Probation For Misdemeanor DUIs In Arizona

by Aaron M. Black • September 29, 2023

After an Arizona misdemeanor DUI case ends in a conviction, there is one more hurdle – probation. The court may order a period of time during which a defendant’s freedom is restricted to some degree. This can be up to 5 years for a misdemeanor DUI.

The probationary period, also termed summary probation, is a crucial step as an alternative to incarceration and for changing the behavior of those who have driven while impaired by alcohol or drugs, even prescription drugs.

Judge Passing Sentence in DUI Case

A judge makes the determination if someone is going to be placed on probation and for how long.

The judge determines the conditions of probation, and judges have wide discretion in forming the probation restrictions. The standard conditions are living a crime-free lifestyle, paying all the fines, fees, and court costs, successfully completing alcohol or drug treatment counseling, and participating in community service such as picking up trash in parks and on the roadside.

Rules of probation include driving without consuming any amount of alcohol or drugs, even if the amount of alcohol is less than Arizona’s legal limit of .08 percent of blood-alcohol concentration (BAC).

Another restriction is that a judge often will forbid the defendant from consuming alcohol while on probation.

Should a person on misdemeanor DUI probation violate any one of the imposed conditions, no matter how minor the violation, it leads to a court hearing at which the prosecution presents evidence of the alleged probation violation. If probation is revoked, the defendant can receive up to 6 months in jail.

Violating Parole Can Lead To 6 Months In Jail

Probation is only available to those who committed offenses that were not dangerous, defined as using a deadly weapon or a dangerous instrument.


Length of DUI-related probation

DUI offenses are Class 1 misdemeanors, the most serious in the misdemeanor range. The length of the time spent under probation restrictions is five years for a DUI.

It may be possible to reduce the time on probation by filing a Petition of Early Termination with the court. The court may do that on its own if all the probation conditions have been met by the offender, such as paying all court costs.

Probation violations

Should a person on probation commit a crime, probation is revoked. The offender could be sentenced to jail for as long as six months.

Common violations of DUI probation are driving while impaired or slightly impaired, refusing to breathe into a breathalyzer, declining to submit to blood or urine testing, not signing up for court-ordered classes, or missing an appearance in court.

Probation types and restrictions

Arizona’s probation law allows three types of probation – unsupervised, supervised, and intensive.

Unsupervised probation is the most gentle and is often used for misdemeanor DUI convictions if sentenced to a term of probation. No probation officer is involved, and the defendant is not required to check in with anyone. However, the defendant must adhere to the conditions of probation that the court imposed.

Should a person on unsupervised probation commit a crime, the person will be charged with a probation violation, and additional punishment is added.

Supervised probation involves a probation officer setting a schedule for the defendant to meet with the officer and obey the terms of probation. The terms include paying fines based on the offense, alcohol and drug counseling, or forbidding the use of alcohol or drugs. The person must obey the law and cannot possess firearms, ammunition, or deadly weapons. Typically, supervised probation is only for felony offenses.

The most strict, intensive probation is not used in misdemeanor DUI cases.

Juvenile DUI offenders

Offenders younger than 18 may be placed on “juvenile intensive probation,” which is rigorous and supervised. The intent of this effort is to divert these underage defendants by placing them in an intensely structured environment that makes them accountable. Although strict, the program does not remove offenders from their homes.

Underaged Juvenile DUI Offenders

The juveniles must have multiple contacts with a probation officer every week to instill positive behavioral changes and limit the possibility of future criminal conduct.

Aaron M. Black Law Can Help With Your DUI

Aaron M. Black Law can prepare your defense for a probation hearing and challenge the proposed restrictions on your rights and freedom.

From my decades-long career as a Phoenix DUI defense attorney, I know that good people can find themselves in legal trouble. That is why I am dedicated to ensuring my clients have the best defense possible.

You will receive personalized legal services when choosing Aaron M. Black Law to represent you in the probation process. You will always be talking directly to me, never an assistant, at every step of your road to achieving a successful probation.

Begin your probationary defense immediately by calling 480-729-1683 at any time on any day, and I will respond promptly unless I am in court or at trial. Or use the online contact form on my website.

I defend all levels of DUI charges and represent probationers in DUI probation proceedings throughout Arizona, including in the cities of Phoenix and Scottsdale, as well as Maricopa, Pinal, Yavapai, and Coconino County Superior Courts and related probation hearings.

About the Author

Aaron Black Phoenix DUI LawyerAaron Black is the founder and sole attorney of the Law Office of Aaron Black. Located in Phoenix, Arizona, his DUI and criminal defense law firm provides legal services to people who have received felony or misdemeanor charges from the state.

Aaron has developed a strong interest in defending people who have been arrested and received criminal charges for driving under the influence. With his professionalism and knowledge of Arizona DUI and criminal law, he has acted as a check and balance on the police, prosecution and courts and has protected a great number of his clients from excessive and unfair sentencing.

Along with DUI defense, Aaron handles a range of other criminal defense matters, including aggravated assault, burglary, domestic violence, drug possession, drug trafficking, fraud defense, insurance fraud, sex crimes, and white-collar crime cases.

After graduating college in 2003 from the University of Arizona, Aaron decided to pursue a law degree. He followed a family long tradition and went to the University of South Dakota School of Law where he pursued his goal of becoming a criminal defense lawyer.

After passing the Arizona and South Dakota bar exams, Aaron joined the Maricopa County Office of the Public Defender where he defended hundreds of people charged with serious criminal offenses. His work as a public defender helped him sharpen his litigation skills and gave him a unique insight into the Arizona criminal justice system.

Over the course of his 15-year legal career, Aaron has spent a considerable amount of time in both Arizona justice, municipal, state and federal courts. He has argued over 50 jury trials, tried over 100 bench trials and has become one of the highest-rated criminal and DUI defense attorneys in Phoenix and the surrounding areas. He has received a 10/10 rating from the legal directory Avvo because of his legal background and successful case record. Since 2014, he has received the Super Lawyer rating for his work as a Phoenix DUI Attorney and criminal defense attorney.

You can review Aaron’s Attorney Bio page for more information about his background, education and experience as a Phoenix DUI and criminal defense attorney.
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