If you’ve been arrested for drinking and driving, your first call should be to an experienced DUI lawyer. There are a number of things a DUI attorney can do for you other than aggressively defending you in court. In fact, an attorney’s pre-trial work is absolutely critical. In many cases, it can help a defendant avoid trial altogether. Here are some things your DUI lawyer can do for you.
Assist with Your DMV Administrative Review Hearing
After a DUI arrest in Florida, you have 10 days to schedule an administrative review hearing at the DMV. If you fail to do so within the 10-day window, you’ll automatically have your license suspended. Your attorney can help you schedule this hearing. Your attorney also helps increase the chances that you appeal to the board and keep your license while you wait for your criminal proceedings.
Challenge Evidence Presented Against You
Most of the evidence presented against a DUI defendant can be questioned or challenged. For example, breathalyzer tests are inaccurate, or the officer didn’t properly administer the test. Field sobriety tests also have a high rate of inaccuracy. The arresting officer’s observations of slurred speech or glassy eyes could be attributed to medical conditions or fatigue. An experienced DUI attorney will challenge each piece of evidence presented against you in your case. Therefore, if much of the evidence is dismissed, you stand a good chance of the charges being dropped or reduced.
Help You Determine Whether or Not to Go to Trial
Much of the pre-trial work is gathering evidence that supports your innocence and deconstructing evidence against you. If the prosecution’s case begins to weaken, they may offer a plea deal that reduces your charges. Or, you may have the charges against you dismissed entirely. Your DUI lawyer can help you evaluate any plea deals offered, what evidence the prosecution has against you, and help you determine whether or not it is in your best interest to fight the charges in court. Depending on your case, it may be wise to go to court and take the small risk of a guilty verdict if your case is strong. In other cases, it may be better to accept a plea deal and reduced charges.
Contact Okaloosa criminal defense attorney T. Martin Knopes today for a consultation to discuss your case and what your next step should be by calling (850) 683-0700.