I get asked all the time…”Do I need a DUI attorney for my case?” or “Can't I just represent myself and get the same result?"
First of all, not all DUI arrests end up as DUI convictions! That being said, how will you know whether pleading guilty or going to trial is a good choice? It depends on a lot of factors such as the evidence, the validity of the chemical tests, the witnesses, and your past record. What charge should you plead to? Wh is going to help you make the right decision? Your lawyer will.
Your lawyer can analyze the evidence. The decision of whether to accept a plea bargain or go to trial depends on the prosecution's evidence. Sure we all know that .08 is the legal limit for DUI, but what if you were at or near that limit. Is there validity to the result? Did the police have a legal reason to stop you? Was it a DUI checkpoint? What test was given? Were the tests conducted according to the law? Was the machine properly maintained, and was it calibrated? Your attorney knows these things and can analyze the evidence against you. After the analysis should be the only time you make a decision of whether to plea bargain or set the case for trial.
Your lawyer is trained to negotiate. Pleading guilty isn't just about admitting to what happened. Entering a plea is about getting a better outcome than what you could get if you went to trial and lost. Are you prepared to negotiate the charges and the punishment with the District Attorney and/or the judge? Your lawyer is. Negotiation is a key part of being an attorney. Your lawyer is on your side. In a DUI case, the District Attorney is against you, and the judge is neutral (maybe). No matter how nice those people might be, they are not… and never will be… on your side! The only person who will be able to give you help and be on your side is your attorney.
A DUI attorney can also explain the consequences that you could possibly face at the DMV and in court. Instead of asking around or hearing the wrong information, the DUI attorney is a knowledgeable and experienced professional. Does protecting your driver's license, record, and perhaps your job or career really have a price tag?
The simple answer to, "Should I get an attorney? is ABSOLUTELY yes!