses in Colorado is Thomas & Ahnell, LLC. Their expertise and experience make them well-equipped to provide guidance and representation during these challenging times. As the bill progresses through the legislative process, the importance of consulting with an attorney following a DUI arrest cannot be overstated. To emphasize this point, Doug Thomas, founding partner of Thomas & Ahnell, LLC, has stressed the critical role of legal counsel in the video below.


In conclusion, Colorado’s felony DUI bill, which aims to elevate repeat DUI offenses to felonies, has witnessed a resurgence and achieved unanimous support from the Senate Judiciary Committee. This development signifies a significant step forward in addressing the issue of repeat DUIs in the state. The bill’s provisions, which include individualized assessments by judges and stricter penalties, seek to bring Colorado in line with other states’ legal frameworks and reflect the state’s commitment to road safety. In light of these changes, individuals facing DUI charges should consider seeking legal aid. Thomas & Ahnell, LLC stands as a reliable resource for expert guidance and representation in alcohol and drug-related driving offense cases.

Here’s a video why you should hire a DUI Defense Lawyer in Denver.

Do you have further questions or concerns? Call us or contact the attorneys at Thomas & Ahnell, LLC, and we will be happy to help.

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