Driving under influence, commonly referred to as a DUI, is a serious criminal offense. Even on the first instance, it can have long-term consequences if convicted. That it is why it gives you all the more reason to be smart, practically as well as financially, when hiring a DUI lawyer.
However, in order to assess how to hire a good DUI lawyer, one needs to have the knowledge of what actually happens when someone gets booked for a DUI. When caught the first time, a driver is given a temporary license, after which, he has about 10 days to contact the DMV or else the license gets suspended.
Upon contact, the hearing on whether the driver will keep or lose his license gets scheduled. This is just one of the complexities of our legal system in which the duration of the hearing is unknown and without a DUI lawyer, you may be completely out of luck when it comes to your defense.
The Warning Signs
You’d want to avoid a DUI lawyer who is quick to take the case and legal fees and who puts in no effort into trying to get your case dismissed or advises his client to make a guilty plea and take a bad deal. If your lawyer won't fight to get your case dismissed at the stage of the hearing, then it's about time you change the lawyer outrightly.
Sadly, and unfortunately, people only realize that they could have had the charges dropped after they have already entered a guilty plea and paid the fine. If you do not want your lawyer to run away with your retainer fee without actually fighting to have the entire case dismissed, the best choice is to complete your research and find a DUI defense lawyer that you can completely trust, who communicates with you and works to get you what you need to get your life back to normal.
Marks of a Good DUI Lawyer
Always remember that when you hire a lawyer, he or she has to be your best bet for your own interests. In order to achieve that, you should hire an attorney who is best suited to your goals and personality.
In previous times, people would only opt for a lawyer who had a particular reputation in their locality or had maintained good standing with their relatives. However, in the era of the internet, you have a vast pool of lawyers to pick from from the relative comfort of your own home.
Many people do not know this, but there are often local low-cost DUI lawyers available who provide free counseling to those in need through top DUI law firms and take on many pro bono cases.
If the attorney has a good relationship with the prosecutors and has worked on getting deals done, this can be a professional bonus, as opposed to a lawyer who has a negative reputation with the local prosecution system, which can be harmful and unfavorable to his clients. Furthermore, a good association with the court showcases the skills and experience of an attorney which helps no matter the case.
Another point that has to be noted is the size of the firm. The amount of cases and the specialization of the firm can tell you a lot about how much time and energy they can put into your case. A small firm with relatively fewer cases is much more able to work on your case as compared to a larger firm with a long list of clients. You should always select a firm that gives your case the right amount of time and puts all its efforts in getting you off the hook.