Our clients frequently ask what consequences a prior out-of-state conviction will have for a DUI case in Kansas. Whether you were visiting Kansas from another state or recently moved to Kansas, your prior DUI record will follow you and could have consequences on your Kansas case.
Kansas enhances penalties for second and subsequent DUI convictions. Your third or subsequent conviction will be enhanced to a felony under almost every circumstance. Kansas will count prior out-of-state DUI convictions that meet the requirements for a Kansas DUI conviction. But, because not all states have DUI laws similar to the DUI laws in Kansas, not every DUI conviction from every state will count as a prior in Kansas.
For example, in a recent unpublished case, the Kansas Court of Appeals held that a Nebraska DUI could not count as a prior conviction in Kansas because the Nebraska DUI law is broader than Kansas law. Similarly, Kansas courts have declined to use prior DUI convictions from Missouri to enhance sentences in Kansas. While these are examples of out-of-state convictions not used to enhance sentences in Kansas, DUI convictions from several other states (including Texas, Colorado, and Oklahoma) are used to enhance penalties for Kansas DUIs.
DUI laws are complex. It is extremely important to have an experienced DUI attorney who can recognize this issue when it appears. If you have been charged with DUI in Kansas, contact the experienced criminal defense attorneys at Joseph, Hollander & Craft. With attorneys in Wichita (316-262-939), Topeka (785-234-3272), Lawrence (785-856-0143), and Overland Park (913-948-9490), we serve clients from the Oklahoma border to the Kansas City area.