Drinking Driver Program (DDP)
The New York Department Of Motor Vehicles operates the Drinking Driver Program, (DDP) which is a mandatory alcohol and drug rehabilitation program that all motorists who are convicted of a DWAI, DWI, or any other alcohol related charge are required to attend in order to obtain a conditional license, or to obtain a conditional privilege if the motorist has an out of state license. The DDP is required in order for the driver to be reinstated to full unrestricted driving privileges after their sentence has been completed.
When your license has been suspended or revoked arising out of a DWI conviction, you must report to the Department of Motor Vehicles to enroll in the DDP. In order to enroll, you will have to present proof of identity with your signature. Since you will not have your physical driver’s license at this time (it will have been taken by the sentencing Court), you must provide proof of identity other than a driver’s license. The Department of Motor Vehicles has a list of acceptable proofs of identity on its website, http://www.dmv.ny.gov/index.htm or at the DMV Call center, also found on its website.
The DDP is a seven week program which is comprised of a total of 16 hours of coursework. The cost as of June of 2011 is $225.00 with a $75.00 enrollment fee. During the classes, to paraphrase the DMV, the goals are to “examine the reason for the arrest and help the driver make better decisions in the future.” Upon successful completion of the DDP, a “Notice of Completion” will be sent to the DMV. Depending on your record at that time, you may then be eligible for full reinstatement of driving privileges, unless there was a chemical test refusal or you were under 21 years of age when the alcohol related conviction happened, for example.
Significantly, if you have been convicted or pled guilty to any drinking and driving charge within the previous 5 years, you are not eligible to take the drinking driver program, and are not eligible to obtain a conditional license. A conditional license allows you to drive to and from work, to college accredited programs, to take and pick up children from day care, to medical appointments for you and your children, and to Court-ordered programs, including the DDP, MADD Victim’s Impact Panel and for alcohol assessment, evaluation and treatment. The Court may order you to attend the DDP even if you are not eligible, but in that scenario, completion of the program will not entitle you to obtain a conditional license or a conditional privilege for out of state licensed motorists.
At the White Plains, New York Law Office of Mark A. Siesel, we have the necessary experience and background to provide our clients with aggressive and knowledgeable representation in fighting the charges against them, which threaten their livelihoods and financial stability. We strive to obtain the best possible outcome for our clients either by fighting the charges at trial, or resolution of the charges in a plea bargain carefully negotiated with the DA’s office. Our goal is always to reduce as much as possible the impact of any criminal charges, license suspensions, and fines. We recognize how vital our clients’ driver’s licenses and driving privileges are to their livelihoods and financial stability, and do everything legally possible to assist our client’s in obtaining conditional licenses or privileges.