Getting a “Driving Under the Influence” charge (DUI) can be pretty darn scary (here is a link with helpful information from the DMV on what to do if you get a DUI: http://www.dmv.ca.gov/dl/driversafety/). Going to court to take care of the charge can be even scarier. You meet with the DA and they inform you that there are all sorts of classes and fines you are going to have to complete and pay in order to plead guilty to the charge. But what are all of those DUI classes? Here is a breakdown of the classes and what they all mean:
SB 1176 – This is a class for a first-time California “wet reckless” offense. Now, a “wet reckless” is not something you are ever charged with, but it is something that you can plead down to on a first time DUI. Whether you can plead to a “wet reckless” depends on the circumstances of your DUI, but it usually means you have to pay less fees.
The “wet reckless” class consists of 12 hours of DUI school. This usually means there are six weekly two hour classes. You cannot miss more than two consecutive classes or three total classes over the course of the six weeks. If you do, the administrator will dismiss you from the program and you have to go back to court. Additionally, if you miss any classes at all, you must make up those missed classes.
AB 803 – This is a first time DUI program for those people who are 18 – 20 years old. This one is also a twelve hour course consisting of one, two hour class a week, for six weeks.
AB 541 – This class is the three month program. If you are not able to plead down to a “wet reckless”, this is usually what your class will be, unless your DUI is more serious. This class consists of 10-15 classes over the course of three to four months, totaling about 30 hours of instruction. Expect to have to attend about a meeting a week. You may miss a total of five classes before your DUI school instructor drops you from the class and you have to go back into court.
AB 762 – This program was the six month DUI program. It is not as common as most judges prefer the nine month program if your first time DUI is serious enough to warrant the nine month program. However, the judge might put you in this program if the judge believes three months is not going to be enough, but 9 months is too much. You are allowed seven absences from this program before you are dropped and have to go back before the judge.
AB 1353 – This is the nine month program. If you receive this program with a first time DUI, it means your BAC was 0.20% or higher. This is also the program you would receive if you were convicted of a “wet reckless” and were convicted of another “wet reckless” or DUI in the last 10 years. This nine month program consists of 60 hours of class instruction and you are allowed seven absences before you are dropped from the program and have to go back to court.
SB 38 – This program is 18 months and is for second time DUI offenders. This class consists of bi weekly interviews during your first year, hours of community reentry monitoring, and close to 80 hours of instruction. You may miss a total of ten classes before the provider may drop you from the course.
SB 1365 – This class is a 30 month course. AS of now, Los Angeles County and Stanislaus County are the only counties that offer this program. If your BAC is particularly high on your second DUI or if this is your third, or subsequent, DUI, the court may order this program. Let’s just say, it’s a lot of work and time. You are permitted to miss 15 classes before you are dropped from the program.
What Happens if I am Dropped from my Program?
If you miss more than the allotted number of absences, or you are non compliant, and the provider drops you from the program, you are in violation of your probation. This will trigger a warrant for your arrest and you will have to go back to court. Once back in court you will have to convince the judge to get allow you to re-enroll in your program. You will likely have to admit the violation in order for the judge to allow you to re-enroll. Admitting violations can become a problem later on when you want to try and expunge your misdemeanor charge.
As you can see, getting a DUI is complex and there are many ways to make things worse in court if you don’t know what you are doing. Should you find yourself facing a DUI charge or a violation for getting dropped from your program, give us a call: 800-797-8406. We can help.