While first-time offenses do go on a driver's record, in most states, drivers who opt to go to traffic school can remove that ticket from their record. For instance, per DMV Florida, an insurer can't raise a driver's rates if the driver has accumulated no points thanks to traffic school.
If the first offense involves driving while intoxicated, the driver is charged with a misdemeanor and may be sentenced to as much as six months in jail, according to Nolo. Many states require mandatory jail time for a first-time DUI offense in addition to high fines. Sentences may be increased if blood-alcohol content was particularly high or if someone was killed as a result of the DUI offense.