I was arrested in Quincy, MA for OUI, first offense. No accident, no injuries. If I resolve my case with a plea, can I do the alcohol substance abuse education program in Florida where I live? Also, I am scheduled to leave the country for Italy next month for a few weeks, can I leave the country before my case gets resolved or do I need the courts permission? If I resolve my case before my scheduled trip, can I leave the country before starting the alcohol substance abuse education program? Or will I need the permission of the probation dept? Thank You.
Let us take one question at a time. (1) You say "Currently I am living in Massachusetts" and "can I do the .. program in Florida where I live". Well where DO you live, Florida or Massachusetts? I am going to assume you have been living in Massachusetts but are moving or returning to Florida where you will live. In that event the Massachusetts Statute specifically permits you to do the program in Florida, so long as the program is comparable to our Massachusetts Program, which it is. Because the statute anticipates and provides for your situation (an out of state resident getting an OUI in Massachusetts) getting permission to travel to FLORIDA, where you live should not be a problem. (Judge Coven, the presiding Judge in Quincy will appreciate your lawyer filing a Motion for Permission to do the Program in Florida - accompanied by paperwork from the Florida program showing that they are an approved dui program in Florida - as well as a Motion to waive condition 9 on the standard Massachusetts probation contract. Condition 9 is the condition that you cannot leave the state.) In your situation these requests are routinely granted. (2) The trip to Italy.: Unless at your arraignment in Quincy District Court the Judge ordered you not to leave the country, then you are free to travel anywhere in the world. The fact that you have a pending case - unless the judge specifically ordered otherwise as a condition of your release - is NOT an impediment to travel as far as Quincy District Court is concerned. If you resolve the case before you travel then you may want to have your lawyer file a Motion for permission to travel to Italy. Again condition 9 says "You cannot leave Massachusetts without the express permission or your probation officer and without signing a waiver of rendition"; however, if condition 9 is waived then you can leave Massachusetts. However, at the airport if Homeland Security learns that you are on probation, Homeland Security may not let you leave the country; this is not likely but it could happen. The safer course may be to take your trip to Italy and then dispose of the case. Good Luck.
If you are out on bond or pre-trial release, you should first check with your bondsman and then with your attorney. If you enter a plea and are placed on probation, you will need to talk to your probation supervisor regarding transferring your probation to Florida and completing the substance abuse education program through a Florida provider. Your attorney should be able to give you more guidance regarding the procedures used in your jurisdiction.
What you need to do is hire a criminal defense attorney. The attorney will investigate all the facts and will be able to advise you regarding the possibilities.
R. Jason de Groot, Esq. We do not have an attorney-client relationship. I am not your lawyer. The statements I make do not constitute legal advice. Any statements made by me are based upon the limited facts you have presented, and under the premise that you will consult with a local attorney. This is not an attempt to solicit business. This disclaimer is in addition to any disclaimers that this website has made. I am only licensed in Florida.
If you accept a plea, you can complete the alcohol education program in Florida however this means you will be subject to the Florida license loss too, as they will suspend your license once they hear of your MA license loss- and this could be an issue if the Florida penalties are more stringent than MA.
If your case is still open, there should technically be nothing restricting your travel overseas. However if you are on probation it is recommended that you ask permission from the court. Technically speaking, the court does not allow overseas travel but there is always a chance they will allow it so it's always worth asking.
As you used this website for legal advice, I am going to assume you haven't yet spoken about your case with an OUI attorney. I would highly recommend doing so, as we can give generic advice on here but at the end of the day each case has different circumstantial factors that could potentially work to benefit your outcome. Please speak with an attorney before resolving your case, although a first offense is a misdemeanor, an attorney could potentially negotiate the outcome of your case- possibly even a resolution as favorable as a dismissal. You also mentioned not having any third party injuries involved so your case might definitely be worth fighting at trial. You should discuss your defenses with an attorney and then make a decision about whether to resolve with a plea or not once you have all this information. You might have a good shot at winning your case.
First, you should have an attorney and that attorney should be the only one advising you. Second, only your probation officer can approve and allow you to move after you are placed on probation.
For a "First Offender's Disposition", you will be on probation for one-year and under the terms and conditions of a normal probation you are not allowed to even travel outside of the state, let alone move out of the state. So again, you will need to seek and obtain permission from your probation officer before you will be allowed to relocated to Florida.
Second, Florida law and Massachusetts law are different, and while you may be able to take the mandatory alcohol classes in Florida, you will have to show your Probation Officer that the classes in Florida are similar to the classes offered in Massachusetts.
I wish you luck,
Anthony Rao, Esq.
The above response is NOT legal advice, and is NOT intended to be legal advice. No Attorney-Client relationship is created through the above answer, and any communication between us is not protected by attorney-client privilege.
Sign up to receive a 3-part series of useful information and legal advice about DUIs.
Our Rating is calculated using information the lawyer has included on their profile in addition to the information we collect from state bar associations and other organizations that license legal professionals. Attorneys who claim their profiles and provide Avvo with more information tend to have a higher rating than those who do not.What determines Avvo Rating?Experience & background
Years licensed, work experience, educationLegal community recognition
Peer endorsements, associations, awardsLegal thought leadership
Publications, speaking engagementsDiscipline