Following a conviction for driving under the influence in California, you
can expect to face a range of penalties that can be very restrictive and
costly. You may be ordered to pay fines and court costs. You might also
have to serve a jail sentence and have your driver's license suspended
for a specified amount of time. Many drivers are also ordered to install
and pay for ignition interlock devices on every vehicle they own.
After your license is suspended by the Department of Motor Vehicles, you'll
also need to obtain and pay for an SR22 from your insurance company. In
addition to all of these costs, there are additional expenses about which
many people are unaware. One of these involves being ordered to attend
mandatory alcohol education courses.
Alcohol education programs in California
Following a conviction for driving under the influence, people in Orange
County should expect that the judge will order them to attend and complete
an alcohol education program. First-time DUI offenders may be ordered
to attend one of three programs. The programs depend on the person's
blood alcohol concentration, and include the following:
- The 36-hour program, which lasts for three months;
- The 44-hour program, which lasts for six months; or
- The 60-hour program, which lasts for nine months.
The different programs generally meet on a weekly basis. People who are
attending the first-offender alcohol education programs may obtain a restricted
driver's license. They will be able to use it to drive to and from
their mandatory classes and to and from their jobs. People with second
or subsequent DUI convictions must attend an 18-month program. Courts
can choose to order third-time offenders to attend a program lasting as
long as 30 months.
What the programs entail
Simply attending the required courses is not sufficient. Attendees are
expected to actively participate. You can expect to attend one three-hour
course each week, and the process can be exhausting, time-consuming and
expensive. For the 36-hour program for first offenders, you can expect
- 10 alcohol education and group sessions lasting three hours once a week
- At least 3 face-to-face case manager meetings lasting at least 15 minutes each
- Six self-help sessions
The importance of getting a highly skilled criminal defense lawyer
Being charged with driving under the influence in Orange County can obviously
be extremely expensive. If you retain the attorney with Riverside, San
Bernardino and Orange County's Leading DUI defense law firm of Scott
D. Henry, you may be able to secure a better outcome that is also less
costly. Mr. Henry is the leading criminal defense lawyer for driving under
the influence offenses in the region. He will analyze your case and then
advise you regarding the most appropriate tactics to take in your case.
In some cases, Attorney Henry may be able to get your charges dismissed
completely or reduced to a lesser offense.
If you have already been convicted of driving under the influence, Mr.
Henry may still be able to help you with certain issues. For example,
if you are an out-of-state resident who was convicted in Orange County
of driving under the influence, he may be able to file a motion with the
court asking the judge to accept an equivalent program in your state in
lieu of the mandatory attendance in California's alcohol education
programs. If you are currently facing charges of driving under the influence
of alcohol or drugs, call us today so we can help you with your case.