The Kansas DUI Diversion Program
Under some conditions, the State of Kansas offers first-time DUI offenders, who have not caused injury or death, the option to enter a diversion program. This program is unique to Kansas, allowing the DUI offender and the State to enter into an agreement which requires the DUI offender to complete certain requirements within a specified time period. If the offender meets the requirements, their DUI charges will be dismissed.
The Kansas DUI Diversion program is considered a privilege rather than a right, with no presumption that a defendant will qualify unless they can prove this program will “serve the ends of justice and the interests of the community.”
Who qualifies for Kansas DUI Diversion Program?
Many DUI defendants will qualify for the Kansas DUI Diversion Program. Those who will not qualify, however, include the following:
-Offenders previously convicted or diverted of DUI or DWI (even if the case was expunged). -Offenders who were previously convicted of a felony offense. -Offenders who caused personal injury or death. -Offenders with a BAC of 0.24% of higher. -Offenders who were arrested with one or more children under the age of 14 in the vehicle. -Offenders who were charged with other criminal offenses not including traffic violations. -Offenders who were arrested while driving with a suspended or revoked license (exceptions exist). -Offenders who had a commercial driver’s license at the time of the offense. -Offenders who have holds from other jurisdictions or law enforcement agencies for separate legal actions.
How is the eligibility for diversion determination made?
If you are arrested for a Kansas DUI you can talk to your DUI lawyer about whether or not you may qualify for the Kansas DUI Diversion program. To qualify for the program you may have your case reviewed by the Diversion Committee. After the committee reviews your case, they will make a recommendation to the District Attorney.
The District Attorney will make the final determination for your eligibility. You will have no recourse to challenge a determination unless more material information for your case is presented to the D.A.
Kansas Diversion Program Requirements
Assuming you accept the Diversion Program Agreement, you have agreed to certain conditions. Specifically, you have waived your rights to a speedy trial and a trial before your peers. You have also agreed to the facts of the case.
The program will outline a specific term limit for the program in which time you agree not to break the law and to report to a court-appointed program coordinator as required by the court. You must also purchase and maintain the appropriate insurance, participate in a drug and alcohol program, and pay all necessary fines, fees, and court costs.
The court may also impose additional requirements, including maintaining employment, living at a specific residence, participating in additional recommended programs, receiving proper counseling, and following all license suspension requirements.
What happens after I complete the Kansas DUI Diversion Program?
Assuming you complete the requirement for the Kansas DUI Diversion program, the District Attorney will move to have the criminal charges dismissed with prejudice. If you do not complete the program within the specified timeframe, however, the District Attorney can reinstate the original complaint and initiate criminal proceedings.
What if I decide not to participate in the Kansas DUI Diversion program?
If you do not qualify for the program, if you choose not participate in the Diversion Program, or you attempt the program and fail, assuming you are a first-time DUI offender, you can expect to spend 48 hours to 6 months in jail (or 100 hours of community service), pay fines between $500 and $1,000, lose your driver’s license for thirty days, and be required to participate in an alcohol evaluation and treatment program.
The Kansas DUI Diversion program may be time-consuming, but it offers a rare chance for a DUI offender to complete certain requirements and potentially have a DUI charge dismissed without the life-time consequences of a DUI charge and conviction.