Why should I see an attorney about a DUI?
A DUI is charged a misdemeanor or felony criminal offense – it is not just a traffic citation. If you are convicted of a DUI, there are mandatory penalties which include jail, fines and DUI classes. Your drivers license is automatically suspended unless you take the right, timely action. Your auto insurance rates will skyrocket. If you hold a professional license, a conviction must usually be reported to your governing agency. In short, you have a lot to lose. So it makes good sense to defend yourself against DUI charges. An experienced criminal attorney will review the facts of your case with you in detail to determine if there are any legal defenses to the charges and, if not, to determine the best approach to the criminal case and the DMV suspension action. Don’t simply plead guilty without first determining what an experienced DUI attorney can do for you.
What should I look for in a defense attorney?
Most attorneys do not practice criminal or DUI law – you need an attorney who specializes in DUIs to defend your rights in a DUI case. You should be confident that the attorney you select can properly handle a DUI case. When you have questions, make sure they’re answered to your satisfaction. Ultimately, you should feel comfortable with the attorney you select. Selecting a lawyer based on costs alone or looking for the cheapest attorney is a mistake and often ends up costing you more in the long run.
Can I represent myself?
Representing yourself is flying blind. You will never know if you could have beaten the charges. There is an old saying the that the person who represents himself has a fool for a client. DUIs are serious charges with stiff penalties and high long term costs. Take it seriously.
Do I have to appear in court?
In most cases where a person who is charged with a misdemeanor DUI has an attorney representing them, the person never has to show up in court.
Can you guarantee results?
Beware of any attorney who guarantees results. In the law, as in most other areas of life, absolute certainty is not possible. However, the best outcome in a DUI case is always the result of a good professional relationship with a competent attorney.
What is the DMV suspension?
In most cases, the DMV will suspend or revoke your California drivers license if you don’t challenge the action by, first, requesting a hearing within 10 days of your receipt of the Administrative Per Se Suspension/Revocation Order and Temporary License. Next, a hearing is held to determine if the action will be sustained and the license suspended. The issues relates to DMV hearings are particularly complex and few attorneys have the necessary experience to challenge the suspension action.