A DUI charge is a serious one. When you receive a driving under the influence (DUI) charge, it is understood that while you were not able to drive safely, you allegedly chose to do so anyway. A DUI charge tells the court that you behaved in such a way as to put your life, and the lives of other innocent people on the road, at risk.
A DUI charge automatically makes you look like the bad guy. You may therefore want to consider hiring a lawyer to represent you. A DUI lawyer can fight to ensure that judgments are cast aside, and that the details of your case are heard and fully understood by the court so that a fair decision can be made.
A lawyer can provide significant help in the event you are offered a plea bargain. At the Simmrin Law Group, we have helped many clients who came to us when faced with the tough decision of whether to accept a plea bargain. Such a deal can be offered at any point during the case, but you may be able to hold out for a better deal if you have time before the trial.
A plea bargain has its perks. For one thing, by accepting a plea bargain, you can avoid having to go through a costly and unpredictable trial. Even with the best lawyer by your side, there’s no guarantee that the end result of a trial will be a not guilty verdict. However, a lawyer who knows the law may be able to get you a better deal than if you chose to go it alone.
In some cases, a lawyer may even have a relationship with the prosecutor, which can help you when it comes time to negotiate. Further, because an experienced lawyer already has years of negotiation under his or her belt, the lawyer may be better at deciding when it is best to hold out for a better deal, and when you should accept the deal you’ve been offered.
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Reducing Your Sentence
Another way in which you may find a lawyer to be helpful is in reducing your sentence. Reducing your sentence is similar to accepting a plea bargain in that, while you can do it on your own, you may find it to be easier to consult with a lawyer on the best possible decision.
Also helpful is that, if a lawyer cannot get your sentence reduced, he or she may be able to have certain other conditions waived in favor of your taking a plea. For instance, if you agree to plead guilty, your lawyer may be able to have waived the condition of random drug testing while you’re on probation.
Conditions that May Not Change Your Sentence
It is important to be aware of those things in your case that may not be negotiable, whether you hire a lawyer or not. Such things may include:
- The suspension of your license
- Your BAC (blood alcohol level) at the time of the incident
- Your record, which can have an effect on your sentence
- Property damage and/or injuries
With regard to the suspension of your license, this may depend on the nature of the incident, as well as whether you are a repeat offender. As for physical damage or injuries, these are factors that can add additional time and penalties to a sentence. In other words, while you might have been able to negotiate a better deal on just the DUI charge, if these factors are present, your chances drop significantly.
This isn’t to say that it’s guaranteed that they’ll “throw the book at you,” just that your case becomes significantly harder to defend. In this case, you may want to seriously consider hiring a lawyer. A lawyer can research every aspect of your case to ensure that no stone was left unturned in trying to get you the best possible deal under the circumstances.
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Meeting with a DUI Lawyer
If you are still on the fence about whether to hire a lawyer, you have nothing to lose by scheduling a free consultation. Before the meeting, you will want to gather all of the necessary paperwork, including police reports, that you would like the lawyer to review.
You may also want to make a list of questions that you may have so that you don’t forget anything when you sit down with the lawyer to discuss the case. Be as thorough as possible. This will give the lawyer the best possible understanding of your case so that he or she can advise you accordingly.
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DUI Charge? Don’t Go It Alone. Call Us.
If you have been charged with a DUI, and you’re not sure whether you should hire an experienced DUI defense lawyers, give us a call. You will receive a free consultation with no obligation to retain.
Fill out the form to the right, or call us at (310) 997-4688 to speak with one of our lawyers. Our Los Angeles criminal defense lawyers can help you prepare for court by pointing you in the right direction as to what your next steps should be.