Driving a vehicle under the influence of alcohol or any drug is considered a serious offense in all states across the USA. The criminal courts deal with DWI cases. A defendant is entitled to represent himself/herself in the criminal court. However, it will be wise of you to be represented by a court-appointed public defender or hire a private lawyer. This blog discusses some of the most important factors worth your consideration when figuring out the type of legal representation suitable in your case.
Ask an Attorney’s Opinion about Your DWI Case
It’s not easy for someone with zero legal training or experience to evaluate both the strong and weak points of a DWI case. You should know that a DWI case is extremely complicated and keeps on changing constantly. What makes DWI cases more complex is every case is different from others. Therefore, approaching a lawyer for what the professional thinks about your case matters a lot to someone with a DWI allegation.
Most DWI attorneys offer free consultation on their first meeting with the clients. However, in some cases, you may have to pay a little but it is worth spending. Carry your police reports and other relevant documents while visiting a Rochester DWI attorney. Also, make a list of questions to ask the lawyer as it will help you decide if the professional is the right person to represent you in the court.
It’s not a compulsion for you to hire a lawyer you have consulted. But a face-to-face meeting is the best way to guess if the attorney you want to hire can work out things in your favor.
Sometimes, You Can Deal with a DWI Case Without a Lawyer’s Intervention.
Usually, prosecutors have a standard plea offer for the first-time DWI offenders if the person has no previous DWI convictions and the offense involves no aggravating consequences, such as injuries, accidents or high BAC (Blood Alcohol Concentration).
Theoretically, the standard offer remains the same irrespective of whether you are defended by a public prosecutor, private lawyer or have none to represent your case. Therefore, it boils down to the fact that if it is your first DWI offense, a lawyer is not worth hiring. It rings true in some cases but practically, the standard first-time plea offer is only a starting point.
Experienced DWI lawyers are able to reduce the standard offer by drawing the prosecutor’s attention to mitigating factors or revealing the weakness in the prosecution case. A lawyer’s knowledge about local DWI laws and familiarity with the district attorney and judge play a role in these kinds of negotiations.
Court-Appointed Public Defenders
All DWI defendants are entitled to hire a lawyer. If you are short on money to hire a lawyer, the court will appoint an attorney to represent you. Appointed lawyers are usually associated with a public defender’s office.
The DWI defendants hire private lawyers if they can afford it. The lawyer will take you through the DMV proceedings in the criminal court. Hiring the same lawyer, who will be able to work out on both aspects of your DWI case, is likely to ensure better consequences, including license suspension for a brief period.