If you’re stopped by police on suspicion of drunk driving, the investigating officer is likely to ask you to take a chemical test. First things first: You should never refuse this test. Refusing the chemical test will earn you an automatic one-year license suspension, even if you are sober.
The certified chemical test is going to determine your ACE (alcohol concentration equivalent) or your BAC (blood alcohol content), and this result, in turn, will determine what you’re charged with. If your test comes back less than .08*, you may not be charged at all.
If your test indicates an ACE of at least .08 but less than .15, you can be charged with a Class C misdemeanor. This carries a maximum penalty of 60 days in jail and a $500 fine. If your test results show an ACE of .15 or greater, that’s a Class A misdemeanor, which carries a maximum penalty of 365 days in jail and a $5000 fine.
On the off-chance you have a blood-draw, the numbers work the same way—.08 to .14 is a Class C misdemeanor, and .15 and above is a Class A misdemeanor.
* grams of ethanol per 100 milliliters of blood or 210 liters of breath