DUI Diversion Programs: Do You Qualify?
March 22, 2022
Colorado law takes driving under the influence (DUI) offenses seriously and imposes stringent penalties for people convicted of DUIs. Some of the penalties for DUI in Colorado include hefty fines, possible license revocation, jail time, and others. However, the law also recognizes that people sometimes make mistakes, which is why Colorado allows first-time offenders to participate in DUI diversion programs.
A DUI diversion program, also known as “adult diversion” in Colorado, offers first offenders a second chance and allows them to avoid a conviction and some of the harsh penalties.
At Watkins Law Firm LLC, I advocate for the rights of DUI offenders throughout the state of Colorado. With an office in Boulder, Colorado, I serve people facing DUI charges in Louisville, Longmont, Lafayette, and Broomfield.
What Are DUI Diversion Programs in Colorado?
In Colorado, a DUI diversion program is an adult or pre-trial diversion or deferred prosecution. This program is an option for first-time DUI offenders facing charges in Colorado. Adult diversion is a plea bargain that does not require an eligible individual facing DUI charges to plead guilty.
Under the program, an eligible individual performs specific duties in exchange for having their DUI charges dismissed or not filed. In other words, a first-time offender who completes the diversion program will not have a DUI conviction on their record. The program also allows eligible individuals to file a petition asking the court to seal their arrest records and other records related to the DUI case.
What Does a DUI Diversion Program Do?
When agreeing to participate in the adult diversion program, eligible individuals sign an agreement that specifies the things the individual must do and avoid getting the DUI charges against them dismissed. A DUI diversion program may require a first-time offender to participate in alcohol or drug treatment, complete community service, undergo mental health and abuse treatment, complete anger management classes, or do other things the court asks them to do.
Are You Eligible for a DUI Diversion Program?
Under Colorado law, people are eligible to participate in a DUI diversion program if it is their first DUI offense. In Colorado, adult diversion is available to first-time offenders facing criminal charges for non-violent offenses related to drugs and alcohol. If you qualify for pre-trial diversion, you will be required to meet specific conditions of the program to avoid a conviction.
When deciding whether or not a person is eligible for a diversion program, the district attorney considers the following factors:
Whether the applicant is charged for the first time
The nature and circumstances of the crime
The applicant’s special circumstances
Whether offering the offender to participate in the program would serve the public interest
When asking to participate in a DUI diversion program in Colorado, you may be required to provide information about your:
Past criminal history
Work experience and education
Other requested information
Consider speaking with an experienced attorney to discuss your specific situation and determine if you are eligible to participate in the DUI diversion program.
Benefits of DUI Diversion Programs
For offenders who participate in the diversion program, the benefits of participation include the ability to avoid a conviction on their record and make amends to the victim. However, the participant must perform specific duties in exchange for getting the charges dropped or dismissed. The goal of the diversion program is to divert punishment toward rehabilitation, allowing the offender to rehabilitate themself.
Skilled & Aggressive Advocacy
Driving under the influence is a serious offense in Colorado. However, not everyone is eligible to participate in the DUI diversion program, and many people do not know whether or not they qualify for adult diversion in Colorado. As an experienced DUI defense attorney in Boulder, Colorado, I help people facing criminal charges determine if they are eligible for diversion programs and fight for their best interests. At Watkins Law Firm LLC, I offer free consultations to help people understand their options during this difficult time. I also proudly serve clients in Louisville, Longmont, Lafayette, and Broomfield, Colorado.