A California DUI can carry some serious consequences. That is why most people try their hardest to figure out the best way to get around those consequences. We do not always realize that a few drinks can lead to being over the blood alcohol concentration (BAC) legal limit, but when we cross that line in a moment of bad judgment, we do have a few options to make amends for our California DUI decision.
California offers a few DUI diversion programs and a way to get your license back after a first-time drunk driving conviction:
- SB-1176 Program – first-time offenders are ordered to complete an online, 12-hour “Wet Reckless” DUI program.
- AB-541 Program – first-time offenders are ordered to complete an in-person, 32-hour/three-month DUI program.
- AB-1353 Program – first-time offenders (usually with a BAC of .20 or higher) are ordered to complete an in-person, 9-month DUI program.
- PC-1000 Deferred Entry of Judgement Program – first-time offenders are ordered to complete an addiction and recovery online program.
Currently, only four counties in California mandate ignition interlock devices for a drunk driving conviction. However, in 2019, the entire state will require interlocks for all California DUI convictions, including a minimum of one year with the device for a DUI with a BAC under .15 percent. In many cases, an ignition interlock device may be part of a plea bargain down to a wet reckless charge, or part of probation for any type if impaired driving conviction.
DUI diversion programs are beneficial to those who are ready to be serious about safe driving, but there is an easier way to steer clear of a California DUI: plan for a safe ride home. All it takes is a few minutes to put that plan into place, and with the touch of a smartphone screen or a call to a friend, you can be on a road that avoids drunk driving entirely.