Montana SR22 Insurance

Montana SR22 Insurance & Filing Information

SR22 insurance is a specific liability insurance that many states require of drunk drivers. Montana is not one of these states.

There is no SR22 insurance requirement in Montana!

However, if you live in Montana, and you get a DUI (or related offense) in another state, that state may require you to buy SR22 insurance. Similarly, if you get a DUI in Montana, and you then move to another state, your new state may require you to file proof of SR22 insurance.

How to Get Your Montana Driver’s License Back after a DUI

To get your Montana driver’s license reinstated after a DUI, you will need to:

  • Pay a reinstatement fee of $200.
  • Attend an ACT Program.
  • Attend alcohol treatment (if recommended).
  • Possibly install an ignition interlock device in your vehicle.

Montana Ignition Interlock Law

If you are convicted of a DUI in Montana, you may be required to install an ignition interlock device (IID) in your vehicle(s). If this is your second or subsequent offense, and you are issued a probationary license, you will be required to install an IID in your vehicle(s). If this is your fourth or subsequent offense, you will be required to install an IID as a condition of probation.

The costs of the ignition interlock program vary slightly by vendor, but there are set-up fees and a monthly bill of about $75.

Montana Approved IID Vendors:
Mountain Peaks, Inc. 866-453-6784
Consumer Safety Technology, Inc. 877-777-5020
Big Sky Ignition Interlock 406-599-5362
DMB Interlock & Safety Services, Inc. 406-698-7297
Smart Start, Inc. 800-880-3394

For More Information:

Still have questions? Contact the Montana Motor Vehicle Division directly at 406-444-3933

Montana DUI First Offense

In Montana, it is illegal to drive or be in actual physical control of a vehicle while under the influence of alcohol. Under Montana law, a person can be charged with a DUI (Driving Under the Influence) if his or her blood alcohol content (BAC) is 0.04 to 0.08 if there is evidence that alcohol affected his or her driving. If a person is caught with a BAC of 0.08, he or she will be charged automatically, regardless of how he or she was driving.

Montana has an implied consent law, which means that by driving in Montana, you are agreeing to submit to a chemical alcohol test if asked to do so. To refuse a breath or blood alcohol test is a criminal offense, and your driver’s license must be immediately seized.

If you have been charged with a DUI in Montana, the first thing you will want to consider is hiring an experienced DUI attorney. All of our DUI lawyers offer a free consultation and you will quickly have a clearer picture of Montana law as it applies to your unique case.

Montana First Offense DUI Penalties:

“First offense” means your first DUI anywhere, in any state. So, if you have a DUI in another state, expect that to count against you in Montana.

If you are convicted of a DUI, and it is your first offense, you are required to spend at least 24 consecutive hours, but not more than 6 months, in county jail. If the court finds you financially able, you will also be charged for the cost of imprisonment.

However, jail time may be suspended for one year if you complete an Assessment Course Treatment (ACT) program approved by the Department of Public Health and Human Services. For a list of approved ACT programs, contact Addictive and Mental Disorders Division.

DUI first offenders have to pay a fine from $300 to $1,000.

DUI penalties, both fines and jail time, may be doubled if you had a child under the age of 16 in the car with you at the time of your arrest.

A first offense DUI results in a 6 month suspension of driving privileges. While driver’s license suspensions are handled by Driver Control, not the court, the judge may still recommend a restricted probationary driver’s license, which is good for essential driving only. If the judge does not recommend a probationary driver’s license, you will not be able to drive until the 6 month suspension period is over.

Before your driver’s license is reinstated you will have to complete an SR22 filing with the DMV before they will issue you your new license.

Montana DUI Laws & Penalties

 If you are pulled over for suspicion of a Montana DUI, the officer will ask you to submit to a Preliminary Alcohol Screening test, (commonly referred to as a PAS test). In most other states this test is not mandatory and refusing to submit to the PAS test is not a punishable offense, but in Montana it is. According to the DUI laws of the state of Montana, specifically vehicle code § 61-8-409 there is implied consent (meaning you are assumed to give your consent) to take this test if the officer asks you.

Montana DUI Vehicle Code § 61-8-409:

A person who operates or is in actual physical control of a vehicle upon ways of this state open to the public is considered to have given consent to a preliminary alcohol screening test of the person’s breath, for the purpose of estimating the person’s alcohol concentration, upon the request of a peace officer who has a particularized suspicion that the person was driving or in actual physical control of a vehicle upon ways of this state open to the public while under the influence of alcohol or in violation of 61-8-410.

The person’s obligation to submit to a test under 61-8-402 is not satisfied by the person submitting to a preliminary alcohol screening test pursuant to this section.

The peace officer shall inform the person of the right to refuse the test and that the refusal to submit to the preliminary alcohol screening test will result in the suspension for up to 1 year of that person’s driver’s license.

Reference: Montana DUI Vehicle Code

Montana Jail Time and Fines For DUI

If you are convicted of a Montana DUI, you are facing at least 24 hours in jail. You could spend up to 60 days in jail depending on your case. You will also pay between $100 and $500 in fines, on top of the cost of your court case and incarceration.

Montana DUI Suspension and Treatment

A Montana DUI conviction means you will have your driver’s license suspended for up to six months. You will also have to attend a treatment program. Often the court will decide to use the treatment program in place of some of your time in jail. If your trial results in probation, you could be allowed to drive with a limited license. This allows you to still work and go to school.

Here is a summary of the penalties you face for a Montana DUI

First Offense Montana DUI

  • 1 day to 6 months jail time
  • $300 to $1,000 in fines
  • Drivers license suspension for 6 months

Second Offense Montana DUI

  • 7 days to 6 months in jail
  • Up to $1,000 in fines
  • Drivers license suspension for 1 year

Third Offense Montana DUI

  • 1 month to 1 year in jail
  • Up to $1,000 in fines
  • Drivers license suspension for 1 year

Fourth Offense Montana DUI

  • 13 months in program or facility
  • Up to $10,000 in fines
  • Drivers license suspension for 5 years
  • Not allowed to have any alcohol or be in bars

Montana BAC Assumptions

  • BAC levels of .001 to .04 are not considered to be under the influence
  • BAC levels of .041 to .079 are not considered to be under the influence, but are admissible in court.
  • BAC levels of .08 or greater are considered to be under the influence

Montana Implied Consent Laws

  • Chemical testing is allowed. Blood, breath or urine test as selected by the officer.
  • In Montana the officer is not required to advise the defendant of the penalties they may face for test refusal.
  • Test refusal results in an immediate license seizure and a 6 month to 1 year license suspension. Test refusal is admissible in court.

Chemical Testing

  • Chemical tests are admissible in court if they are performed by a person with a valid permit that is in accordance with the Department of Justice.
  • Blood draws for police testing must be administered by a licensed physician, registered nurse or other qualified person.
  • The defendant has the right to have an independent chemical test done by a qualified person of their choosing. The costs of an independent test are the defendant’s responsibility.
  • Test results must be made available to the defendant and their Montana DUI attorney upon request.

Your Montana DUI conviction will result in more severe punishments if you are in an accident resulting in any type of injury and/or death. Also, if you drive drunk with a child that is under the age of sixteen it is considered endangering the life of a child and there are more severe consequences.

Montana SR22 Insurance

SR22 insurance is required in the state of Montana after a DUI. SR22 insurance is a type of high risk auto insurance policy that the Montana Department of Motor Vehicles requires DUI offenders to carry for a period of 3 years from the date your drivers license is reinstated.