There are many consequences of a drunk driving conviction in California. Most people only think about the fines, possible jail time, or higher insurance rates. However, in order to get your license back, you may have to complete a number of steps the court requires as part of your probation.
One of the conditions of probation could be to go through DUI school, get alcohol counseling, or undergo substance abuse treatment. If you want to know about your legal rights after an Oakland drunk driving arrest, contact East Bay DUI defense lawyer Lynn Gorelick for legal advice.
Voluntary Alcohol Counseling After a Drunk Driving Arrest
In some situations, it may be in your own best interests to go through alcohol treatment on your own initiative after a DUI arrest. This is one of the things you can do to show the judge you are taking the situation seriously, recognize a possible substance abuse problem, and are taking action to address the issue.
This can help if you are trying to negotiate a plea agreement or diversion instead of a criminal conviction. Depending on the judge, showing that you are in a substance abuse treatment program or rehab can be a factor in the judge deciding how to handle your case. If you want to know what else you can do to improve your chances at diversion or pleading your case down, talk to your Oakland DUI defense attorney.
Substance Abuse Assessment and DUI School
If you are convicted of drunk driving in California, you will most likely have to go through a substance abuse education and counseling program known as DUI school. DUI school is a condition of probation for most drunk driving convictions, including first-time offenders.
DUI school has educational and counseling components. It also involves group counseling and individual counseling and evaluations. The type of DUI school program will depend on your criminal charges. Even if you get a wet reckless DUI reduction, you may still have to go through DUI school. Based on the charges, the DUI school program will require:
- Wet-reckless: 12-hour program
- 1st DUI: 30-hour program
- 1st DUI high BAC (0.20% or higher): 60-hour program
- 2nd DUI: 18-month program
- 3rd DUI: 30-month program
In some cases, you may have to continue your counseling and treatment after the end of the program if the provider recommends additional counseling to the court.
Drivers are responsible for paying the costs of DUI school. It may cost around $800 to $900 for a 3-month/1st DUI program. However, you may be eligible for financial assistance if you qualify. There are limits for how many classes you can miss, if you are late, or if you show up to the classes under the influence of alcohol.
There are a number of DUI schools located across Alameda County and Contra Costa County. You can get more information about qualifying DUI schools in your area from the court, the DMV, or your DUI defense attorney.
DUI Defense for Drivers in Oakland and the East Bay
If you are arrested for drunk driving in Oakland, talk to your DUI defense lawyer about the benefits of getting alcohol treatment after your arrest. If you want to avoid mandatory alcohol treatment after a DUI, you can fight the charges and avoid a criminal conviction.
Call an experienced DUI defense attorney for legal help. East Bay attorney Lynn Gorelick has more than 40 years of California DUI defense experience and understands the consequences of a drunk driving conviction. Contact East Bay DUI defense lawyer Lynn Gorelick today.