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DUI/DWI Lawyers in Charles County, MD Explain Alcohol Education Classes

If you have been searching for the “best DUI/DWI lawyers in Charles County or for “Maryland DUI attorneys near me,” call us here at the Law Office of Robert Castro. Our number is (301) 705-5137. We are available around the clock, 24/7. We are seasoned and skilled Maryland criminal defense lawyers. We offer DUI/DWI criminal defense in Southern Maryland cities like Waldorf, Maryland, La Plata, Maryland, Clinton, Maryland and Bowie, Maryland. In this article, our criminal defense attorneys provide some information on Maryland “DUI classes” (which, more officially, are called Maryland Alcohol Education Programs).

What are Maryland Alcohol Education Classes?

Maryland Alcohol Education Programs (“AEP”) are organized through the State of Maryland but are actually taught by private companies. The companies must be certified by the State and are re-certified on a regular basis. In Maryland, the AEP is a twelve-hour program of classes provided over several sessions. As described here, AEP classes are “… intended to provide rehabilitation for individuals convicted of driving under the influence of alcohol (DUI) or driving while intoxicated (DWI).”

The fees charged for in-person classes are set by private companies but are generally about $200 for the 12-hour course. There are some classes that are offered online, so they can be taken from home or other locations where internet services are available. However, as discussed in more detail below, we here at the Law Office of Robert Castro strongly recommend AGAINST taking online AEP classes.

The content of the classes is mandated by the State. The course content of AEP classes is detailed and extensive and generally includes topics of these kinds:

  • Laws and legal rules with respect to driving and drinking
  • Impact of alcohol on the body and the body’s motor activity
  • Stressors and psychological reasons for drinking and how to overcome/avoid
  • Strategies for avoiding driving while drunk or under the influence
  • And more

Will I Be Required to Attend AEP Classes?

In some circumstances, yes, a person can be required to attend AEP classes as part of the court’s sentencing. As indicated in the link above, AEP classes are commonly ordered in three types of circumstances:

  • When ordered by a District Court judge
  • When ordered by an Administrative Law Judge in the Office of Administrative Hearings and
  • When a person applies for a new driver’s license after the original license was revoked due to an alcohol-related incident

Can I Take AEP Classes Voluntarily?

Yes. If you have been arrested on a Maryland DUI/DWI, it is highly recommended that the criminal defendant voluntarily agree to attend an in-person AEP program. Upon successful completion of the classes, the prosecuting attorneys and the judge will be informed by your criminal defense attorneys. Voluntarily taking in-person AEP classes has three very important advantages in a Maryland DUI/DWI case: the prosecuting attorney and judge will see that you were proactive, that you took the charges seriously, and that you are committed to reform/rehabilitation. Each of these can lead to leniency in the form of dropped charges or a lesser sentence from the judge. Note that in our experience, online classes are given much less credence by the prosecuting attorneys and the judges. Online classes require much less time and personal investment and involve no face-to-face interaction. Thus, we strongly recommend the in-person classes.

Contact Waldorf, Maryland Criminal Defense Lawyer Robert Castro Today

This article has been provided by the Law Office of Robert Castro. For more information or questions, contact our office to speak to an experienced Maryland criminal defense lawyer at (301) 705-5137. We are Waldorf, MD, Criminal Defense lawyers. Our address is 2670 Crain Highway, Waldorf, MD 20601.