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Most people associate a DUI with driving under the influence of alcohol, but any substance that impairs your driving ability can lead to a charge. If you're arrested for a DUI due to drug use, the judge may order you to undergo a type of counseling called a drug assessment. But what is this assessment, and will there be consequences if you answer the questions honestly? Keep reading to find out more about what a drug evaluation means and what happens next.
What Is the Purpose of a Drug Assessment?
A drug assessment session seeks to understand your current risk for addiction and abuse. Your assigned counselor will ask you a series of questions about prior drug or alcohol abuse, your current usage patterns, your lifestyle, and your mental health. By the end of the session, the counselor will evaluate your present risk for drug abuse and present it to the court.
Why Is It Important to be Honest During a Drug Evaluation?
Sometimes, patients who walk into a drug assessment believe they should limit their answers to make their drug use seem less significant. This is an understandable response, but ultimately it only hurts you. These evaluations are not a punishment but an attempt to get an accurate reading of your addiction status. The counselor may find that you are at low, moderate, or high risk of drug abuse, which will impact the treatment plan crafted for you.
What Are the Possible Outcomes of a Drug Assessment?
The consequences of a DUI charge, especially for your first offense, prioritize making sure it doesn't happen again. Undergoing a drug assessment is the first step in a longer treatment process. Your personalized treatment plan reflects your individual habits and needs. It should not, however, impact your sentencing, so there's no benefit in lying. It's much better to work with your counselor and receive treatment to prevent another DUI.
What Happens After a Drug Evaluation?
Once the evaluation is finished, your required treatment will vary by state law. You may, for example, be ordered to attend Alcoholics Anonymous meetings, a rehabilitation clinic, or educational courses. You might also need to pass regular drug and alcohol testing. Although the days and weeks following a DUI charge can be frightening and stressful, these systems are in place to help you overcome addiction and avoid legal trouble in the future. Contact your local drug assessment provider today to ask questions and learn which documents you'll need for a successful session and later treatment.