DUI Collisions and Probation
When a driver is convicted of a driving under the influence offense involving a collision, the Court and prosecutor may require additional terms of probation. This may include additional penalties or education programs as well as required restitution to cover any financial damages owed to the victim.DUI Probation and Restitution
Most defendants who are convicted of a misdemeanor DUI offense involving a collision are placed on probation for a period of three to five years. At the time of sentencing, the judge will impose several terms and conditions of probation with which the defendant is expected to comply. Failure to comply with the terms of probation can result in a probation violation and additional penalties.
When a DUI driver is involved in a collision, the Court will require the defendant to pay restitution to any and all victims as a condition of probation. The defendant’s insurer may cover some or the entire restitution amount requested. The defendant is entitled to challenge the amount of restitution via a restitution hearing, in which the victim would be required to show bills or receipts for any damages incurred. The defendant may be required to pay the victim’s deductible or any out-of-pocket damages still owed, even if the victim settled with the defendant’s insurer for a lesser amount.
The defendant may stipulate to a restitution amount or the Judge may order the defendant to pay a specified amount of restitution to the victim. The defendant may pay restitution all at once or may make monthly payments to the victim until the full amount is paid off. The Court may order an ability to pay hearing in order to determine a reasonable monthly payment amount based on the defendant’s income and necessary expenditures.
If the defendant willfully fails to pay restitution, the Court can revoke probation and issue a probation violation. If the defendant failed to pay probation because he or she lacks finances, this would not be considered a willful failure to pay and the defendant would not be subject to additional penalties. The Court may extend probation to give the defendant extra time in order to pay restitution in full. If that does not work, the Court can convert any outstanding restitution to a civil judgement that could be enforced against the defendant’s assets and income.Additional Probation Requirements
Given the grave danger that DUI driving poses, the Court and prosecutor may require additional penalties for DUI requirements who are involved in collisions. The Court may require the defendant to serve time in jail or to complete a specific number of community labor or community service hours. The Court may require a longer DUI alcohol education program or may require that the defendant attend AA or NA meetings. This is especially true for defendants who had high BACs.
There are other programs that the Court may require for defendants who were involved in DUI collisions. The Court may order the defendant to complete the Hospital and Morgue (“HAM) program as a condition of probation. This program takes participants to local emergency rooms and morgues in order to see the destruction caused by DUI offenders. In addition, the Court may require attendance of the MADD Victim Impact Panel (“VIP”). This is a program offered throughout the country in which the survivors or family members of victims speak about their devastating losses.
If you have been charged with a DUI incident involving a collision, it is imperative that you consult with an experienced DUI lawyer as soon as possible. Michael Kraut is a former Deputy District Attorney with over 14 years of prosecutorial experience who works hard to ensure his clients’ rights are protected.
For more information about DUI collisions and probation, Mr. Kraut can be reached 24/7 at 888-334-6344 or 323-464-6453.