If you are convicted for drunk driving, you’ll be required to complete a DUI class. The length of your course will depend on how many DUIs you have had in the past and how high your BAC was at the time of your arrest. If you have any questions about DUI classes in San Diego County, you should ask your attorney, but here is a quick overview of the courses.
Length of San Diego DUI Program
The duration of your DUI class will vary based on the specifics of your charges. Here’s how the programs break down by length and cost:
- 12 Hour Course: This program is reserved for some drug DUI cases and for those whose blood alcohol is .07 or below. Drivers with .07 will typically get convicted of a wet reckless. The DMV, however, will not give a restricted license to drivers with wet reckless convictions unless they take the three month DUI program.
- 3 Month (30 Hours) Course: The majority of those convicted for a first-time DUI will have to go through this $843 program, but those with a BAC above .20 will be required to take a longer course.
- 9 Month (60 Hours) Course: Anyone who has a BAC above .20 on their first DUI or who receives a second wet reckless will need to take this class, which costs $1850.
- 18 Month (76.5 Hours) Course: Those sentenced to a second DUI in San Diego County will be required to take the 18 month class, that costs anywhere from $1,900 and $2,600.
- 30 Month (90 Hours) Course: These $3,000 programs are not required by state law, but judges sometimes assign these extra-long DUI classes in San Diego to those who have been convicted of three or more DUIs in a 10 year period or those who have a second DUI with a BAC above .20.
What DUI School Entails
It’s important to know that California does not accept any form of online DUI courses. If you take such a class, you will just end up losing money and it will not count towards your mandatory DUI course requirement. When you attend a DUI class, you’ll go through a combination of substance abuse counseling, education about the impact of drunk driving and information on alcohol and drug abuse. The counseling will be in both group and interview formats while the education may include discussions, lectures and video components. While you must attend these classes, the only part you must actively participate in are the one-on-one interviews.
You are required to stay sober at these programs and if you are suspected of being under the influence of alcohol or drugs at DUI classes in San Diego, you may be asked to take a drug or alcohol screening and if you fail or refuse, you may be dropped from the program. You can also be dropped from the class if you are disruptive, sleep during the class or if you are deemed a threat to another student or the instructor.
Missing DUI Classes in San Diego
The court understands that people can get sick or have personal emergencies that may make it impossible for someone to attend every class of their DUI program. That’s why you are allowed to miss a certain number of classes in each program as long as you make up the missed session later on before obtaining your certificate of completion. The longer the course, the more classes you are able to miss before being dropped from the program. For example, if you are in a 12 hour program, you can miss two sessions, but if you are in a 30 month program, you can miss up to 15 sessions.
Until you complete your DUI class, you will not be able to obtain a restricted driver license from the California DMV. If you drive on a suspended license, you will not only violate your probation, but also be accused additional misdemeanor. If you fail to complete the DUI classes by the court-specified time frame, you will be violating probation, a warrant will be issued for your arrest and you will need to defend yourself in a probation hearing. If you have a good reason for failing to complete your classes, for example, you had a long-term medical or family emergency, your lawyer can explain this to the court and you may be able to avoid additional penalties. But in most cases, those who do not have a good reason for completing their DUI classes will face additional jail time and/or a longer license suspension.
If you are accused of drunk driving, or if you have any questions about your these court-ordered DUI programs, please call (760) 643-4050 to schedule a free consultation with top attorney Peter M. Liss.
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