Iowa law requires that every individual convicted or receiving a deferred judgment be required to undergo and successfully complete a drinking driver’s reality education program. There are three primary, non-custodial programs that individuals convicted of drunk driving in this state may be ordered to attend.
The first and most common drinking drivers program is the 12-hour drinking drivers program. This is the program that an individual must complete before the Iowa Department of Transportation can reinstate their driving privileges. This class is ordinarily offered over weekends and is spread out in two, six-hour, blocks of time. Courts do not give an individual credit against any imposed jail sentence for completion of this program. On average, this class costs approximately $125.
The second drinking drivers program is the 48-hour course where the convicted individual will stay the night in a hotel or motel where the class is taught. This is a reality education class that provides participants with insight and instruction on how to avoid placing oneself in a position where they may drive drunk, victim impact panels as well as other insight into the effects of alcohol on the human body. As part of the class, the participants are not permitted to leave although force is not and may not be used to prevent a person from leaving the premises. If they do elect to leave their failure to complete the program is reported to any applicable court or probation officer as well as the Department of Transportation. Successful completion of this class can be counted against the mandatory minimum 48 hours of jail time on a first offense so long as the Court enters the appropriate order. The average cost of this class is approximately $325.
The final non-custodial drinking drivers program is only available in a select few counties. It is the 96 hour OWI 2nd Offense program which is a more intensive version of the 48-hour course and is specifically targeted to the 2nd time offender. With the proper court order successful completion of this class may be credited against 4 of the mandatory minimum 7 days in jail for a second offense OWI charge. The average cost for this class is approximately $650.
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