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Chapter 321J.17 of the Code of Iowa explains requirements for persons operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated within the state of Iowa. 

Iowa law stipulates that individuals, found to have been operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated - either by failing a sobriety test or refusing to test, must complete a mandated "drinking and driving course that encourages the offender to assess the offender's own drinking and driving behavior in order to select practical alternatives."

OWI in Iowa Brochure

Frequently Asked Questions

Information for Iowans

If you received an OWI in the state of Iowa, you will need to complete the following before your driver's license can be reinstated. Note that in some cases additional penalties/requirements may be imposed by the court system and/or by the Iowa Department of Transportation.

  • Complete a substance abuse evaluation and follow any treatment recommendations as stipulated by the evaluator. Need help finding a licensed substance abuse evaluator in Iowa?  Assistance may be found by using our online resource or by calling 515-281-5251
  • Successfully complete a state approved drinking driver education program. There are a number of providers that have been approved to provide this program in the state of Iowa. Cost for the 12-hour class is $115.  Additional fees may be incurred for the jail diversion program.  Please note that attending a Victim Impact Panel does not satisfy the drinking driver education requirement.

    For a searchable listing, click on the Facility Locator link below. General questions regarding the drinking driver program may be directed to 515-281-5251 or emailed to:
  • Pay any civil penalties, reinstatement fees, and/or pass any examinations as required by the court system and the Iowa Department of Transportation. For further information regarding your driving record, contact the Iowa Department of Transportation at 800-532-1121.

Use the link above to locate state approved alcohol education providers and licensed substance abuse treatment/evaluators in Iowa.


Information for Non-Iowans

The State of Iowa requires that you complete a substance abuse evaluation and a state approved drinking driver education course.  If you are not a resident of Iowa, but were charged with operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated in the state of Iowa, you may complete your drinking driver education course and the evaluation outside of Iowa.  For help in locating an educational course or a substance abuse evaluator, contact our office at 515-281-5251 during normal business hours.  Attending a Victim Impact Panel does not satisfy the drinking driver education requirement. Please be aware that Iowa WILL NOT accept on-line drinking driver education courses. 

Upon completion of the drinking driver education course, you will need to complete and return the Out-Of-State OWI Education Completion Form along with a certificate of completion from the educational course.  

You will also need to complete and provide a copy of a substance abuse evaluation. The evaluation must clearly state the date of the evaluation, the evaluator's recommendation, the name of the evaluator, and the agency's name and location/telephone number.  If the substance abuse evaluation recommended treatment, documentation to show that the treatment was successfully completed must also be submitted. 

There is a $25 administrative fee for submitting education from outside of Iowa. You may pay with a cashier's check, money order or with a credit or debit card.  Credit/debit card payments can be made online at

You may fax your documentation to 515-242-5988, scan and email to: or send through postal mail to:

Iowa Department of Education
Drinking Driver Education
400 East 14th Street
Des Moines, IA 50319-0146

If you are having trouble opening forms on this site, you may need to update your version of Adobe Reader.  Use this link to obtain a current version of Adobe Reader.


Out-Of-State OWI Education Completion Form - use when submitting education from a state other than Iowa

Out of State Substance Abuse Evaluation Treatment Completion - use to submit substance abuse evaluation/treatment from a state other than Iowa

Residency Statement - an IDOT form to provide proof of residency in an state other than Iowa




Iowa's OWI Laws

Iowa's BWI (Boating While Intoxicated) Laws

Iowa Department of Transportation - Driver Services

Iowa Department of Transportation Driver's License Stations

National Driver Register

Approved Ignition Interlock Device Systems

Locate a Drinking Driver Education & Substance Abuse Evaluation/Treatment in Iowa

Locate a Substance Abuse Treatment Facility Nationwide

Locate a Substance Abuse Professional - for those required to obtain a evaluation from a SAP



PRIME For Life - OWI Education Report - 2011

PRIME For Life - OWI Education Report - 2010

Analysis of OWI Arrests and Convictions in Iowa

For Providers

Requirements for offering 12-hour Drinking Driver Course

  • you must be approved by the Department of Education to provide the course  
  • the course may not be offered in more than four hour blocks without a minimum of a 30 minute break
  • instructional time may not be more than 8 hours per day
  • upon successful completion and payment, the agency will provide student with a completion certificate and if applicable electronically submit class completion to the Iowa Department of Transportation
  • all instructors must be certified to teach the course, and attend a recertification course every 24 months
  • all students attending the course must receive their own workbook 
  • a fee of $115 shall be charged to all participants unless they are deemed indigent, and then the fee may be waived
  • agencies must submit a quarterly report and the administrative fees collected to the Department of Education within 30 days following the end of each quarter

Reporting Documents for Providers

OWI Quarterly Summary of Students Attending Classes - Excel
Quarterly Fees Report - PDF
Quarterly Fees Report - Word


Education For Instructors

 PRI Training Opportunities


Provider Newsletters

December 2013

January 2013

December 2011

September 2011

Advisory Committee

January 28, 2015 Advisory Meeting Minutes

July 23, 2014 Advisory Meeting Minutes

September 11, 2013 Advisory Meeting Minutes

May 30, 2013 Advisory Meeting Minutes

January 2013 Advisory Meeting Minutes

September 2012 Meeting Minutes

May 2012 Meeting Minutes

February 2012 Meeting Minutes

September 2011 Meeting Minutes

May 2011 Meeting Minutes


Contact Us

By Phone: 515.281.5251

By Fax: 515.242.5988 (Please indicate OWI in Subject Line)

By E-mail:

By Mail:

Iowa Department of Education
Drinking Driver Education
400 East 14th Street
Des Moines, IA 50319

Map of Locations

Printed from the Iowa Department of Education website on October 09, 2015 at 8:12pm.