Oregon Alcohol Laws
Where to Buy Alcohol
Privately owned retail stores, rather than state stores, sell spirits in Oregon. Beer and wine are usually available in grocery stores and convenience stores. Local ordinances prevail, but generally alcohol may be served in bars and restaurants only between 8 a.m. and 2:30 a.m.
Legal Age for Drinking/Serving Alcohol
You must be 21 to drink alcohol in Oregon, as in all states, but any other work that involves selling or handling alcohol may be done so legally at age 18.
Open Container Laws
An open contain law exists in Oregon, so any previously opened bottles of alcohol may only be carried in the trunk of a vehicle.
If a police officer chemically tests (blood, breath, or urine) a driver and the driver’s blood-alcohol content (BAC) is over .08 percent, that driver is considered ‘per se intoxicated’ and can be charged with DUI with no other evidence required by the courts.
Some states mandate more severe punishment for those convicted of DUI with a particularly high blood-alcohol content, but not Oregon.
‘Zero tolerance laws’ discourage drivers under the age of 21 from drinking by enforcing DUI penalties if they chemically test positive for any percentage of BAC.
Laws that require drivers to submit to breath, blood, or urine testing for alcohol content are called ‘implied consent laws.” Refusal carries penalties that can include mandatory suspension of a driving license for up to a year.
Suspension of the driver’s license by the DMV (Department of Motor Vehicles) in Oregon for DUI offenses is mandatory 90 days for the first offense and one year for the second and third convictions.
Repeat offenders face the possibility of permanent or temporary vehicle confiscation for DUI conviction. Sentencing of mandatory installation of an ignition interlock system is also a possibility, as is education, treatment, or assessment for alcohol abuse.
DUI is considered a felony with the fourth conviction within ten years.