The Advantages of Hiring a Drunk Driving Attorney
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UPDATED: Feb 12, 2020
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The overall advantage of hiring a drunk driving attorney is that they understand the rules and the consequences of a drunk driving arrest. In fact, if the consequences to you are big and serious (i.e., losing your license, paying a large fine, jail time, permanent mark on your record), you are not going to be able to do it alone without the skilled help; get a reliable attorney in DUI or DWI law who can provide that help.
If an attorney regularly practices DUI or DWI law, they will know the applicable law, the defenses, the local prosecutors, and the options related to a drunk driving case in your jurisdiction in detail. This places the attorney in a better position to present your case in the most advantageous manner possible in order to reduce your penalty/sentencing or to have your DUI charge dismissed entirely. Over the last several years, more states have begun cracking down on drunk driving offenses by imposing stiffer penalties and harsher sentencing, especially on future drunk driving convictions. Even a misdemeanor drunk driving conviction can have more impact on your life and criminal history than some lower level felony offenses by way of mandatory jail sentences and lengthy driver’s license suspensions, so it is important that you take steps to minimize the impact of a DUI on your life.
Advantages of Hiring a Drunk Driving Attorney
The first advantage is that a good drunk driving attorney knows the important legal rules and standards (and local court customs and procedures) in depth for the prosecution of driving while intoxicated. Even though a family law attorney can draft pleadings, they may not be up on the latest requirements for blood draws, field sobriety tests, breath tests, or sobriety check points. If an attorney is not specialized in current DUI laws and technology, they will not be able to identify, consciously or unconsciously, many issues with your case that could result in a lesser sentence or dismissal of your case. Moreover, finding a reputable attorney with DUI experience might also mean a lesser hit to your pocketbook because the attorney is up to speed on the substantive law applicable to your case and what evidence to look for.
A good DUI attorney can also present your case to the state motor vehicle department/bureau on any license suspension hearings. They will know what defenses carry weight, and which do not, and can present your case more effectively and persuasively than you.
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Discussing Options for Handling DUI with a Drunk Driving Attorney
Most people think the only two options are to take a plea or go to trial. A good DUI attorney will usually be able to talk about all of the local options as well. For example, many counties have received funding for specialized DUI programs. If you agree to enter a DUI diversion program and successfully complete the drug or alcohol counseling, you can “earn” a reduced sentence or dismissal. If the attorney you are considering hiring is not familiar with local practices, does not have lots of experience in handling DUI matters or negotiating with the prosecutor, they may not be the right lawyer to advise you about all of the ways to handle your case. You should consider consulting with a different attorney. Look at what’s at stake: if the consequences are severe, you need good legal help and fast. Most DUI attorneys offer free consultations so it is in your best interest to contact a DUI Attorney.
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DUI Attorneys and Inside Information
A drunk driving attorney will know the players involved in a DUI prosecution, from the local officer to the prosecutor to the judge. They can tell you whether this officer is qualified to administer field sobriety tests and whether he has ever been subject to disciplinary action for lying in the past.
If the officer is a bad officer, they may be able to get your case dismissed or reduced. They will also have a working relationship with the prosecutors that handle the DUI cases. Depending on local practices and the facts of your case, some prosecutors allow pleas to alternate charges such as “obstruction of roadway” in exchange for a higher fine and stiffer counseling, but you get to keep your driver’s license. A DUI attorney will know to ask for alternate plea options to protect your criminal history and driver’s license. The DUI attorney knows which arguments are likely to appeal and carry more weight with the prosecutor than someone representing him or herself.
DUI Attorney’s Importance in DUI Cases
When choosing a DUI attorney to represent you, consider this: you wouldn’t want your dentist to give you open-heart surgery. The same theory applies when selecting a drunk driving attorney. A good DUI lawyer understands the overlap of scientific principles used by law enforcement as well as trends in DUI law. Don’t compromise your DUI case (and future life) with someone who is less than qualified to understand your DUI defense. Find out the advantages a DUI attorney can offer you by completing the free case evaluation form below.