Perhaps the most obvious consequence of an OWI in Iowa is losing your driving privileges. Depending on the severity of your charges, your license suspension could last anywhere from a few months to over a year.
One of the most important things you can do is to establish boundaries to prevent another OWI. Changing your habits will enable you to avoid worse consequences that often result from reoffending.
Understanding the process
The process to have your license reinstated requires completion in a certain order. According to the Iowa Department of Education, depending on your situation, an evaluator may recommend you participate in a qualified treatment program for substance abuse. You will also need to complete a drinking driver education program. There are several approved programs throughout the state, but verify the legitimacy of any course before spending the time to go through it.
If you need to pay any fines, complete restitution or observe any civil penalties, you cannot have your license reinstated until you complete each component. Once you have accomplished everything required by either the Iowa Department of Transportation or the court, you can have your driving privileges back.
Going through any court-ordered substance abuse program will not make much of a difference unless you make a personal commitment to change. You may consider working with a therapist to help you develop healthier habits, as well as to learn effective coping mechanisms. If you know you plan to attend an event with alcohol, arrange ahead of time to have someone drive you home. Planning ahead can reduce the temptation to try driving home after you have had a drink to prevent yet another OWI from holding you back.