A DWI conviction in New York comes with several special conditions, most notably probation and license suspension. These conditions place you under supervision while you drive for three to five years, depending on whether you are convicted of a misdemeanor DWI (most common) or a felony DWI.
DWI probation is a supervision period after a DWI conviction. Probation is designed to provide restrictions, guidance, and treatment that aid in rehabilitation and help you return to driving safely.
The terms of your probation are determined by the Probation Department and the court. Depending on the charges and sentencing, common DWI probation terms may include:
How Long Does DWI Probation Last?
Probation lasts for 3 years for misdemeanor DWI, including a first DWI conviction. Felony DWI probation lasts for five years. It’s quite common for misdemeanor probation to be terminated early after 18 months for those who show they are compliant with their probation officer’s directives, show no signs of alcohol dependence, and have no previous arrest history.
Probation Violation in New York
If you do not adhere to the very specific terms of your probation, your probation officer can “violate” you on your probation. This means the probation officer calls the judge to inform the court of the probation violation. The case is restored on the court’s calendar and you will be required to appear before your sentencing judge and have a Violation of Probation hearing.
The Probation Department may ask the court to remove you from probation and sentence you to jail. The judge will decide first whether you violated probation and what penalties will be imposed. The court can require that you be incarcerated in jail, your probation may be restored, or your probation may be restored with new, stricter conditions. This depends a great deal on your legal representation, how you violated probation, and the judge. Some judges are more lenient whereas others routinely send people to jail for violating DWI probation.
If you are convicted of a DWI, you can expect you be on probation for a minimum of 18 months. Your license will also be revoked for a minimum of 6 months, although it is possible to qualify for a conditional license to drive to and from work, among other approved places. If you are facing a DWI charge, it’s important to seek representation from an experienced DWI attorney in New York as soon as possible to protect your rights and begin building your defense.
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