A work furlough is a program where you can keep working your job instead of doing hard jail time. It is sometimes used as a sentence for DUI.
There are many reasons why no one wants to go to jail. But one of the biggest is the prospect of missing work. Employers are under no obligation to keep you on as an employee if you have to miss work for a jail sentence, and some will fire employees even if they miss only one or two days. Even if you keep your job, the lost income can be devastating. This is why California offers a work furlough option in some DUI cases.
Work furlough is an alternative to jail. Under a furlough, you must still return to a government-run facility every night. But during the day, you can leave the premises to go to your job. This means you don’t have to miss a single day or work.
There are rules for work furlough. You must inform the work furlough of your work schedule and they will establish a curfew by which you must return to the facility (second shift and night shift options are usually available). You cannot go anywhere else besides work. And you must already have a verifiable job—you will not be assigned duties as you would in a work release.
Still, work furlough is generally far superior to jail time. Even the facility you must stay in is more like a secure dormitory and less like a jail. It is a comfortable alternative that allows you to keep your job. Ask your lawyer if you might qualify for a work furlough program.
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