AM I DIVERSION ELIGIBLE?
You may qualify for a diversion program in Oregon if you meet the following criteria:
1. You have not had a DUI or participated in DUI diversion (or similar drug or alcohol program) in the last fifteen (15) years in any state; AND
2. Your DUI didn’t involve an accident where someone (other than you) was injured; AND
3. You don’t have a commercial driver’s license (CDL)
There are several advantages to having an experienced DUI attorney review your case before deciding to enter a diversion program. For example, your license can still be suspended by the DMV if you failed or refused the breath test. An experienced attorney can defend your right to keep driving at the DMV hearing. You only have 10 days from the day of arrest to file for a hearing. Contact MJM Law Office NOW to ensure that your license remains intact.
If you are not guilty (either because you were not driving, were not impaired or had less than 0.08% BAC) but have been charged with DUI anyway, the diversion process could be unnecessary and expensive. [Our Team] can review the case for possible suppression issues that could result in a complete case dismissal. Finally, we can help you protect yourself against civil liability charges if the offense involved damages to any person or property.
DIVERSION PROCESS AND COSTS
In order to be eligible for a DUI diversion program you must plead guilty or no contest to the charge, although some courts will not accept a no contest plea. You must also pay a diversion fillng fee ($490), pay for an alcohol diagnostic assessment ($150), pay to participate in a victim impact panel (between $20 and $50), and report to weekly diversion classes (fees vary depending on the provider). You will have to attend approximately 16 classes and show a proven track record of 90 days continuous sobriety. Sobriety is measured by the treatment provider taking random urine analysis (UAs). At minimum you will have to provide three UAs, one at the beginning, one near the middle and one at the end. New EGT testing can measure alcohol consumption up to three days back. Payment plans may be available for court fees, but all payments must be received within the year-long program. Additional conditions of diversion include mandatory installation of an ignition interlock devise (IID) on your vehicle, and a prohibition on the consumption of any alcohol during the diversion period, whether driving or not (other than sacramental wine for communion or alcohol prescribed by a doctor). Diversion is expensive and onerous which is why it important to have an experienced DUI attorney thoroughly review your case before entering the program. You will need to plead guilty or no contest to enter diversion, waiving any future right to a trial and subjecting yourself to the maximum penalties of one year in jail and $6,250 in fines if you fail diversion. If your diversion is revoked you will go directly to sentencing.
During the diversion period your guilty plea is temporarily set aside. If you comply with all terms, including payment of fees, attendance in classes and VIP, installation of IID and not consuming any alcohol, your DUI is dismissed at the end of one year.
FAILING OR TERMINATING DIVERSION
The most common reasons for failing the diversion program include not paying the fees, missing diversion classes and getting another DUI. If you fail to comply with the terms of the diversion program the court can terminate your diversion and sentence you for the Driving Under the Influence of Intoxicants charge. The mandatory minimum sentence for a DUI is two days jail or road crew, a $1,000 fine and a 1 year driver’s license suspension. Additionaly, you still must attend a victim impact panel and complete an alcohol treatment program.
If you are not diversion eligible, choose not to enter diversion or lose your case at trial you will be convicted of DUI. The maximum penalty for a first conviction for DUI is one year in jail and a fine of up to $6,250 or $10,000 if there was a minor in the vehicle. Convicted persons are placed on at least 18 months probation and are required to undergo substance abuse evaluation and treatment, including compliance with a number of other restrictions and conditions. DUI conviction carries with it a mandatory 1 year drivers license suspension. A summary of the mandatory minimum sanctions for a first DUI conviction is below:
- $1,000 fine ($2,000 if you blow 0.15% or higher)
- 2 days in jail (or four days on the road crew)
- 1 year driver’s license suspension
- drug and alcohol assessment and treatment
- attend victim impact panel
- probation to the court
If you are facing DUII charges call MJM Law Office, P.C. to speak with an experienced criminal defense lawyer in Eugene, Oregon.
Contact Us online or call 541-505-9872 to schedule a consultation.