You can face a number of serious consequences if you are convicted of driving under the influence (DUI) in California. The court system can fine you, sentence you to jail time, and suspend your driver’s license. You may also have to complete a DUI education program.
You can use this article to learn more about the types of education programs you may have to go to if you are convicted of a DUI in California. Find out how long these programs last, what they involve, and more right here with the Simmrin Law Group.
The Facts About DUI Education Programs in California
Let’s dig into the details of DUI programs. Note that all DUI programs must be completed in person. There are no licensed online DUI programs in California. These programs may offer drivers:
- Alcohol and drug education
- Counseling programs
- Group counseling
- Community reentry monitoring
- Individual interviews
- Community service components
Not all of these programs provide all of the above services. You should also be aware that California divides DUI programs into two main categories: programs for first-time offenders and programs for multiple offenders.
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Programs for First Offenders
Programs for first offenders are generally short. There are several different programs in this category, including a:
Wet Reckless Program
Drivers who are arrested for a DUI may be able to get their charges reduced to wet reckless through a plea bargain. According to the California Department of Health Care Services, these drivers need to finish a DUI education program that lasts 12 hours.
Drivers who operated a vehicle with a blood alcohol content (BAC) that was above 0.08% and below 0.15% could be entered into a 3-month DUI program. This program requires 30-hours of alcohol and drug education.
You may be required to complete a 9-month program if your BAC was over 0.20% at the time of your DUI arrest. Individuals in the 9-month program have to complete 60 hours of alcohol and drug education.
Programs for Multiple Offenders
Drivers with previous DUI convictions may be entered into a longer education program. There are two programs in this category, including a(n):
Drivers with at least two DUI convictions can face an 18-month DUI education program. This program includes more educational efforts than programs for first-time offenders. You may be required to take part in:
- Group counseling for 52 hours
- Alcohol and drug education for 12 hours
- Community reentry monitoring for six hours
- Individual interviews on a biweekly basis
The thirty-month DUI program is the longest educational option offered by the state of California. Enrollment in this program is restricted to drivers with at least three DUI convictions. During the 30-month program, you must complete:
- Group counseling for 78 hours
- Alcohol and drug education for 12 hours
- Community service for up to 300 hours
- Individual interviews on a regular basis
Additional DUI Penalties in California
You should be aware that there are additional penalties in place if you are convicted of a DUI in California. In addition to the completion of an alcohol education program, you can face fines, jail time, and the suspension of your driver’s license. These penalties increase each time you are convicted of a DUI. Let’s review examples of these penalties now:
Fines for DUIs in California
- Up to $2,000 for a first offense
- Up to $2,500 for a second offense
- Up to $3,000 for a third offense
Jail Time for DUIs in California
- Up to six months for a first offense
- Up to one year for a second or third offense
License Suspension for DUIs in California
- Up to one year for a first offense
- Up to two years for a second offense
- Up to three years for a third offense
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Get Help Handling California DUI Charges
As you can see, the court system in California harshly punishes drivers who are convicted of a DUI. Your life can be thrown off-course as you try to deal with fines, jail time, a license suspension, and education programs following a conviction.
You can increase your odds of beating a DUI charge and avoiding these penalties by working with a DUI lawyer in Los Angeles. The professionals at the Simmrin Law Group can help you handle any DUI accusations you are facing.
Moving quickly after you are arrested is important when it comes time to build a strong defense. Reach out to our criminal defense lawyers in Los Angeles right now to get a FREE case evaluation. Just call (310) 896-2723 or complete our online contact form to get started.