DUI Diversion Program
The Hillsborough County State Attorney’s Office, which includes any DUI charges in Tampa and Plant City, just announced that they will start a DUI diversion program. The program will be called Reducing Impaired Driving Recidivism or RIDR. The new program will start March 1st 2018 and is aimed at first time offenders.
There are only a few other counties in Florida that currently offer a DUI diversion program, including Orlando, Miami and Palm Beach. The programs differ in each county but many have strict guidelines as to who would qualify for the program. Just like in other counties, the Tampa program would likely not allow anybody with a prior DUI conviction or anyone who is charged with DUI that involves a crash and property damage or personal injuries.
These diversion programs can have several pros and cons. Some of the pros would be that a first time DUI offender can avoid the harsh collateral consequences of a DUI conviction which often times would require an additional driver’s license suspension and a special insurance policy that would cost a lot more than just the regular car insurance. Some of these programs, including the program in Orlando will allow a person arrested for a first DUI to have the charges against them dropped after completing the conditions of the program.
At this point the exact requirements for the program are still unknown. The state attorney’s office will announce those requirements soon. Many of the programs do however, require anybody who enters the program to complete conditions that are often times part of a plea to DUI or reckless driving. These conditions include DUI school and community service hours.
If you are charged with a DUI, contact a qualified criminal defense attorney in the Tampa Bay Area to learn more about the diversion program and how we can help you with your DUI.