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Understanding the New York DWI Alcohol-Drug Evaluation Process
It is likely that you will need to undergo a drug/alcohol screen/evaluation for your New York DWI arrest for the following three reasons:
1. According to NYS law, an alcohol/drug screening and evaluation is mandatory if your BAC (blood alcohol concentration) (as measured by a breath test) is 0.15 or higher at the time of your arrest.
2. It is often helpful to have your attorney provide a drug/alcohol evaluation prior to negotiating pleas to your charges. The results of the evaluation may indicate one of two things: (a) your behavior on the night of the arrest was a one-time event, and not a pattern of alcohol abuse behavior, or (b) it may indicate that you are now choosing to actively address your drug and/or alcohol use problem.
3. Alcohol screening/evaluation is part of the DMV’s DDP (Drinking Driver Program) and must be performed to obtain conditional driving privileges. This is true whether your final plea is to a DWAI, DWI or ADWI. Completion of the program is predicated upon compliance with any treatment recommendations made by an OASAS (Office of Alcohol and Substance Abuse Services) certified provider. They have a great website to find providers in your area, just put OASAS into Google.
are Three things Before your alcohol screening/assessment you must:
one: To ease your fears and give you a better idea of the types of screening questions asked by the MAST (Michigan Alcohol Screening Test), it is available online. The Alcohol Screening in the DDP program is a questionnaire/form to determine if you need further evaluation/evaluation from a provider.
Two: You should be prepared to be honest and truthful with the assessor. It is important to your long-term health and wellness that if alcohol and/or drugs are the cause of your current criminal charges, the underlying causes can be addressed.
Note: Although DWI recidivism rates are very low (approximately 3-4%), the risks to self and others from another incident of driving while under the influence of any drug or substance can be significant. In NYS, a second DWI arrest within a ten-year period is a Class E felony, and the prosecution seeks a prison sentence of 1 to 3 years.
Three: You must be willing to follow all the recommended treatments. You have the right to a second evaluation/opinion. This second alcohol assessment and final result is binding. The court will want proof of completion of any treatment programs recommended and evaluated. If you receive a CD (conditional discharge) from the court, this will be one of the conditions of that discharge. If you fail to meet the court’s terms your case may be reopened and your failure will be considered a violation of the court’s order.
If your alcohol evaluation shows a clean “treatment not recommended” final finding that will help your attorney (Assistant District Attorney) show why your final sentence is not required. This report of no treatment by the evaluator can help your attorney get an ADWI (Aggravated DWI) charge where your BAC was .18 or higher possibly reduced to a “regular” BAC on a .08 DWI.
I hope this article sheds some much needed light on the DWI alcohol assessment process.
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