For a first, second, or subsequent DUI, the majority of courts require drivers to undergo a drug and alcohol clinical evaluation. After two or more DUI's within ten years, the State requires the driver to complete a clinical assessment to reinstate their license. This clinical evaluation is different from DUI School. The evaluation determines whether you need additional treatment. Completion of a clinical assessment may be required before the Court will issue a limited permit. Many people are nervous to complete an evaluation because of the potential that they will be recommended more treatment. However, this is not the case for everyone. Do not let nerves stop you from getting an evaluation. Taking steps to completing an evaluation before your hearing can make a significant difference in your case. It demonstrates that you are willing to take responsibility for your actions. It does not, however, necessarily imply an admission of guilt. Some people worry that having a clinical evaluation means they cannot fight their case. Nothing is further from the truth. Georgia DUI Lawyers never will use the fact that someone has had an evaluation against his or her own client's interests.
What is the Clinical Evaluation?
The evaluation is a one on one session between you and a substance abuse professional. They will ask you questions about your background, family life, drinking habits, and other personal details. After the evaluation, the professional will write up a report based on your responses. They will determine whether or not treatment is needed and if so, how much. The Court will order you to comply with the suggestions from the evaluator. Sometimes they may not recommend any further treatment. Other times, they may recommend you go to one or more of the following:
- Random drug screenings
- AA meetings
- Substance abuse education classes
- Substance abuse counseling sessions
- Inpatient or outpatient treatment program
- Victim impact panel
When Should I Do an Evaluation?
Our office encourages clients to complete this evaluation before going to court for your case. This helps demonstrate to the prosecutor that you are putting forth a good faith effort to resolve your case. Further, this gives you time to discuss the results of your evaluation with your attorney beforehand. If no further treatment is ordered, that is also a great argument your attorney can present to the prosecutor. On the other hand, if additional treatment is required, this gives you time to evaluate your options before attending court.
How Do I Get an Evaluation?
The Georgia Department of Driver Services has a website or drivers to search and find an approved clinical evaluation near them. We also have some preferred providers we recommend. It is important to our Georgia DUI Attorneys to make sure that our clients are treated fairly.
No matter when you need to attend, there is a provider that can accommodate your schedule. There are plenty of options for nights and weekends and tons of locations throughout Georgia. If you have any concerns about finding a site, our office has multiple places we can recommend to you. Most importantly, make sure the person is a licensed Drug and Alcohol Clinical Evaluator.
Our office understands that undergoing a clinical evaluation can be nerve-racking. However, we also appreciate the benefits it can have on your case. If you have any questions regarding drug or alcohol evaluations, please do not hesitate to contact us. We have extensive experience with Georgia Clinical Evaluators and are here for you. Never face severe Georgia DUI Penalties without first contacting our office for a free case evaluation.