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Can jail time be avoided or negociated down to a treatment center or house arrest on a 3rd dwi in Florida?

Merritt Island, FL |
Attorney answers 3


By statute, the judge has the option and DISCRETION to sentence a person to inpatient treatment center. Since it is a third DUI, inpatient treatment would have to be at least 30 days. However, oftentimes the judge will defer to an evaluator and/or the judge will require many months in an inpatient treatment center. Of course, treatment is always a better option for those motivated to seek it. So talk to your lawyer about this option.


Mr. Epifanio always has good anwers and shares his knowlege. The Judge ultimately has to go for this idea because he or she is the judge, but the State Attorney (prosecutor) will probably have to go along with this idea to. The State Attorney could say yes and the judge no, or the State Attorney could say no, and the judge say yes. So it is up to the judge but usually the judge does not want to go against the prosecutor and the prosecutor does not want to go against the judge. The two of them usually, but not always have a better relationship that than the defense attorney. This is because the judge usually sees the same few prosecutors all the time, but see many different defense attorneys. It is one of those don't *&^# where you eat sort of deals. Understand?


As stated above it is possible but can be troublesome to accomplish. I have found that a really solid presentation to the court will usually get the job done.

By solid presentation, I mean a treatment plan that's typed out as far as duration and follow-up. Show family support, which includes a showing that you have finances to accomplish what you propose, that you have solid housing lined up afterwards, safe and legal transportation, and otherwise a solid and loving support system.

A record of attending AA or NA meetings, testimony from a sponsor or mentor.

You need to eliminate every possible anticipated objection to your plan as best you can going in and have a lawyer who can bring it all together. There is likely more to be added to this, but you get the idea.

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