Alcohol Education Program For Minors Law

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ALCOHOL EDUCATION PROGRAM FOR MINORS
Alcoholic Beverage Code
Chapter 106, Section 106.115
Administered by the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation
(Effective September 1, 2017)

Sec. 106.115. Attendance at Alcohol Awareness Course; License Suspension

  • (a) On the placement of a minor on deferred disposition for an offense under Section 49.02, Penal Code, or under Section 106.02, 106.025, 106.04, 106.041, 106.05, or 106.07, the court shall require the defendant to attend an alcohol awareness program approved by the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation under this section, a drug education program approved by the Department of State Health Services in accordance with Section 521.374, Transportation Code, or a drug and alcohol driving awareness program approved by the Texas Education Agency. On conviction of a minor of an offense under one or more of those sections, the court, in addition to assessing a fine as provided by those sections, shall require a defendant who has not been previously convicted of an offense under one of those sections to attend an alcohol awareness program, a drug education program, or a drug and alcohol driving awareness program described by this subsection. If the defendant has been previously convicted once or more of an offense under one or more of those sections, the court may require the defendant to attend an alcohol awareness program, a drug education program, or a drug and alcohol driving awareness program described by this subsection. If the defendant is younger than 18 years of age, the court may require the parent or guardian of the defendant to attend the program with the defendant. The Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation or Texas Commission of Licensing and Regulation, as appropriate:
    • (1) is responsible for the administration of the certification of approved alcohol awareness programs;
    • (2) may charge a nonrefundable application fee for:
      • (A) initial certification of the approval; or
      • (B) renewal of the certification;
    • (3) shall adopt rules regarding alcohol awareness programs approved under this section; and
    • (4) shall monitor, coordinate, and provide training to a person who provides an alcohol awareness program.
  • (b) When requested, an alcohol awareness program may be taught in languages other than English.
  • (b-1) If the defendant resides in a county with a population of 75,000 or less and access to an alcohol awareness program is not readily available in the county, the court may allow the defendant to take an online alcohol awareness program if the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation approves online courses or require the defendant to perform not less than eight hours of community service related to alcohol abuse prevention or treatment and approved by the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation under Subsection (b-3) instead of attending the alcohol awareness program. Community service ordered under this subsection is in addition to community service ordered under Section 106.071(d).
  • (b-2) For purposes of Subsection (b-1), if the defendant is enrolled in an institution of higher education located in a county in which access to an alcohol awareness program is readily available, the court may consider the defendant to be a resident of that county. If the defendant is not enrolled in such an institution of higher education or if the court does not consider the defendant to be a resident of the county in which the institution is located, the defendant's residence is the residence listed on the defendant's driver's license or personal identification certificate issued by the Department of Public Safety. If the defendant does not have a driver's license or personal identification certificate issued by the Department of Public Safety, the defendant's residence is the residence on the defendant's voter registration certificate. If the defendant is not registered to vote, the defendant's residence is the residence on file with the public school district on which the defendant's enrollment is based. If the defendant is not enrolled in public school, the defendant's residence is determined as provided by commission rule.
  • (b-3) The Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation shall create a list of community services related to alcohol abuse prevention or treatment in each county in the state to which a judge may sentence a defendant under Subsection (b-1).
  • (c) The court shall require the defendant to present to the court, within 90 days of the date of final conviction, evidence in the form prescribed by the court that the defendant, as ordered by the court, has satisfactorily completed an alcohol awareness program or performed the required hours of community service. For good cause the court may extend this period by not more than 90 days. If the defendant presents the required evidence within the prescribed period, the court may reduce the assessed fine to an amount equal to no less than one-half of the amount of the initial fine.
  • (d) If the defendant does not present the required evidence within the prescribed period, the court:
    • (1) shall order the Department of Public Safety to:
      • (A) suspend the defendant's driver's license or permit for a period not to exceed six months or, if the defendant does not have a license or permit, to deny the issuance of a license or permit to the defendant for that period; or
      • (B) if the defendant has been previously convicted of an offense under one or more of the sections listed in Subsection (a), suspend the defendant's driver's license or permit for a period not to exceed one year or, if the defendant does not have a license or permit, to deny the issuance of a license or permit to the defendant for that period; and
    • (2) may order the defendant or the parent, managing conservator, or guardian of the defendant to do any act or refrain from doing any act if the court determines that doing the act or refraining from doing the act will increase the likelihood that the defendant will present evidence to the court that the defendant has satisfactorily completed an alcohol awareness program or performed the required hours of community service.
  • (e) The Department of Public Safety shall send notice of the suspension or prohibition order issued under Subsection (d) by first class mail to the defendant. The notice must include the date of the suspension or prohibition order, the reason for the suspension or prohibition, and the period covered by the suspension or prohibition.