Do I need a DUI Attorney?
Hiring an attorney who is experienced in DUI law will certainly have its benefits. They understand the court system, they have knowledge about plea bargaining, and they can navigate the complex administrative procedures. This is even more important should you be a repeat offender.
If, on the other hand, this is your first DUI, and the circumstances were not aggravated, such as in the case of reckless driving, you did not have a high blood alcohol content – BAC of more than .12, or there were no minors in the vehicle, you may not need the services of a DUI attorney.
Things to Consider about Finding a DUI Attorney
Get a DUI attorney who specializes within the laws of your state. Attorneys that specialize in DUI cases will understand the court system and also know how best to represent your particular case. If you reside in the San Francisco area, you’d be well served by utilizing the services of the best DUI attorney in San Francisco.
If there’s a level of certainty that you will be convicted, it is likely wise to plead guilty. As an example, if your BAC was higher than .11 and you were driving erratically.
Nevertheless, irrespective you’re convinced that pleading guilty is appropriate, a DUI attorney can provide you with advice that may well alter severity of your sentence. If there is some question over the accuracy of the BAC reading and it was found to be between .08 and .11, for example, a DUI attorney might be in a strong position to plea bargain your case.
In most first offense DUIs where there was no injury caused, a routine sentence is normally handed down by the judge, and it seldom varies between individual cases.
As an addition to plea bargaining, whereby the charges are reduced, such as in the case of a DUI to reckless driving, there is the possibility, at least in most states, of sentence bargaining. This is particularly useful where pleading guilty could mean a lengthy period of incarceration.
As an example, you would only be willing to pleading guilty to a second DUI offense providing you are aware what the sentence will be. And the same can be said for aggravated DUI cases, whereby your BAC is found to be over .15, or either an injury or death resulted.
Here, it’s probably advisable not to plead guilty unless you already know your sentence, and in which case, you would be well served by having an attorney.
Second Offenders Should Have an Attorney
You will likely need a DUI attorney if it’s not your first DUI.
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