Florida DUI Diversion Programs
Some counties in Florida have created DUI Diversion programs, which typically offer first offenders a shot at a reduced or dropped charge. These programs are almost always only open to first-time DUI offenders. Entry into a diversion program is never guaranteed, and there are no lists of what factors you need to meet to ensure entry. However, there are common disqualifications to the various DUI Diversion programs throughout the State of Florida.
Which Florida Counties Offer DUI Diversion Programs?
Many counties in Florida do not offer a DUI Diversion program. To find out if the county you were arrested in offers a DUI diversion program, contact us today.
For example, in Central Florida, Orange, and Osceola counties offer a DUI diversion program that results in the charges being completely dropped if you are accepted into the program and successfully complete it. Seminole County does not have a diversion program but offers a 1st-time offender program that results in a reduction of charges to reckless driving if you complete their program. However, Lake County offers neither such program, and the choices in Lake County are limited to defending the DUI or entering a plea to it.
Typical Automatic Disqualifications from Diversion
An accident, whether or not there is injury or property damage typically will automatically keep a case from being eligible for diversion as will a high breath test result, excessive speed, or other excessively dangerous driving pattern, and of course prior DUI arrests. Though these items are said to be automatic disqualifiers, in the past, under the right circumstances we have had some success getting cases into diversion that had a disqualifier. This is not common and typically exceptions are not made.
Entry Into DUI Diversion
Unlike disqualifications, there is not list of qualifications that automatically get you into a diversion program. Typically, the prosecutor assigned to the case has the power to grant admittance into the diversion program subject to acceptance by the program or can deny forwarding the case for whatever reason they have. They are not required to communicate to the Defendant or the Defense attorney why they will not recommend the case for diversion. It is important that you have an attorney on your side that has a reputation for fighting hard against DUI charges. Prosecutors quickly learn who fights and who has their clients enter a plea as charged.
The Expert DUI defense attorneys at Katz & Phillips, P.A. have earned their reputation as hard fighting attorneys, taking many cases to trial and to victory. Prosecutors know that if they do not recommend the case for Diversion, we will fight the charges to the best of our knowledge and ability for our clients and they will have a fight on their hands. Further, we will work to show the prosecutors the weakness of their cases should they deny diversion and attempt to give them every reason to allow the case into the diversion program.
Result of DUI Diversion Programs
In many counties successful completion of the DUI Diversion Program results in the DUI charges being completely dropped. In other counties the charge is reduced to a lesser offense with far less penalties and consequences.
What We Love About Florida DUI Diversion Programs
The Expert DUI Defense Attorneys at Katz & Phillips, P.A. love diversion programs and almost always recommend that the clients we can get into such a program accept the program. There are many reasons for this, which we will be happy to discuss with you when we review the facts of your case, however, the most important reason is surety.
If we get you into a diversion program and you do your part by successfully completing the terms of the program, the state will follow through and give the results promised. If the promise was charges dropped, they will be. If the promise is a reduced charge, you will get the benefit of the bargain you made. However, if you do not accept the Diversion program, we cannot guarantee a result.
Even if we believe you have a great case for a jury trial and strongly believe you will win a not-guilty verdict, we cannot guarantee that. A jury will come back however they come back. We can guarantee to give you our best effort using all our knowledge and experience and tell you what we think will happen, but until the jury comes back with a verdict, no one can know for certain if you will be found guilty or not. With a diversion program, you know the results before you agree to enter the program. Typically, our clients love this level of certainty.
Call us today to discuss whether a diversion program is available in the county where you were arrested and what we can do to either get you into that program or fight the charges against you. At Katz & Phillips, P.A. our expert DUI attorneys look forward to speaking with you.