Driving under the influence (DUI) of alcohol or drugs is criminalized in all 50 states. While the legal limit nationwide is .08% blood alcohol level (BAL), a driver can be arrested and charged with DUI with an even lower BAL as long as the state can prove that the driver was “impaired” by drugs or alcohol, or both.
In Florida, the crime of driving under the influence is criminalized under Section 316.193 of the Florida Statutes. While the penalties for DUI include fines, points on the driver’s record, a misdemeanor or felony conviction, and driver license suspension, they also include a DUI program, commonly referred to as “DUI School.”
The Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (DHSMV) is the government agency that oversees the state’s licensed DUI programs. It’s also the agency that governs the state’s contracted Ignition Interlock Device (IID) providers, and drivers who are convicted of driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
In Florida, Sections 322.292 and 322.293 of the Florida Statutes cover the laws pertaining to the state’s DUI programs. For the purposes of this article, we are going to shed light on the state’s DUI programs, the different courses, and how much they cost. If you’re facing DUI charges in Tampa or Hillsborough County, this information will be important to you.
What Are DUI Programs?
All states have drug and alcohol education programs for DUI offenders, and Florida is no exception. The purpose of these programs is to educate DUI offenders about the effects of drugs and alcohol on the individual and how they impact various aspects of the person’s life. Florida’s DUI programs are ran by non-profit organizations, and DUI offenders are required to successfully complete them in order to satisfy both driver license and judicial requirements. A DUI offender cannot restore their driving privileges until they have successfully completed the court-mandated DUI program.
Level I and Level II DUI Programs
In Florida, there are two types of DUI programs: Level I programs are for first-time offenders, and Level II programs for drivers with multiple DUI violations.
- The Level I DUI program involves at least 12 hours of classroom instruction and it incorporates both interactive and informative techniques to educate the DUI defendant.
- The Level II DUI program involves at least 21 hours of classroom education and this course focuses primarily on interactive education in a group setting. The Level II course has a small student-to-instructor ratio and cannot exceed 15 students per a class. The Level II class addresses the issues unique to repeat offenders, as well as preparing the offender for “treatment” since the majority of offenders in this class are required to obtain treatment. Typically, an offender who is enrolled in a Level II DUI course is concurrently receiving treatment from a licensed Department of Children and Families (DCF) provider.
DUI Program Fees
If you are facing DUI charges in Florida, you may be wondering how much the DUI program fees would set you back. If you’re convicted of DUI, you would be expected to pay for the DUI program fees out of pocket. As of this writing, the DUI program fees are as follows, but they are subject to change:
- Level I registration costs $280 (within 90 days of enrolling).
- Level I, the First Course Reassignment is $40 (within 90 days of enrolling).
- Level I, the Second Course Reassignment is $75 (within 90 days of enrolling).
- Level I, the Third Course Reassignment is $153 (within 90 days of enrolling).
- Level I, any reassignment that occurs 90 or more days after enrollment is $275.
- Level II registration is $425.
- Level II, the First Course Reassignment is $60 (within 90 days of enrolling).
- Level II, the Second Course Reassignment is $120 (within 90 days of enrolling).
- Level II, the Third Course Reassignment is $238 (within 90 days of enrolling).
- Level II, any reassignment is $420 if it’s 90 or more days after enrolling.
We hope this information helps you better understand Florida’s Level I and Level II DUI programs. If you’re facing DUI charges, contact our firm to meet with a Tampa DUI lawyer for a free case evaluation!