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What Is a First Offender Class?


If you are arrested for a DUI, you may be required to take a first offender class. This is a program that is reserved for individuals who have been convicted of their first DUI. The DUI Education Program for First-Time Offenders is one of the several different programs that are available for first-offenders. This program lasts three months and includes counseling and alcohol and drug education. The class costs between $500 to $600 and the defendant is required to pay those costs in order to enroll in the program. Sometimes, courts will mandate a 9, 18, or 30 month class for a first-time offender, depending on the nature of the DUI. These classes can be more expensive because they are longer.

If you are arrested for a DUI and your blood-alcohol content was less than 2.0, you will probably only need to take a state-licensed three-month and 30-hour alcohol and drug education program. Individuals that were arrested for a first offense with a BAC of .20 or higher will need to take the nine-month, 60-hour program instead. The 18 and 30-month programs are generally reserved for second-time or subsequent offenders.

There are a variety of state-licensed service providers that offer drug and alcohol programs. You will want to choose a DUI school that is close to where you live or work and offers the type of class that you have been ordered to attend. You may be able to take the class in a physical classroom, or can opt for an online program instead.

In some cases, first offender DUI classes can work to a defendant's advantage. A judge may demand that an offender attend the class in exchange for less jail time or lower fines. You will want to talk with a San Jose DUI lawyer at our firm today if you are interested in taking a DUI class.