In Pennsylvania, the Accelerated Rehabilitative Disposition (ARD) program offers non-violent, first-time offenders an opportunity to avoid a conviction and focus on rehabilitation instead. A criminal defense attorney in East Norriton can help you understand if your DUI or drug-related offense could meet the ARD program criteria.
At McKenzie Law Firm, P.C., our East Norriton ARD program lawyer handles applications for our clients regularly. Many of our clients facing first-time DUI charges qualify. We manage their applications, help them gain acceptance into the program, and ensure they meet the criteria to complete it. We can assess your case and determine if this might be a good option for you.
Let Our East Norriton ARD Program Lawyer Help You Understand Your Options
When you call on our team to assess your DUI arrest and represent your best interests, the ARD program may be an option. If you face charges but do not have a criminal record, participation in ARD could allow you to focus on rehabilitation and diversion.
Each program participant has specific terms they must meet to complete the program. These will depend on the program administrator, the circumstances of the arrest, and the needs of the participant. Not all applicants are accepted into the program. Those who are should be ready to:
- Undergo a drug or alcohol evaluation program
- Complete drug or alcohol education or treatment as recommended
- Attend Alcohol Highway Safe Driving School or similar classes
- Perform community service hours
- Report regularly to the Montgomery County Probation Department
- Pass all required alcohol or drug testing
Upon completion of these terms, the court will withdraw the charges against you. Your criminal record will show the charges and the dismissal. You will not have a conviction and can tell potential employers, landlords, and others that you have never been convicted.
If you need a completely clear criminal record, it might be possible to get them to expunge the record of your arrest. Our criminal defense lawyer can manage the expungement process for you, too.
Our East Norriton Lawyers Know Who Is a Good Fit for the ARD Program
At McKenzie Law Firm, P.C., our DUI attorneys have experience with helping our clients apply for and get accepted into the ARD program in East Norriton and elsewhere in Montgomery County. We understand that many first-time DUI offenders could qualify and consider this an option when developing a plan to help them manage their case.
We assess each party’s case and criminal history to determine if we believe they might be a good candidate for ARD. Not all applicants will be accepted into the program. We will also help our clients explore other options for getting a fair outcome in their cases.
To qualify for ARD based on your East Norriton arrest, you cannot have:
- A previous DUI
- A prior criminal conviction, under most circumstances
- Previous enrollment in the ARD program or another pre-trial diversion program
- Involvement in a DUI injury accident
- A minor under age 14 when they were arrested for DUI
- Pending charges for a violent crime or weapons offense
- Previous accusations of stalking, domestic violence, sex crimes, or other serious offenses
ARD participation may be available to many who face first-time DUI charges for alcohol, drugs, or other related offenses. Our attorneys can assess your options during your initial consultation with our team. If you are a good candidate for ARD based on your non-violent crime, we may help you qualify.
Our East Norriton Lawyers Understand the Benefits of the ARD Program
When we represent clients facing first-time DUI charges, we often recommend the ARD program because it has several significant benefits for participants over a conviction. Participants in the ARD program must meet several stringent terms to complete the process, but they are not as life-interrupting or time-consuming as the possible sentence for a guilty verdict.
A criminal conviction in a DUI case could mean up to one year in jail, an extended driver’s license suspension, and having a criminal record going forward. When you complete the ARD program, the charges are withdrawn. You could have your record expunged.
This will not affect your ability to get a job, rent an apartment, get a professional license, or otherwise pass a background check. A DUI conviction could. A conviction will require explaining your criminal record and discussing your arrest and charges anytime you need to pass a background check.
Most ARD participants continue going to school or working throughout the process. This might not be possible if they had to serve jail time or could not drive following a conviction.
Le Our East Norriton Lawyer Help You Navigate the ARD Process
When one of our clients is accepted into the Montgomery County ARD program, we ensure they understand the terms and what they need to do to succeed. We not only file their application and represent them throughout the process to qualify, but we also continue to monitor their case. Once they complete ARD, we can manage the expungement of their record.
When a participant fails to comply with the terms of ARD, the courts could proceed with the charges, and they could face a conviction. The District Attorney’s Office could remove a participant from the program for facing additional arrests, having a bench warrant issued against them, absconding, or failing to complete all requirements. If this occurs in your case, our team can help you determine your next steps, including representing you at trial if necessary.
Discuss the East Norriton ARD Program With Our Team Today
McKenzie Law Firm, P.C. can help you understand your options and fight for a fair outcome in your case if you face charges in East Norriton, PA. We handle DUI cases regularly and help our clients apply for the ARD program when possible.
Contact us to discuss your case today. We have someone available to talk to you now.