If you have been arrested for driving under the influence of intoxicants (DUII), you are not alone. More than 10 million people were arrested for driving while under the influence of drugs in 2012. By the time someone is arrested for driving while under the influence of alcohol for the first time, they have driven that way at least 80 times. Your arrest can have serious consequences. A third conviction can land you in jail for up to five years. The fines can run upwards of $15,000 or more. The long terms impact on your career can be devastating. If you are in this situation, you need to get the best DUII attorney you can find.
How to Find the Best DUII Attorney for Your Case:
- Talk to all of the people in your life that you trust. Hands down the best way to find decent goods and services is to get personal recommendations. Given the number of people who have either been arrested for a DUII or something else, there is a really good chance that you know at least one person who has experience with a criminal defense attorney or a DUII attorney. When you get their recommendations, you should not just hire them right away but this gives you a jumping off list.
- Check online. You can look at the American Bar Association website and other professional associations that will have lists of lawyers in your area. After you have your list from your friends and family, add to that list and then research the different criminal law firms. Look at their websites and Google search them.
- Look into the DUII lawyers’ reputations. If you can, find out about how the different law firms are regarded around town. You want a DUII attorney with a stellar reputation. That is not a status thing. This shows that they have experience working with the prosecutors and probably know the lawyer prosecuting your case. That may mean they can get you a better plea deal. More than 96% of all cases end with a plea so this is important. If you do go to trial, having an attorney with a good reputation with the court will help you with the judge.
- Talk to several DUI law firms. Law firms have one free first consultation. Take advantage of that. When you go in make sure you have a list of your questions. The first priority is to get a DUII attorney. You have to remember that, like doctors, lawyers specialize in different aspects of the law. You need an attorney who has a lot of experience dealing with cases like yours. Ask them how long they have been working in DUII law, how much of their time is spent on DUII cases and what their track record is.
- Ask more questions. You know they specialize in DUII law but you should have more questions than that. You need to know who will be working on your case. Will it be the DUII attorney? Will it be a legal assistant? Who will take your calls when you have questions? What is the time frame they are looking at? What is the criminal law firm’s free structure? Some firms want a lump sum up front. Others will allow you pay over time. You need to be perfectly clear about how you will be charged and how much.
- Get references. Ask the law firm if they can give you references for the firm and the DUII attorney who will be working on your case. They may have testimonials on their website but that may not tell you everything you need to know. Ask if it is possible to talk to their former clients and see what the experience working with them was like. This is a great way to learn more about the DUII attorney and the law firm.
Bring arrested for a DUII is a scary and stressful experience. As serious as it is, you will get through it. It may not seem like it, but you will. The right lawyer can do wonders for your case. Do your research and you will find that person.