Can You Drink After a DUI?

Updated on 11/10/2021 / Under

After your DUI arrest, it can feel like things are never going to return to "normal", especially if you've been assigned probation or jail time. Once you are free to go home, however, you can be left with a lot of questions. When am I able to drive freely again? Can I drink? Do I have to have an alcohol monitor in my car or on my person? Because every single case is different, there aren't set answers for these questions, and internet searching can leave your knowledge lacking. 

If you've been arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol or driving while over the legal limit, it's important that you follow all rules you have been subjected to as precisely as possible, to avoid facing further punishment and/or charges.

Having an experienced DUI attorney on your side to walk you through the process, and explain the terms of your license suspension or loss of driving privileges, your probation, and any additional penalties you're facing is paramount. At the Law Offices of Naperville DUI Lawyer, we're here to answer any questions you might have, and make sure your misdemeanor DUI doesn't turn into anything more. 

Factors That Effect Your Elligibility to Drink

Unfortunately, there isn't an exact answer to the question "Can you drink after a DUI?" The answer to this question varies from case to case and is based upon the details of your case, and the consequences you are facing. 

In most simple, first offense cases, you will be allowed to drink again as soon as you are released from jail or the police station following your arrest. Just like before your arrest, you should not drink and drive, but you are able to drink at home, restaurants, bars, etc. This may change after you appear before a judge, but unless told otherwise you should be able to drink again.

Can You Drink After a DUI in Illinois

There are cases, though, if you have had multiple DUI cases for example, where you will be prohibited from drinking and/or driving before you ever appear before a judge. If you have had multiple DUI arrests, there are extenuating circumstances to your case, or you've been placed on probation, it is important to speak with your lawyer to make sure you haven't been prohibited from consuming alcohol before you do so. 

What are Your Probation Terms?

For a majority of first-time offenders, your first DUI arrest will not result in any jail time. This, of course, applies to those charged with a misdemeanor, not those charged with felony DUI. If you aren't assigned jail time, there is a good chance you will be placed on probation for up to a year. 

If you are placed on probation, some typical rules you can expect are: 

  • Drug and/or alcohol treatment via counseling or educational classes 
  • Drug testing 
  • You must stay with in the state and/or county 
  • You may not associate with others who are performing criminal acts or partaking in criminal behavior 
  • You must not be arrested 
  • Mental health therapy or counseling 
  • Weekly meetings with probation officer 
  • Serve outlined community service obligations

While these are basic rules, there are additional rules to which you may be required to comply. For example, if you are on probation after your second or third offense, and have been enrolled in court-ordered drug or alcohol rehab services, you will not be allowed to consume any alcohol during your treatment. 

Breaking any rules of your probation, such as being arrested during probation for drunk driving a second time or drinking if you are not allowed, will result in a probation violation. You will be taken to court and may be forced to submit to prison time in lieu of the probation you were previously placed on. It is important that you understand the terms of your probation, either through speaking with your probation officer or your criminal defense attorney. 

SCRAM Continuous Alcohol Monitoring 

In 2018, Illinois introduced new probation programs to handle repeat DUI offenders. Colloquially known as SCRAM (Secure Continuous Remote Ankle Monitor), this is a monitoring device placed on the ankles of repeat offenders and used as a condition of their bond or probation. These devices, similar to how house arrest ankle monitors work, send out alerts to your probation officer if alcohol is detected by the device. 

These devices work by examining samples of sweat from your skin anywhere from every 30 seconds to every 30 minutes, depending on the settings decided on by the court. If alcohol is detected in your perspiration, your probation officer will be notified, and you will be compelled to submit to blood alcohol testing immediately. If the blood alcohol content test shows that you have consumed alcohol, this is a violation of your terms of probation and will result in your arrest. Your blood alcohol concentration does not have to be above the legal limit to apply, even a single shot or drink will have you facing the same consequences. 

If you have agreed to wear a SCRAM unit in order to be released on bond or be granted probation, you can absolutely not drink at all. Even a single violation will have your bond or probation revoked, and if you are on probation you can be charged with another criminal offense for breaking your probation. 

Learn More: Possible Outcomes for a DUI Case

Drug and Alcohol Rehabilitation Services 

If you have been placed in any type of court-ordered drug or alcohol rehabilitation services, it is imperative that you do not consume drugs or alcohol during your treatment. Not only do you lose all of the money that you have had to pay for these services, but also you may face jail time for being unable to complete your assigned rehab. 

Can You Drink After a DUI?

Most persons who receive rehab instead of jail time do so voluntarily, and you must admit to the court that you have a drug or drinking habit, or addiction, if you plan on asking for rehab over jail time. One of the stipulations of receiving entrance into a rehabilitation program over receiving jail time is that you must remain clean and sober during your rehabilitation treatment and throughout the duration of your treatment plan, whether you are being treated in an in-patient or out-patient facility. 

Proceed With Strong Caution 

While most questions you may have are common questions, there are no common answers. This is due to the complexity of the law, and even minute details of your case can change the answers to even the simplest of questions. And while the public forum may tell you that your probation officer or rehabilitation facility will never find out about a couple of alcoholic beverages, is a maybe worth facing felony charges? 

If you've been charged with a DUI, it's time to call a Naperville DUI lawyer. With years of experience, insider knowledge of law enforcement, and the courts from years served as a prosecutor, Alexander Ktenas has a hidden trove of legal advice for his clients that other attorneys can not offer. Whatever your questions or the details of your case, your search for lawyers ends here. Call (630) 425-0250 today for a free consultation!