DUI School in Nevada is an 8-hour drug and alcohol education course required of all first-time misdemeanor DUI defendants who get convicted. It may be completed online or in-person, and the typical price is around $100.
Defendants with high blood alcohol levels (BAC) may also be ordered to complete the Coroner's DUI program. This is where defendants have to view pictures of dead drunk driving victims as a deterrent to driving under the influence again.
Defendants who fail to complete DUI School by the deadline risk getting sentenced to jail for up to 6 months. But judges may be willing to give defendants more time to finish the class if they tell the court in advance that they need an extension.
In this article our Las Vegas Nevada DUI defense attorneys discuss:
- 1. What is DUI School in NV?
- 2. Do I have to do it if I plead to reckless driving?
- 3. What is it like?
- 4. Can I do it online?
- 5. How long is it?
- 6. What does it cost?
- 7. What if I live out of state?
- 8. What if I never finish the program?
- 9. What schools are there?
- 10. What are the other drunk driving penalties in NV?
DUI School is an eight (8) hour course warning of the dangers of driving under the influence. Nevada judges order all first-time DUI offenders to take the class. Depending on the case, judges typically give defendants three to six months to complete the course.
Defendants may attend the course either online or in an actual classroom. After a defendant pleads guilty (or "no contest") to driving under the influence in Las Vegas, the court clerk will give the defendant information about where and how he/she can complete the program.
Note that second-time drunk driving offenders are usually not sentenced to the eight-hour DUI School. Instead, they may be ordered to complete a longer drug and alcohol education course. Meanwhile, defendants suffering from addiction may be eligible to do DUI Court, which is a very intensive rehabilitation program that spans months or years.
1.1. Coroner's DUI Program
Certain DUI defendants in Clark County are ordered to complete not only a DUI class but also a Coroner's DUI Program. Judges typically impose this extra penalty if the defendant's BAC is .18 or higher.
The Coroner's Program is done in person at the Coroner's Office. Students are required to view images of corpses of victims in drunk or drugged driving collisions. Students do not witness an actual autopsy.
Probably. Even when the defendant's charge gets lessened to reckless driving, judges still impose first-time DUI penalties including a DUI class.
The online course is a series of lessons followed by review questions and a final exam at the end.
The in-class program is a combination of
- class discussions,
- in-class exercises,
- video presentations, and
- a final exam.
The final exam is in multiple-choice format. Students who do not pass can usually take it one more time without having to pay extra.
Yes. Most defendants elect to do the online course because they can complete it at home at their own convenience.
Defendants without internet access have the option of completing the program in a regular classroom.
Nevada judges typically order the eight (8) hour program for a first-time misdemeanor DUI.
Occasionally the judge may order a 16- or 24-hour drug and alcohol course if the defendant's BAC was particularly high or there are other extenuating circumstances.
In person classroom programs are completed in one Saturday. They usually last from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
The online course is meant to span eight hours of work. But unlike in the classroom, the online course can be paused and completed at the defendant's own pace.
Costs for the course vary by school and program:
DUI School classes
8 hour DUI Class (standard for a DUI 1st)
$89 - $185
16 hour Level 2 Drug/Alcohol Class
24 hour Level 3 Drug/Alcohol Class
Clark County Coroner's DUI Program
Yes. These programs can be done online from any location with internet access.
Out-of-state defendants without internet access may be able to do the class at a local classroom-style DUI program. They just have to get the Nevada court's permission ahead of time. A large percentage of Las Vegas defendants are tourists. So Nevada judges do try to accommodate out-of-state defendants' needs.
If the defendant is ordered to do a coroner's DUI program, the defendant may have to return to Las Vegas unless the Nevada court preapproves an equivalent course in the defendant's home state.
If the defendant has a good reason for not finishing the DUI class by the deadline, the judge may be willing to give him/her more time. This typically happens when:
- the defendant is too sick to take the class,
- the defendant is too busy with care-taking responsibilities to take the class, or
- the defendant is too impoverished to pay for the class
The judge is more likely to extend the defendant's deadline if the defendant or his/her attorney informs the court ahead of time why he/she will not be able to complete DUI Court. Judges are more hesitant to grant extra time after the deadline has passed.
8.1. Can I go to jail for not finishing DUI School?
Yes. When a defendant enters a guilty plea in a DUI case, the judge imposes a six (6) month suspended jail sentence. This means that the defendant will avoid incarceration only so long as he/she completes all the other sentencing terms, including DUI School.
If a defendant neglects to do the DUI class by the due date, the judge may impose this six-month sentence. That is why it is so important for defendants to tell the court ahead of time if they cannot do the DUI class by the deadline. Judges appreciate advanced notice and are more likely to grant an extension if the defendant gives them a good excuse.
Refer to our comprehensive list of Nevada DUI Schools for the names, websites, locations, costs, and other information about driving safety programs in Clark County and throughout the state. Three of the more popular online programs are:
Defendants need to make sure ahead of time that their particular court accepts the DUI class they wish to do. Most courts give defendants referrals to DUI Schools that they recognize.
In addition to the DUI class, the typical penalties for a first-time conviction of driving under the influence include:
- $400 - $1,000 in fines,
- Victim Impact Panel (a MADD lecture),
- An order to avoid further arrests and citations while the DUI case is open,
- Six (6) month suspended jail sentence, and
- 185-day driver's license revocation (a restricted license is available after 90 day with an ignition interlock device installed in the defendant's cars)
We are here to help
If you have been arrested for driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, call our Las Vegas criminal defense attorneys at 702-DEFENSE (702-333-3673). Our mission is to try to get your case dismissed or reduced to lesser charges so your record stays clean.
Arrested in California? Go to our article on California DUI School.
- NRS 484C.400.
- Id.; NRS 484C.320 - .340.
- See Scott Daniels, Coroner Program Aims to Stop Repeat Offenders on the Road, CBS Las Vegas Now; Clark County Coroner's Program Brochure.
- See e.g. Legal Rehab Services.
- See NRS 484C.400.