If you’re facing a DUI or DWI charge, you may be wondering how to deal with it. Many people wrongly assume that a DUI is a traffic offense when it is really a crime. Litigation occurs in criminal court, and you are being charged with a misdemeanor or even a felony, not a traffic ticket!
Here are a few things you should consider when charged with a DWI or DUI:
1. Finding a Good DUI Attorney might not be easy.
Attempting to find an attorney or lawyer can be difficult, especially for a first-time offender. If this is your first offense, you may choose to proceed without a lawyer, but a good lawyer can help you navigate the court system and see if a plea deal is available.
If this is your second offense or higher, you definitely need the help of a lawyer. Look for a lawyer that specializes in DWI and DUI cases, and try to meet with at least two lawyers before you decide who to go with.
2. Figure Out How You’re Going to Pay your DUI fine and legal fees.
You’ll likely have two costs when facing a DUI or DWI conviction: court fines and legal fees. Make sure you’re prepared for both. DWI fines in the State of Texas could be up to $10,000. If you’re unable to pay your DUI or DWI fines or penalties, it may result in jail time.
Reach out to friends and family if you know you’ll have trouble with this part. You can pay them back later, but the judge will not take ‘later’ as an answer. If you’re worried about not being able to pay legal fees, talk to your lawyer up front about the total costs for representing you. You may want to look into a legal protection plan, which can offer legal help at a lower cost.
3. Investigate Your Case and the Law.
You should also make sure that you were rightly charged. DUI charges are usually pretty irrefutable, but if your lawyer can help you find a loophole, or you were treated unfairly, you may be able to file a lawsuit to counter the charges against you. Your best chance of fighting a DWI or DUI is with a qualified attorney that specializes in these cases.
The most important piece to remember is that once you are charged with a DUI, you are a criminal in the eyes of the court. You need to be efficient in finding yourself a defense and be prepared. DUIs and DWIs are no joke, because driving under the influence could hurt not only you, but others on the road. Be prepared and professional with your case from start to finish, and use the charge as an opportunity to learn about yourself and your responsibilities as a driver.