What is Mandatory Community Service?
A DUI charge will not only mean fines and possible jail time. There are lots of other requirements and penalties that come with a DUI conviction. Before you consider whether or not you plan to fight your charges of driving under the influence, and have an Atlanta DUI lawyer defend your rights in court, make sure you understand all the consequences of a conviction, including mandatory community service.
The fines and fees associated with a DUI will add up, and in the end cost thousands of dollars in additional insurance premiums. But a DUI conviction will also mean a big time commitment in order to complete the requirements. This can include a few days in school as part of a DUI Alcohol or Drug Use Risk Reduction Plan. A DUI will also mean community service. For a first time DUI, you may have to serve 40 hours of mandatory community service. After a second or third DUI, that increases to days of community service instead of hours.
Before you start serving community service hours, make sure that the hours will count towards your court ordered service. Not all volunteer work qualifies. You may have spent a week volunteering with a local group only to find out that it doesn't count, and you'll have to start all over again. Many churches and shelters will be able to offer volunteer opportunities, such as food service programs for the hungry, or working in the church thrift show sorting and selling items. If you are unsure of whether an organization qualifies for your community service, ask your lawyer or contact the court for guidance of where to find qualifying volunteer opportunities.
After contacting a qualifying community service organization, you should inform the group that you are completing court-mandated community service related to you DUI charge. If the group agrees to your service, make sure an official with the organization will be able to sign off on your hours. Keep track of the dates and times, so that you will have a record of the community service hours completed.
In many cases, even without a conviction, completing community service work can be beneficial to your DUI case. This is a good way to show the judge in your case that you are taking the case seriously, which can help to negotiate a better plea bargain, or to argue for a lesser punishment. In any case, community service work can be an opportunity for you to get involved in your community and help others in need.
Georgia DUI Defense Lawyer
With so much at stake in a Georgia DUI case, you need to seriously consider all the consequences of a conviction. But remember, just because you got arrested for a DUI does not have to mean that you should be convicted. Contact our office today, so we can discuss all the defenses available, what option you have, and what a DUI may mean for your ability to keep your driver's license. We will fight the charges against you, to make sure you get the justice you deserve.