What to Know about DUI School in Nevada
When it comes to receiving a driving under the influence (DUI) charge in the State of Nevada, the option of attending what is known as a “DUI School” is available, specifically for first-time offenders.
Here is what to know about this option, what it involves, and what happens if a defendant is not successful in completing the program.
What Is DUI School?
In Nevada, DUI School involves an eight-hour drug and alcohol education course, which is required of all first-time misdemeanor DUI defendants who are convicted. The course is available in-person or online, and the average cost for taking the course is $100.
After the defendant pleads either guilty or no contest to driving under the influence, the court clerk will provide the defendant information how and where he or she can complete the DUI school program. Depending on the facts of the case, Nevada judges normally give defendants anywhere from three to six months to complete the course.
If a defendant is facing a second-time DUI charge, he or she will likely not be sentenced to the simple eight-hour DUI school. The defendant may be ordered to complete a more intense and much longer drug and alcohol education course.
If the defendant’s charge is lowered to reckless driving, and this is the person’s first DUI charge, it is still likely that the person will have to attend the DUI School program.
Coroner’s DUI Program
Defendants who had high blood alcohol content (BAC) levels may also be ordered to complete the Coroner’s DUI program, on top of the regular DUI school. During this program, the participants view photographs of deceased victims of drunk driving accidents. The hope is that viewing these corpses will be a deterrent to ever driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs again.
Judges will normally order this course if the defendant’s BAC registered at .18 or higher. The program is done only in person at the Coroner’s office.
Failure to Complete DUI School
If the defendant was not able to complete the class by the deadline but has a valid reason, such as illness or inability to pay for the course, the judge may extend the deadline if requested. However, this needs to be requested in advance and not after the deadline for completion has passed.
If the defendant does not have a valid reason for not completing the class, that six month suspended jail sentence may suddenly become an active sentence. It is for this reason it is of extreme importance that the defendant notifies the court if an extension is needed.
Costs and Access of Program
The cost of the DUI school program depends on the type of school and type of program. A typical eight-hour DUI class ranges from $89 to $185. A level two, 16-hour class can cost $275, while a 24-hour level three drug and alcohol class can be $325. The Clark County Coroner’s DUI program costs approximately $150.
Several programs exist, but the more popular online programs include ABC Drive Safe, Legal Rehab Services (LRS), and Nevada OLTS. The Clark County clerk’s office or courthouse should have additional programs listed for in-person classes. If a defendant is looking into taking an online course not listed through the program, he or she should contact the court to see if the course is accepted.
Many travelers to the Las Vegas area who have too much to drink and get behind the wheel find themselves in this dilemma. Because the DUI school can be completed online, an out-of-state defendant can access a class in his or her respective state.
However, if the specific offense was severe with a high BAC level, the court may order that the defendant complete the coroner’s DUI program, which may require the person to return to the Las Vegas area to take the course. It is possible that the out-of-state defendant can find an equivalent course in the defendant’s state, but this will require court approval.
Other DUI Penalties
In addition to the DUI School, other first-time conviction penalties for a DUI include the following:
- Fines ranging from $400 to $1,000;
- Participation in a Victim Impact Panel;
- Six (6) month jail sentence, normally suspended;
- An order to avoid future arrests or charges while the DUI case is open; and
- Driver’s license revocation for 90 days.
Contact Us Today!
If you have been arrested for a DUI while visiting Nevada, it is important you contact the Hill Firm today. We can meet with you to discuss your rights and all potential legal consequences from your arrest. Contact us today at 702-848-5000