Some basic information for first time Delaware County DUI offenders who may not know about ARD – by Michael A. Burns, Esq. (Burns Law LLC) for www.delcoduiblog.com

ARD is an acronym that stands for Accelerated Rehabilitative Disposition.  Specifically, ARD is a program that stresses counseling and treatment rather than imprisonment.

The “Accelerated” portion of the program generally means that the process for ARD will move through the courts more quickly than a normal trial process.  The “Rehabilitative” nature of the program takes into consideration that the alleged offense, or what you were charged with, is the first time you have faced an incident in the court system as an adult.  Thus, it allows for managing the behavior of the individual and educating them with important lessons and information to prevent the same behavior from reoccurring.  So ultimately and quite simply, the program seeks to treat and rehabilitate rather than punish.  The “Disposition” nature of the program means that after the individual completes all of the program requirements, the case will be disposed and all charges for the alleged case will be dismissed. 

ARD is generally available in many criminal cases, mainly with charges that are graded as summaries and misdemeanors, and not felonies.  However, ARD is a popular alternative in many DUI cases. It is a sensible alternative to prosecution for first time DUI offenders. Though the program requires additional costs and time, the major benefit to the ARD program is the charges are ultimately dismissed and eligible for expungement.

If you were arrested for a DUI in Delaware County, and wish to speak with a local Delaware County DUI lawyer, contact Burns Law LLC by email at legal@burnslaw.org or by phone at 610.586.1828 for a free consultation.  A DUI lawyer can review your case to see if you are eligible for ARD and help guide you through the process of your case.

–  Michael A. Burns, Esq. is a partner at Burns Law LLC and a regular author and contributor to delcoduiblog.com