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What Is The Legal Alcohol Limit In Georgia And How Much Is Too Much?

Donald Singleton
January 20, 2022

If you’re planning on having a few drinks and driving home, you may wish to understand what the legal alcohol limit is in Georgia first. Knowing your blood alcohol level can prevent you from getting a DUI and facing additional penalties.

In this article, we explore the legal alcohol limit in Georgia and how many drinks is considered too much before getting behind the wheel of a vehicle.


Scroll down to our Legal Alcohol Limit In Georgia infographic:

What Is The Legal Alcohol Limit In Georgia?

How many drinks does it take to reach the legal limit in Georgia? Can I drink one beer and drive?

There are no laws in Georgia to stop you from consuming alcohol, or from drinking a small amount and then driving your motor vehicle. You’re only considered legally drunk, or alcohol-impaired drivers are deemed to have committed a criminal offense when their legal blood alcohol content (BAC) is 0.08% or higher.

While in theory, many people think it’s okay to drive after one drink, whether it’s safe to do so actually depends on a number of factors, such as your gender, the strength of the drink, your body weight and the size of the glass.

The best way to work out how many drinks it takes to reach the legal limit in Georgia is to calculate the number of drinks of a particular type and volume.

For example, 12 ounces of regular beer.

You can then work out how many standard drinks it would take for you to exceed the legal limit for the consumption of alcohol in Georgia. However, this is of course only helpful if you’re monitoring your consumption of beverages.

Georgia alcohol and DUI laws: What is the legal alcohol limit?

The Georgia alcohol driving limit for adults has fluctuated over the last three decades. It’s increased from 0.15 percent 35 years ago to 0.08 percent in 2001 where it has stayed since.

The legal alcohol limit for drivers is currently:

  • 8 percent for an adult non-commercial driver
  • 4 percent for commercial drivers, such as school bus drivers
  • 2 percent for non-commercial drivers under the age of 21 (zero tolerance for underage drivers)

Those who are proven to be under the influence can face a variety of penalties, such as a license suspension, an allocated number of days of community service, or undergoing a clinical evaluation. If a driver has faced confiscation of their license plate, the license revocation period is usually a minimum of 120 days after paying a license reinstatement fee.

How many beers or drinks does it take to reach .08 alcohol level?

Many experts believe that it can take three to six drinks to reach a blood alcohol level of 0.08 percent. For example, 12 ounces of beer, a five-ounce glass of wine or a shot of liquor taken within an hour.

While factors such as gender, alcohol type and glass size play a role, here is a rough estimation depending on a person’s body weight to reach a BAC of 0.08 percent:

  • 100 lbs: three drinks an hour
  • 140 lbs: four drinks an hour
  • 180 lbs: five drinks an hour
  • 220 lbs: six drinks an hour

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some of the most common questions people ask about the legal alcohol limit in Georgia:

What is Georgia’s “Furnishing Alcoholic Beverages to Minor Children” Statute?

Under this statute, parents have the right to take legal action against anyone who provides alcohol to their child without the parents’ permission.

Can I be convicted of driving under the influence of alcohol if I blew under the “legal limit?”

In Georgia, an adult driver may still be arrested if they blew under the legal alcohol limit. For example, if they were pulled over on the suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol, an officer can still arrest the driver and charge them with a DUI.

What is a DUI Less Safe Case?

According to Georgia law, a DUI less safe charge means that the person is considered too impaired to drive. This could be as a result of too much alcohol or if the person appears to be under the influence of drugs. A DUI less safe charge occurs when a person is charged, but no tests are taken as evidence of the offense.

How can you defend against a DUI less safe case?

The argument that the officer didn’t obtain evidence for driving while under the influence is one of the strongest cases for defense. An experienced attorney can challenge the charge.

What is a DUI per se?

This charge is added to your case when you consent to a test or breath, blood or urine. Obtaining a blood alcohol concentration by drawing blood draw, or with a breathalyzer test is evidence that the person was driving over the limit. These tests need to be taken within three hours of them being behind the wheel.

Can passengers drink alcohol in a motor vehicle?

If you’re wondering whether the passenger can drink in Georgia, state law makes it illegal for consumption in motor vehicles. It’s also illegal to have an open alcoholic beverage in any part of the car while on the road or shoulder of any highway. Those who are in violation of the law can be fined up to $200.

How many pints are 14 units?

A total of 14 units is equivalent to six pints of average-strength beer or otherwise 10 small glasses of low-alcohol wine.

How much is too much alcohol per day?

According to Georgia drunk driving laws, a person is considered to be drinking heavily if they have drunk more than one drink per day for women or two drinks per day for men over the last month.

How to Prevent a DUI

Organize a safe driver to pick you up, whether that’s a friend or family member or make use of driver services such as Uber. If you have your own car, use an ignition interlock device before you head out and find an alternative route home. Just in case, if you get involved in an Uber or Lyft accident in Georgia, you can talk to us.

Need some advice?

Our Atlanta personal injury attorney is available to assist you. Get in touch for a free consultation.

What is the legal alcohol limit in Georgia
Donald Singleton

Donald Singleton


A Georgia native, Don founded Singleton Law Firm in 1999 as a continuation of his lifetime commitment to serving his state and community. He has concentrated his trial practice to representing victims of serious injury and wrongful death arising out of trucking, car, bus and motorcycle accidents, premises liability and a wide variety of other causes.

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