Washington State DUI Deferred Prosecution
Petitioning for DUI Deferred Prosecution in WA
One of our tasks at DUIHeroes is giving our clients as many options as possible for a favorable outcome. Even if you’re likely to be convicted of a DUI, you may have several options available to you. One of those options is a DUI Deferred Prosecution program. If alcohol or drugs have become a consistent problem in your life and you have received repeated DUI charges, the court may grant you deferred prosecution.
There are two main benefits of a DUI Deferred Prosecution program: you can get help fighting addiction and mitigate the long-term damage caused by another DUI conviction. When completed, deferred prosecution results in dismissal of the DUI charges—an enormous benefit to defendants. The deferred prosecution only remains on your record if you get another DUI in the future, in which case it will count against you.
The Revised Code of Washington (RCW) lays out the specifics of this program. Specifically, RCW 10.05 gives you the ability to petition the court for deferred prosecution on your DUI case, but only if it is clear that substance addiction or alcohol-use disorder is a contributing factor to your history of DUI arrests. It is important to keep in mind that this program is not for everyone: it takes five years minimum to complete. The good news is that if you successfully complete it, you’ll avoid conviction. If you want to know more about what this program expects and who can use it, connect with DUIHeroes today.
Do I Qualify for the Washington Deferred Prosecution DUI Program?
To qualify for DUI deferred prosecution in Washington, you must first have a serious alcohol problem for which treatment is required. The law extends to include mental health and drug-related deferred prosecutions as well. If you have one of these three problems, believe you may need treatment, and at risk for committing another offense without treatment, you will qualify.
To complete, you must meet the following requirements for five years:
- Complete a two-year addiction treatment program
- Attend two weekly AA or sober-support meetings
- Abstain from all alcohol and non-prescribed drugs
- Agree to install an ignition interlock device in your vehicle
Keep in mind that this option requires admitting to DUI or DWI. Fighting your charges is mutually exclusive with petitioning for deferred prosecution. If you believe that you did not commit a crime and are innocent of the DUI or DWI charge, this is not the option for you.
Drawbacks of Deferred DUI Prosecution in Washington
Though this may seem like an easy path towards having your charges dismissed, there are a number of drawbacks of which you must be aware. If you fail to complete all aspects of the program, you will be found guilty of the underlying DUI and sentenced. Additionally, you may be subject to maximum sentencing. Participating in the program requires giving up your right to a trial and your right to challenge all evidence and the case. Finally, you only are allowed one deferred prosecution for your entire life.
The DUI Deferred Prosecution program is not to be taken lightly. It is best used in second and multiple DUI offenses where the mandatory minimum penalties are quite high and the likelihood of another offense looms large.
Legal Guidance from Washington DUI Defense Lawyers
If you are considering taking this path, we can discuss whether or not you qualify for deferred prosecution DUI and determine if it’s a good idea for you. If it is, we will guide you through the process of getting all of the paperwork prepared and filed with the courts. All of this is part of the high-quality representation you get at DUIHeroes.
Our firm defends defendants facing DUI charges all over Washington:
At our law office, we make sure to give our full, undivided attention to every case. You will not be ignored or swept aside; we consciously limit our caseload so that we can exhaust every option available to our clients. This way we can help you to the best of our ability in obtaining a favorable outcome for your DUI case.
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- Founding Attorney, Jonathan Dichter
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