This is what I read online as far as 3rd DUI PENALTY:
• 120 days to 1 year in jail
*(CVC23176) Minimum period of incarceration is reduced to 30 days in jail, if defendant requests and judge orders defendant into a specified school programs. Also see Health & Safety Code 11837.4(a)
The minimum punishment is still 120 days for a third DUI within 10 years in California per VC Section 23548, but if a person enters and completes a specified program the minimum can be 30 days.
How that time is served, however, varies widely -- and sometimes dramatically -- across California's counties. And by that, I mean actual jail time -- where a person is confined in a jail -- varies widely. Many judges in different counties allow alternative sentencing (e.g. work project, electronic monitoring) or credit for in-patient programs.
Either way, a person facing a third DUI should make an unflinchingly honest personal assessment of his/her ability to continue to drink alcohol. In my opinion, some form of treatment is indicated. Judges often give credit for residential treatment (as opposed to outpatient), and sometimes for outpatient programs.
Check with an experienced DUI attorney in your county. I recommend starting with the California DUI Lawyers Association (CDLA). Google it. A felony DUI is just one drive away for a person with a chronic drinking problem. By the time you've been convicted three times, it is well past time to address the underlying issue through a recovery program, counseling, etc.
I believe you are referring to the little know 30/30 program. This is where the defendant serves 30 days and then must complete a 30 month alcohol program.
This is a sometimes tricky maneuver and not many attorneys (even some veteran DUI attorneys) are even aware that this is an option.
This is why, if you or a loved one are facing such a charge, you owe it to yourself to get the best possible representation you can.
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