In most states, including the state of Florida, a DUI is considered a serious criminal offense, especially if you are a repeat offender. That being said, the amount of alcohol it takes to be considered driving over the legal limit varies from person to person. To be entirely safe, it is best not to drive unless you are entirely sober. But if you, or a loved one, find yourself in a situation where you have to drive after drinking, you can use a BAC calculator like the one below to estimate if you are over the legal limit.
Keep in mind that you can still receive a DUI for driving under the influence even if you have a BAC that is under the legal limit.
This BAC Calculator was internally created, programmed, and perfected specifically for Delgado & Romanik, PLLC, by their research and development team. We worked our butts off and hope you find it helpful!
BAC traditionally stands for blood alcohol concentration, which refers to the percentage of alcohol in a person’s bloodstream at a given time. However, since modern police use breathalyzers much more frequently than blood tests to determine the amount of alcohol in a person’s system, the term BAC can also refer to **breath alcohol concentration**. Most people, including DUI lawyers, use BAC as a generic term for both.
We created the above BAC calculator based on the Widmark’s Formula with the 0.015 constant. What makes this formula unique is that it expresses the fact that the body processes and removes alcohol from a person's bloodstream at a constant rate.
To estimate your BAC, you must know the following things about the person:
Whenever you are trying to predict your BAC without using a professional breathalyzer or blood test, it is important to note that some factors will affect the rate at which your body absorbs alcohol, including but not limited to your:
According to an article by Duke University, when you drink alcohol, it can be absorbed into your bloodstream once it enters your stomach. But if you are drinking on an empty stomach, most of the alcohol will continue into your small intestine, which is where most alcohol absorption happens. This is because your small intestine can absorb alcohol more quickly than your stomach due to its much larger surface area. Alcohol is water-soluble, so if you drink water with or in-between alcoholic beverages, that will help to dilute it, thus slowing your absorption.
If there is food in your stomach when you’re drinking alcohol, your stomach will work on digesting the food with stomach acid. During that process, your small intestine will be closed off from your stomach, in turn keeping the alcohol in your stomach and significantly slowing the rate of alcohol absorption into your bloodstream. The article by Duke even states that “a fatty meal can reduce the peak blood alcohol concentration (BAC) up to 50% relative to that produced when alcohol is consumed on an empty stomach.” If a “fatty meal” isn’t up your alley, an article by Stanford University recommends eating high-protein foods to slow alcohol absorption.
Thanks to updates in Florida DUI laws, it is illegal to drive with a BAC of 0.08% or higher, and that law applies to both your blood and breath alcohol levels. If this is your first conviction, you may be facing the following penalties for DUI in Florida:
An ignition interlock device is not mandatory for first-time DUI convictions, but a judge may decide to order one depending on the facts of your case. Whether you get probation (Understanding a Violation of Probation Charge), jail time, or both is another decision that is up to the court. However, if this is your first DUI conviction, your total jail sentence and probation time will not exceed one year.
If your license has already been revoked because of your DUI, you may have to complete DUI school and other alcohol-related treatment before you can apply for a hardship license. There are a lot of factors and fees that go into getting a hardship license and having your full license reinstated. To avoid those, it’s best to get a DUI attorney immediately after your arrest. In addition to fighting the charges against you, hiring a skilled DUI attorney within the first few days of your arrest may mean the difference between keeping your driver’s license and having it revoked.
There are certain circumstances in which you might be charged with an aggravated DUI, which will result in enhanced DUI penalties. Conditions that qualify you for an aggravated DUI charge include:
The consequences of an enhanced DUI vary depending on the details of your case and whether this is your first, second, or third offense. For first-time offenders, Florida enhanced DUI penalties may include:
If you think you know how to avoid police suspicion while drunk driving, be aware that Florida police do hold random DUI Checkpoints that are intended to catch drunk drivers. If you do encounter police while driving under the influence, it is important to know that Florida has an implied consent law and refusing a Breathalyzer test is considered a misdemeanor offense for anyone who has a previous refusal on his or her record.
If you, or a loved one, have been arrested for DUI, you need the assistance of an experienced DUI attorney. Once you’ve been arrested for DUI, you only have 10 days to protect your driver’s license. The attorneys at Delgado & Romanik, PLLC, have successfully defended thousands of DUI cases. Call us 24/7 at 386.222.6677 to speak with an experienced DUI attorney and find out how we may be able to help you overcome your DUI charge.
Additional DUI Resources
If you liked this article and want to learn more about DUI, check out some of our other vital DUI articles:
This BAC Calculator can only provide an estimate of what your BAC might be after consuming a certain amount and type of alcoholic beverages and should not be used as legal advice. Our calculator is a way to estimate what an individual's BAC might be at a given point in time and was designed for use in explaining to juries the problems inherent in DUI prosecutions.
Like a breath test machine, this formula does not take into account individual differences in metabolism, etc., although it does account for gender and weight, which a breath test machine does not. However, the BAC Calculator is not as accurate as an actual breathalyzer or blood test.
You must not use this equation or any other formula to decide whether it is safe or legal for you to drive, operate heavy machinery, etc. Please always use a sober designated driver, take a taxi, or use a rideshare service such as Uber or Lyft.
If you have been arrested for DUI, our BAC Calculator cannot prove that you were sober. However, one of our experienced DUI lawyers may be able to help with your case.