Can I Plead to a "Wet Reckless" in Florida?

Plea bargaining a reduced charge in Florida drunk driving cases.

In some states, it’s possible for a motorist who’s accused of driving under the influence (DUI) to “plea bargain” for a lesser charge. When such a plea bargain is for a reckless driving charge, it’s sometimes called a “wet reckless.”

Plea Bargaining in Florida DUI Cases

Unlike some other states, Florida doesn’t prohibit plea bargaining in DUI cases. There are, however, restrictions. Generally, plea bargaining for a lesser charge is prohibited in cases where:

  • the driver's blood alcohol concentration (BAC) was .15% or more, or
  • the offense involved property damage, injuries, or a fatality.

(Fla. Stat. § 316.656 (2017).)

Benefits of a Wet Reckless Plea

The benefits of pleading to a wet reckless are simple: The penalties for a reckless driving violation are less severe than those for driving under the influence.

However, motorists convicted of a reckless driving offense that involved drugs or alcohol—in addition to the normal reckless driving penalties—must complete a DUI substance abuse education course and evaluation. Depending on the results of the evaluation, the person might also have to complete substance abuse treatment. (Fla. Stat. § 316.192(5) (2017).)

Talk to an Attorney

If you’ve been arrest for driving under the influence, talk to an experienced local DUI attorney. The facts of every case are different. A qualified DUI lawyer can talk to you about what the possibilities are for your case.

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