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Taking an Alcohol Education Course After Getting a DUI in DC

The transcript below is an excerpt from an interview with Jason Kalafat Defense Attorney:

What Advantages Do Taking An Alcohol Education Course Offer Someone That’s Charged With DUI in DC?

Jason Kalafat: It can show the court that the individual takes it very seriously. Also, it can result in a more favorable treatment by the prosecutor in negotiating a resolution. If an individual is convicted of some offense related to the case, then it can go a long way in convincing the court to give them a more lenient punishment or sentence.

Are There Different Types of These Courses?

Jason Kalafat: There are. The most basic course would be a multi-week program where the individual goes for a one session per week for an hour to two. It can increase from there if a counselor believes that the individual has a more pressing need for assistance. There are more intense out-patient programs that include more sessions and more time.

Also, there are in-patient programs for less than thirty days as well as programs that are thirty days or more. It just depends on the individual’s need for treatment. If an individual does have a serious alcohol problem, then they may be counseled to enter into some form of in-patient treatment.

It’s very specific on a case by case basis, but there are different types of programs. Some of which an individual may want to go through their own insurance and go through a private program, but the DC government actually has several different types of programs as well.

What Should An Individual Expect From These Programs?

Jason Kalafat: They can expect to have some one-on-one and some group activities which are counseling sessions with a lot of discussions. They should go in with an open mind to be able to see if they can get something out of it. Facing a DUI charge can be very stressful and ironically can lead to people actually drinking more if alcohol is a crutch or stress-reliever for them. So, I always advise people go into it to see if there’s something you can get out of it because participating in a program may benefit you. Take it as an opportunity to see if it may benefit you personally.

They should just make sure that they attend as required. If they are going to miss some sessions, then they want to make sure that they have documentation so when they’ve completed the program they can show that they have, in fact, done so.

Basically, they can expect to see a lot of people in a similar position who are going to these programs. To some degree, you get out of it what you put into it so I would advise my clients that since you’re doing it anyway see if you can get something good out of it.

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