What Is the Legal Alcohol Limit in Colorado

What Is the Legal Alcohol Limit in Colorado?

Drinking alcohol is a common social activity for many individuals, but it is important to understand the legal limits and consequences surrounding alcohol consumption. Each state in the United States has its own specific laws regarding the legal alcohol limit, and Colorado is no exception. This article aims to shed light on the legal alcohol limit in Colorado, along with answering some frequently asked questions related to this topic.

In Colorado, the legal alcohol limit for drivers is measured by blood alcohol concentration (BAC). The BAC is determined by the amount of alcohol present in a person’s bloodstream. For individuals over the age of 21, the legal BAC limit in Colorado is 0.08%. This means that if a person’s BAC is found to be 0.08% or higher while operating a motor vehicle, they are considered legally intoxicated.


1. What happens if I am caught driving with a BAC above 0.08% in Colorado?
If you are caught driving with a BAC above 0.08% in Colorado, you can be arrested for Driving Under the Influence (DUI). The consequences may include fines, license suspension, mandatory alcohol education programs, and even jail time.

2. Is there a different alcohol limit for commercial drivers in Colorado?
Yes, there is a lower legal alcohol limit for commercial drivers in Colorado. For individuals operating a commercial vehicle, the legal BAC limit is 0.04%, which is half the limit for regular drivers.

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3. What if I am under 21 years of age?
For individuals under the age of 21, Colorado has a zero-tolerance policy. This means that any amount of alcohol detected in their system while operating a motor vehicle can result in severe penalties, including license suspension and mandatory alcohol education programs.

4. Can I refuse to take a breathalyzer or blood test in Colorado?
While you have the right to refuse a breathalyzer or blood test in Colorado, there are consequences for doing so. Refusing to take these tests can result in an automatic driver’s license suspension, and it may be used against you in court as evidence of guilt.

5. Are there enhanced penalties for repeat DUI offenders?
Yes, Colorado has enhanced penalties for repeat DUI offenders. The penalties become more severe with each subsequent offense, including longer license suspensions, higher fines, mandatory jail time, and the installation of an ignition interlock device.

6. Can I still be charged with a DUI if my BAC is below 0.08%?
Yes, you can still be charged with a DUI even if your BAC is below the legal limit of 0.08%. If the arresting officer believes that your ability to operate a motor vehicle is impaired due to alcohol consumption, they can still charge you with a DUI based on their observations and other evidence.

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7. Are there any exceptions to the legal alcohol limit in Colorado?
Colorado has a limited exception to the legal alcohol limit for individuals operating a motor vehicle while consuming alcohol for religious purposes. However, this exception is subject to strict guidelines and must be proven in court.

In conclusion, the legal alcohol limit in Colorado is 0.08% for drivers over the age of 21. It is important to be aware of this limit and the potential consequences of driving under the influence. Remember that alcohol affects individuals differently, and even a small amount can impair your ability to drive safely. It is always best to have a designated driver or use alternative transportation when consuming alcohol. Stay safe, follow the law, and make responsible choices when it comes to alcohol consumption and driving.