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SOBER Court Offers Alternative for DWI Offenders


The Harris County Criminal Justice System offers certain second-time DWI offenders the opportunity to avoid incarceration through participation in the SOBER program, a judicially-monitored intervention and treatment program. Standing for “Saving Ourselves By Education & Recovery,” the SOBER program is a nine- to sixteen-month long program designed to break the cycle of addiction and reduce repeat DWI offenses through education, intense supervision, substance abuse treatment, and incentives designed to encourage lasting sobriety.

Who is Eligible for the SOBER Program?

Judges will only refer certain defendants to the SOBER program. This program is only offered to legal Harris County residents who are charged with a second DWI offense, have violated supervision conditions for a misdemeanor DWI, or have been identified as a high-risk for a second offense through the assessment process.

A person may not participate in the SOBER program if they have a history of committing any of the following types of offenses:

  • Violent crimes
  • Firearms charges
  • Sex offenses

In addition, those who exhibit mental health symptoms that may interfere with their ability to successfully complete the program may also be excluded. Participants must pay a monthly $60 fee and strictly adhere to all terms of the program in order to continue with the program. Participants who follow all court-ordered guidelines are given a community service reduction, assistance with obtaining an Occupational Driver’s License (ODL), financial assistance with installing an ignition interlock device (IID), and other rewards for good behavior. After a person has completed all four phases of the program, they are eligible for graduation, marking the end of their sentence. Those who violate the program’s terms can have their initial jail sentence imposed.

Contact Stornello Law Firm, P.C.

If you have been accused of a second DWI offense in Harris County, a DWI lawyer from Stornello Law Firm, P.C. can advocate on your behalf and help you pursue enrollment in the SOBER program. Having earned a 10.0 Superb Avvo Rating and a prestigious Super Lawyers® designation for our unparalleled advocacy, we can provide the results-driven representation you need to maximize your chances of securing a desirable outcome for your situation.

To get started, contact our office online or call (281) 369-4506 to discuss your case in further detail.