If you have been arrested for a DWI offense in Harris County DWI, you may want to consider the “DIVERT“(Direct Intervention using Voluntary Education, Restitution and Treatment) program. DIVERT provides an opportunity for first time DWI offenders to have the case dismissed if he or she successfully completes the program.
You must meet the following criteria to be eligible for DIVERT:
- It must be your first DWI charge.
- You must be a legal resident or a U.S. Citizen.
- No prior criminal history (including juvenile offenses).
- Agree to an interview that evaluates possible alcohol or drug dependency.
After submitting your application, the District Attorneys office evaluates your case to determine eligibility. Once that’s established, a 15-minute interview with a probation officer will be scheduled.
Prior to your interview, you will take a drug and alcohol evaluation and pay a $202 program fee. After the conversation with the probation officer, you will be asked to submit to a urine test. If you fail the test, your application will probably be denied.
You will find out before your next court date whether or not you were accepted into the program. If you are accepted, your DWI attorney and the DA will sign a contract in which you agree to attend treatment as outlined in their recommendation and complete the DIVERT ?education classes designed to prevent another DWI.Terms of the agreement include having an ignition interlock installed on your vehicle for a minimum period of time, 16 hours of community service, regular drug testing, a clean record through the length of your enrollment, and meetings with your probation officer once a month.
By signing the agreement, you are pleading guilty to the offense, waiving your right to trial by jury, or the right to appeal from assessment of sentence. If you comply with the conditions of the contract and complete the DIVERT program, your case will eventually be dismissed.
More and more drivers are finding that the DIVERT program is preferable to probation or jail time and fines. It is important to have your Houston DWI attorney with you when you talk with your probation officer or when it’s time to negotiate terms in the agreement.