Interviewer: In regards to drug and alcohol counseling: when is it required, and where will it happen in the DUI process?
Screening and Counseling from an Approved Facility Is Required Following a DUI Conviction in Arizona
Brian Sloan: Anyone convicted of DUI is going to be required to do alcohol or drug screening, counseling, education, and/or treatment from approved facility. Usually it’s going to be a matter of attending 16 or up to 108 hours at by the counseling center.
Before someone begins their counseling session, they are required to do a screening, and a screening is basically done with a counselor to determine what number of hours would be appropriate. The number of hours an individual is required to undergo are usually based on several different factors, primarily considering what a person’s alleged blood alcohol content was at the time of the arrest.
Attorney Sloan Recommends Voluntary Counseling for His Clients That Are Charged with DUI
Generally speaking, I do often recommend that my clients get themselves into counseling immediately, as soon after arrest as possible. One, because depending on what counseling center you go to, if you were to be convicted, the time you have spent is very likely going to count towards the counseling you would be required to do if you are convicted.
Attending Voluntary Counseling Is a Proactive Measure with Numerous Benefits
Two, it really looks good. It looks good to your employer, if that might be a factor. It looks good to the prosecutor during pre-negotiations. Counseling is not necessarily fun. It will take time and money out of your life, but it can help you in the long run.
People May Be Required to Attend a Victim Impact Panel after a DUI Conviction in Arizona
Interviewer: Can you explain what attending a victim impact panel entails?
Brian Sloan: Sure. The victim impact panel is the class organized by the Mothers against Drunk Driving. It’s something that is specifically ordered by the judge if they feel that is in the best interest of the defendant after they are convicted of DUI. I believe it’s a one-time class.
The Victim Impact Panel Shows How Damaging Drinking and Driving Is to Our Society
The defendant will have to pay to attend. At the class, I believe that people get up to speak and videos are shown. It’s really trying to show the human side of how drunk driving impacts families and our communities. Counseling is for your benefit. Jail is for your benefit, or for your punishment, I’ll say.
The Mothers against Drunk Driving impact panel is more to show the cost to society and what happens to other people when someone is to drink and drive or do drugs and then drive impaired.