Frequently asked DUI Diversion questions
- What is DUII Diversion?
- If I enter the DUII Diversion program, how long will my alcohol/drug treatment program be?
- If I am in the DUII Diversion program, can I leave the state of Oregon?
- I just entered the DUII Diversion program, and I have to install an ignition interlock device (IID) in any vehicle I operate. Where do I find companies that install an Ignition Interlock Device?
- I know that the court will require me to install an IID (ignition interlock device) in any vehicle that I operate during the time I’m in the DUI Diversion program—but can other members of my family drive the car that has the device installed?
- The District Attorney’s Office is objecting to my DUII diversion entry. Does that mean I have to give up on entering diversion?
- What if I successfully complete my DUII diversion? Can I expunge/clear my record of the arrest and everything that goes along with that case?
You might be eligible for the diversion program for your DUII charge. Diversion is available only for your DUII charge, and not for any other charges you might be facing. A broad description of eligibility for diversion follows, but be aware that specific details about your case and your criminal history, if any, might impact your diversion eligibility. To be eligible for diversion, broadly, on the date you file the petition for entrance into the diversion program, you must not have been convicted of a DUII offense within the past 15 years. As well, you must not have participated in a similar driving while under the influence of intoxicants diversion program or other similar alcohol or drug rehabilitation program in the past 15 years. You must not hold a commercial driver's license on the date of the commission of the offense, or operated a commercial motor vehicle at the time at the time of the offense. There are other factors that could impact your eligibility for diversion--factors an attorney can help you with.
If you are eligible for diversion you can enter the diversion program. Primarily, diversion is a formal agreement you enter into with the court. If after entering a plea of guilty or no contest at the time of your diversion hearing, and you do all that the court requires you to do in a year, your DUII charge will be dismissed.
The court will require you, as part of the diversion agreement, to get a substance abuse evaluation and do whatever treatment that evaluation tells you to do. As well, you will need to go to a victim's impact panel, pay court fees, install an ignition interlock device on any vehicle you plan on driving during the diversion period, and agree to not use alcohol or drugs unless they are prescribed.
An Ignition Interlock Device is a device that is installed on the car that you drive--it requires you to blow into the machine, and it will only start your engine if your blood alcohol read is below a certain limit.
The length of your substance abuse treatment program will depend on several factors, including the initial assessment from the county evaluator’s office, the treatment program you choose to participate in, the frequency of your classes, and your success in completing your obligations.
What I tell folks is that treatment programs generally run 12 to 18 weeks, with a minimum of a 90-day clean and sober period verified by urine tests. With that said, the state requirements are in hours of class time, so if you spend one hour a week in a class, it will take much longer than if you spend three hours a week in class.
If you are only facing an Oregon DUI charge and you have entered the DUII Diversion program, you should be able to legally leave the state of Oregon. With that said, there are enough potential issues that you should first verify this with your attorney. Even if you are free to leave from the court’s perspective, be sure that your trips out of state are okayed with your treatment provider so that you don’t have unexcused absences from treatment. Be sure to also be mindful of the other DUI Diversion requirements you must abide by.
Please feel free to call us - the Reynolds Defense Firm has a list of vendors, including an ignition interlock device company (as well as attorneys, insurance agents, treatment providers, etc.) that we’ve developed relationships with and that we trust to do a good job for you. We jokingly call it our “who I would send my mom to” list – if you need anything related to a DUI arrest or conviction, or if you ever need an attorney in a different area of law, we have a trusted referral that can help.
You can also find a list of ignition interlock device companies available in the next link: IDD Installers
The answer is that yes – absent a specific court order saying otherwise, Oregon’s DUI laws currently allow anyone to drive a car that you have an interlock installed into. With that said, anyone operating that vehicle will have to use the interlock device in the same way as you.
One warning on this through – some IID companies automatically report a failure of the interlock system to the court or DUI evaluator’s office. This means that even if someone else tried to start your car with alcohol on their breath, you may be required to go to court to defend yourself.
The District Attorney’s Office may object to your diversion entry for many different reasons—perhaps they think your criminal history prevents your diversion entry, or perhaps you had children with you in the car during your DUII arrest. Just because the District Attorney’s Office is objecting to your diversion entry does not necessarily mean you cannot enter diversion. A lawyer can help you bring the proper challenges, if appropriate, to the District Attorney’s objection, and set a hearing in front of a Judge for the Judge to decide if you should enter diversion. If the state is objecting to your diversion entry, it is crucial for you to have a lawyer analyze that objection and help you decide if you should fight that objection. While the District Attorney’s Office can object to your diversion entry, it is a Judge who gets to make the final decision.
What if I successfully complete my DUII diversion? Can I expunge/clear my record of the arrest and everything that goes along with that case?
The short answer is no. Even if you are successful in diversion, you avoid a criminal conviction, but the record of your arrest and participation in the Diversion program still remains. Oregon law does not allow a person who has successfully completed a DUII diversion to expunge their record of the DUII (expungement means to clear all records of an arrest and later court process). However, a successful completion of Diversion means that you were not convicted of a criminal offense if you are asked that question in the future.