Driving Under the Influence and Driving While Intoxicated is considered by every state in the country as a serious crime. That is why Driving While Intoxicated or Driving Under the Influence charges are handled in a criminal court. Every person charged with DUI has all the right to get legal representation when facing the criminal court.
But a lot of defendants either get the services of private lawyers or they are represented by public legal counsels appointed by the criminal court. In this article, we will take a closer look at some factors people need to consider before they decide what types of legal representation suits your needs.
Getting a legal counsel’s opinion about the case
It is tough for people with no legal training or experience to assess the weaknesses and strengths of a Driving Under the Influence case. The law regarding Driving Under the Influence is very complicated and always changing, and the facts of each case are unique.
That is why getting the opinion of an expert lawyer who specializes in these kinds of situations are very important and can be very valuable to your case. A lot of DWI and DUI attorneys like Albany DWI lawyers give their future clients free consultations.
But even if they pay a small amount of money for the services of a legal counsel, there is a big chance the money spent is worth it. When meeting with the lawyer, you need to bring all the necessary documents like police and medical records or insurance policies to make the best use out of your time and the time of the legal counsel.
It might be a good idea to bring several questions that you want to get answered during your preliminary meeting with the DWI lawyer. The good news is, you do not need to hire the lawyer that you consult with. But meeting them face-to-face is an excellent way to gauge whether you and the lawyer you are planning to hire is on the same page or not.
Cases were getting the services of a DWI lawyer might not be worth it
The other party’s lawyer usually has a standard offer called the first-offense plea. In short, they offer people with a standard first DWI the same deal – which is usually at the bottom of the barrel when it comes to allowable first DWI sentence.
To find out the difference between DUI and DWI, visit https://www.verywellmind.com/dui-vs-dwi-what-is-the-difference-67214.
Generally speaking, a DUI offense will be considered as a standard first DWI if the offending party has no prior DWI convictions or if the offense did not involve any aggravating factors like injuries, accidents or extreme blood alcohol concentration.
Theoretically speaking, the primary standard offer will be the same regardless of whether the person defending is represented by a public attorney provided by the criminal court or they are not represented at all. That is why it seems that hiring a lawyer in standard DUI cases might not worth it.
In some cases, this statement is true, but in reality, the standard offer is usually just your starting point. An experienced Driving While Intoxicated lawyer can sometimes get out of a standard offer by pointing out its weaknesses in prosecution’s cases or bring the extenuating factors to the prosecutor’s attention. A lawyer’s familiarity with the district attorney, the judge and the local practices can help with these kinds of negotiations.
Accepting the standard offer sometimes is not advisable in cases where the person facing the situation has a good and viable defense. That is why before accepting a plea deal, it is a good idea to at least check with an attorney for a legal opinion.
In general, all people facing any criminal charges have the right to get a legal counsel. If you can’t afford to hire a private legal counsel, the court will provide one. Appointed legal counsels are usually from the public attorney’s office and they are paid for by the government.
These types of legal counsels are handling a large number of criminal cases that include a lot of Driving Under the Influence or Driving While Intoxicated. That is why most public legal counsels are usually well acquainted with the judges and district attorneys and know all their tendencies (knowledge can be beneficial if you are doing plea bargaining).
A public attorney also needs to have a proper trial skill since they will take a lot of criminal cases to trial. But being represented by the public attorney’s office has its disadvantages. Legal counsels from the public defender’s office have more caseloads compared to private defenders.
That is why some feel like they and their cases do not get enough attention. And you do not get to choose who from the public defenders’ office will handle your case. You will get who the court will assign to you. Public legal counsel representation will be limited to handling criminal court cases.
To know the importance of public defenders, click here.
A DWI arrest usually leads to two separate proceedings: a criminal court case and “administrative per se” suits with the DMV or the Department of Motor Vehicles. Generally speaking, the person involved who gets the services of a public attorney will have to deal with the Department of Motor Vehicles proceeding on their own.
When you get the services of a private DWI attorney, it is usually to represent you in a Department of Motor Vehicles proceedings, as well as in front of a court. Having the same legal counsel work on every aspect of the case can lead to a better outcome, including shorter license-suspension periods. A lot of defendants see the cost of hiring a private legal counsel.
It can cost defendants between $1,000 to $5,000. If your DWI case goes on trial, it can cost you more, and it is not cheap. And there are a lot of cases where spending more money for the services of a private attorney will not get you a favorable outcome than when you get the services of a public legal counsel.