According to Ramsell and Associates, the statue of limitations for a misdemeanor DUI is generally 18 months. For a felony DUI, the statute of limitations is typically three years.
Lawrence Taylor points out that this statute of limitations for a DUI does not run out if the individual fails to take action. As long as charges were filed within a one-year window, the statute of limitations has been met, regardless of whether or not it has been prosecuted. As such, an individual who tries to wait out a DUI charge without taking care of it is likely to have an arrest warrant in his name.
Taylor also claims that in all likelihood, the prosecutor files charges by the first date. However, some factors may cause the prosecutor to hold off on filing a charge. These may include waiting on a blood test, or in cases where the blood alcohol content was close to or below the state's legal limit, or if the prosecutor has a backlog of cases that need to be filed. If any of these situations occur, the defendant is notified if charges are filed. This is an ideal time for the defendant to hire an attorney who may be able to keep charges from being filed.