DDRS COURSE: You must meet the criteria to join one of the courses. The court can offer you an opportunity to take a rehabilitation course to reduce the driving ban if:
- They find you guilty of committing a drink drive offence.
- The length of your driving ban is for at least 12 months.
Even so, the courses are not free. In most cases, the drink driving rehabilitation course cost is £250.
Reducing the Length of a Driving Ban
You must complete the drink-drive rehabilitation course within a fixed time frame. As a rule, course completion would usually reduce the length of a driving ban by 25% (one quarter).
When to Decide about a DDRS Course
You must make a decision about taking a course while you are in the court. Either way, once you have decided, you cannot change your mind at a later date.
Note: The courses for drink drive offenders differ in Northern Ireland. They are voluntary and the drink driving course cost is £155 (payable by installments).
Finding a Drink Drive Rehabilitation Course
Before going to court, it is best to find a drink-drive rehabilitation course that you would take. Doing so means you already have the information in case you get found guilty and then get offered a DDRS course.
If this happens, the court will send a referral order (details of your case) to the drink-drive course provider. The court will also send you the details of:
- The dates when your chosen course is available with that particular provider.
- A deadline of when you must complete your drink drive rehabilitation course.
Note: It is your responsibility to ensure that you complete the entire course by the stated deadline.
Changing to another Course
There is no penalty to change to a different course provider before you make the booking. You can do so at any point and there is no cost to change course providers.
You should inform the original course provider of your cancellation. That means they can send the referral order to the new course provider.
How the DDRS Course Works
The overriding aim of the drink-drive rehabilitation scheme course syllabus is to stop offenders from drink-driving again. It consists of two separate units:
- Understand the impact of alcohol use in relation to driving.
- Change alcohol use in relation to driving.
All the drink driving course units are face-to-face programs and:
- Conducted over 16 hours (most often run on 3 days spread over 3 weeks).
- Conducted in the presence of other drink-drive offenders and participants.
After Attending a Drink Driving Rehabilitation Course
The course provider will give you a ‘certificate of course completion’ once you complete all the modules. They also send a copy of the certificate to the court that gave you the sentence.
Note: The same court will inform the DVLA so they can reduce your driving ban. But, the ban from driving does not get reduced if you fail to complete the course or fail to pay for it.
High Risk Offenders
DDRS Course Complaints
You should complain to the course provider if you are unhappy with the program. You can also contact the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency if that fails to solve the problem.
Drink-drive Rehabilitation Course Complaints
Email: [email protected]