DUI Community Service Requirements
Most DUI-DWI statutes require some community service work as a part of their mandatory DUI punishment scheme. Most of these statutes require a minimum number of community service hours, depending on whether your DUI conviction is a first DUI offense, second DUI offense, or subsequent offense within your state’s “lookback” period. For example, in Georgia, the lookback period is five years from the date of DUI arrest to the next date of DUI arrest. In South Carolina, the lookback period is 10 years.
Nearly a dozen states have eliminated “lookback” periods, and will include your entire driving history. This trend of reviewing your lifetime driving history will likely spread to other states in the next decade.
Should I Start DUI Community Service Now?
A top-rated DUI attorney will recommend that you begin doing community service hours right away. Getting these hours done at a charitable or non-profit organization may provide your DWI attorney with a bargaining tool with which to approach your prosecutor.
An additional reason that your DUI attorney may tell you to start community service hours is that your prompt and early commitment to do public service may be beneficial to you if you are required to go to trial. By showing the trial judge that you “took the bull by the horns” and got involved in a DUI-DWI school, got an alcohol evaluation and treatment, and performed community service hours, these proactive steps help mitigate your punishment at sentencing.
Another benefit to performing community service in advance might be that the TYPE of service you are permitted to perform on your own might be far better than the work the judge may order you to perform after sentencing. Many jurisdictions have very unpleasant jobs for their “county programs,” including cleaning out the dog pound, collecting garbage or cleaning public toilets.
Make sure you choose a knowledgeable DUI-DWI specialist who knows when, how, and where to perform community service hours in order to get full credit from your judge when you later appear in court to resolve your case. Most courts require detailed records of all community service hours.
DUI Community Service Can Be Enjoyable!
Many people who get involved in community service find that they ENJOY it. You may find that even when your term of service is over, you continue to provide volunteer hours for the same non-profit organization in the future. Make the best of your DUI community service hours by meeting new people at the location, talking to other people who were sent there by the judge, and helping each other overcome any possible issues with alcohol or drug addiction.