The Simple Life was offered the option because of her pregnancy

Credit: Colin Drummond/Splash News Online

Mom-to-be Nicole Richie has been granted a leave of absence from her court-mandated anti-drinking program, her rep confirms to PEOPLE.

The program suggested the Simple Life star take a leave because they were worried for her safety, according to her rep.

“They offer that option to anyone with a medical condition of any kind,” the rep says. “She is not receiving special treatment.”

Richie, 26, who is eight months pregnant, must complete the 18-month program as part of her plea deal in her second DUI conviction. She was sentenced in July to four days in jail, fined $2,048, and required to sign up for the program. (In August, Richie served just 82 minutes at the Lynwood Jail, where pal Paris Hilton did her time.)

The alcohol-education course consists of 52 hours of group counseling, bi-weekly face-to-face interviews and 12 hours of alcohol education. Participants are also encouraged to attend 12-step meetings.