Should I waste money on a lawyer with AZ mandatory punishments or just get a public defender?

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Should I waste money on a lawyer with AZ mandatory punishments or just get a public defender?

Class A CDL, no priors, pending blood test results probably extreme or super extreme, court date set.

Asked on May 16, 2009 under Criminal Law, Arizona


M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 14 years ago | Contributor

First Extreme DUI (BAC above .15%)

JAIL: 30 consecutive days in jail. The Court may suspend 20 of the 30 days if you agree to get an alcohol and/or drug evaluation, and submit to treatment.

FINE & COSTS: $250.00 fine, plus a surcharge, plus an additional $250.00 assessment to the Arizona DUI abatement fund, plus an additional $1000.00 assessment.

LICENSE:The MVD will suspend your driver's license for 90 days.

COUNSELING: Allowed if recommended in your evaluation and you want the Judge to suspend all but ten days in jail.

PROBATION: You may be placed on probation for up to five years.

IGNITION INTERLOCK DEVICE: You will be required to have an Ignition Interlock Device installed on your vehicle.

I don't think that with the potential to face all of the above that hiring a private attorney is a  "waste" of your money.  If convicted of this you will not only have a driving record but a criminal record as well.  Every time that that you apply for a job this could turn up on a background check.  And if you are arrested for this again things will be even that much worse.  Public defender's are swamped, plus you may get someone not all that experienced with DUI's.  If I were you I would hire a firm specializing in DUI.  They will have contacts in the prosecutor's office and can possibly get the charges thrown out on a technicality or at least reduced.  If you ask me it is money well spent.

Remember, you get what you pay for.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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