If you've been arrested for DUI (Driving Under the Influence), DWI (Driving While Intoxicated), or any other drunk driving-related offense, you should seek the legal advice of a DUI lawyer. A good DUI lawyer can help minimize or avoid severe penalties and consequences often associated with DUI. Knowing when to contact or hire a DUI attorney can make the difference between going to jail, losing your license, and getting a non-guilty or reduced plea verdict.
Below is important information you should know concerning why, when, and how to hire a DUI lawyer.
Why You Need a DUI Lawyer
A DUI arrest is a serious matter. If you've been arrested for driving under the influence, there's a good chance you'll face jail time, have your license suspended, and/or pay hefty fines - not to mention the potential hardships you may encounter at work, with your future career prospects, and personal relationships. In addition, if someone died as a result of your drunk driving, you will potentially have to deal with severe psychological issues as well. While some legal matters may be handled alone, a DUI arrest warrants the legal advice of a qualified DUI attorney or someone who knows how to handle the intricacies of your DUI case. And not just any criminal defense attorney will do. Because DUI laws are highly centralized and specific, DUI cases are best handled by experienced DUI attorneys or someone with specialized knowledge in this area, including knowledge of traffic laws, motor vehicle laws, and ignition interlock devices, for example.
Moreover, a good DUI attorney may challenge certain aspects of your DUI charge based on his or her specialized knowledge of breathalyzers, blood test, and chemical testing procedures. Therefore, you need a good DUI lawyer who can help guide you through the often confusing word of DUI.
What to Look for in a DUI Lawyer
Qualified DUI lawyers handle a variety of cases involving DUI arrests, DWI, and other drunk driving-related offenses. When looking for a DUI lawyer, you should concentrate on the lawyer's expertise, skill level, commitment, and location or area served. For example, an experienced DUI attorney may help:
- reduce or eliminate jail time;
- eliminate a revoked license;
- reduce your DUI charge to a lesser offense, and/or
- avoid trial with a plea bargain.
Also, it's important that the attorney you hire has the necessary skill level and is the one who actually conducts most of the work on your case.
Lastly, because DUI laws vary so widely by state and county, it's important that the attorney has experience in the city or county where the arrest took place.
How to Find a DUI Lawyer
There are numerous ways to find a DUI lawyer. Referrals from friends and family or online research may be a good start. However, not all websites are the same -- and unless you live in the same county as your friend or relative or have unlimited hours to spend online, you may wish to find a local DUI lawyer using one of several quality-assured lawyer directories, such as FindLaw, devoted to connecting you to an experienced lawyer in your area.
As the #1 trafficked legal website on the web, FindLaw offers a comprehensive lawyer directory of experienced DUI attorneys in your area for free.
Questions to Ask a DUI Lawyer
Before selecting a DUI lawyer, you should feel comfortable enough to speak with him or her concerning all aspects of your DUI or drunk-driving related charge. Below are some of the questions you should ask before hiring a DUI attorney.
- How much of your criminal defense practice is devoted to DUI/DWI cases?
- How much of my DUI case will you actually handle?
- How many DUI/DWI cases have you defended?
- Are you aware of the state's breathalyzer requirements and/or loopholes?
- What are your attorney's fees, and how are they calculated?
DUI Lawyer Fees
The cost of fighting a DUI charge will vary and depends on a number of factors. First, not all DUI attorneys are the same, and a good DUI lawyer will probably cost more than an average DUI lawyer. Second, DUI fees will likely vary according to geography, or where you live, so a New York DUI lawyer may cost more than a DUI lawyer in Kansas. Third, DUI charges are case-specific and the fees will vary based on the amount of work needed to represent your case (for example, a first-offender vs. habitual offender). In all cases, it is wise to consult with a variety of DUI attorneys in your area to find one you feel comfortable with in representing you and get a sense of the cost involved in fighting your case.
Hire a DUI Lawyer to Help with Your Case
DUI defense is highly technical and depends heavily on the facts of the individual situation. A qualified local DUI attorney can provide invaluable assistance by reviewing your case and advising you on your options moving forward. Get in touch with an attorney near you today to learn more.