Driving under the influence (DUI) and driving while intoxicated (DWI) are serious crimes, punishable by fines, jail time, license suspension or revocation, and a myriad of other life-altering consequences.
Whether you’re rightly or wrongly charged with drunk driving, you need adequate representation in court – your cousin the bankruptcy lawyer won’t fit the bill.
A DUI defense attorney will be familiar with the drunk driving laws in your state, as well as with how to appeal the automatic license suspension and other penalties levied in your state.
5 Tips for Hiring a DUI Criminal Attorney
Here are five points to remember when hiring a DUI attorney:
- Referrals. Family members and good friends who have a DUI or DWI arrest, or who have friends in the legal system, can tell you about qualified DUI attorneys they know.
- Experience. You need a DUI attorney with actual court room experience. Like any other legal charge, drunk driving is highly technical. Don’t be afraid to ask potential DUI attorneys how many cases drunk driving cases they’ve successfully litigated.
- Shop locally. Look for DUI or DWI lawyers in your town or city. Again, a good friend from out of town might be a fine lawyer…but does he know and understand the local laws? Does he have practice in applying those laws in court? If not, you’re better off saying, “Thanks, but no thanks.”
- Beware big promises. Be on your guard against a criminal lawyer who promises the moon. The simple fact is, you cannot always get off without a conviction. A good DUI attorney will be honest about your chances.
- Communication. A DUI defense attorney needs to answer your questions. A lawyer who consistently rephrases your questions in order to give you easy answers is not a lawyer with your best interest at heart. If you feel you’ve been left in the dark, do not hesitate to fire your lawyer and find another.
Have you or someone you know ever been charged with DUI or DWI? What advice can you offer for hiring good DUI and DWI attorneys?