If you’ve been arrested for DUI (Driving Under the Influence of Drugs or Alcohol) in California, you may be wondering if you need to hire a DUI lawyer. While every DUI case is different, our best advice is to at least discuss your case with a Los Angeles DUI lawyer who specializes in DUI cases.
Trying to handle a DUI charge on your own is not advisable. For most DUI lawyers, the initial consultation is free. At the Simmrin Law Group, we make no promises regarding the outcome of your case, but many times, we can help you get the DUI charges against you reduced or even dismissed altogether.
What If You’ve Already Been Arrested For DUI?
If you’re already been released by the police department and haven’t yet contacted an attorney, you may choose to interview more than one Los Angeles DUI lawyer before deciding who to hire to represent you. That makes total sense — you want to find someone who is experienced, someone who sympathizes with your case, and someone who you can afford.
If you’re calling a DUI lawyer from jail, you will still want to ask some basic questions. You also need to be prepared to provide the DUI lawyer or his/her staff with a copy of your police report, bail paperwork, previous offenses if any, etc. They may ask you multiple questions for each question you ask them.
Below we list some good questions to ask, which are broken down by area.
Questions About Your Lawyer’s Experience:
- How long have you been representing DUI clients?
- How many DUI cases do you handle in a year?
- If you handle cases other than DUI cases, what percentage of the cases you take on are DUI cases?
- Do you have any special training related to DUI cases?
- How often do cases end in a plea agreement? How are the charges reduced?
- How often do you take cases to trial?
- Are you familiar with the prosecutor in my case? How about the judge?
- Do you practice in my county on a regular basis?
- Do you have experience representing people at the DMV? Will you represent me both in court and at the DMV hearing?
Questions on Legal Fees & Rates:
- Is the first consultation really free?
- What and how do you charge after that? Hourly? Flat rate fee? How much?
- Are there extra fees, like for expert witnesses or blood sample re-testing?
- Will I get one big bill, or separate bills along the way?
- What form of payment do you accept?
Questions on Possible Outcomes to Your Legal Case:
- Can you get my charges reduced? Beware a DUI lawyer who guarantees this. Every case is different, and there are no guaranteed outcomes.
- Is a plea agreement a possibility?
- Are there any motions you can make, like a motion to suppress evidence?
- Is there anything that goes in my favor on my DUI case? What factors go against me?
- Should we take a plea or go to trial?
Questions Might Be Unique to Your Case
Of course, depending on your specific case, there may be additional questions you want to ask, including questions about penalties for first time offenders or repeat offenders, how a conviction will affect your CDL license, and more. Most lawyers and their staff are happy to answer any questions you have. At your initial consultation with each law firm, you’ll get a feel for what answers you’re looking for, and that can help you decide who to hire to defend you in your DUI case.
Penalties for a DUI in Los Angeles
You should know that penalties for a DUI conviction can be severe, especially if this is not a first offense. So it’s important to get a good lawyer to help you avoid a harsh outcome. Penalties include:
- Fines up to $3000
- Jail time up to 1 year
- Suspended license for up to 3 years
- Completion of a mandatory drug or alcohol treatment program
- And more
All of these penalties can snowball into losing your job, ruining your reputation, or even tearing your family apart. Our goal is to get the best possible outcome for you and your family.
Get a FREE Consultation With a Los Angeles DUI Lawyer
Whatever the circumstances of your DUI case are, you need a lawyer working with you to help make sure you get the best possible outcome for you and your family. If you or a loved one has been charged with DUI, you need an experienced Los Angeles DUI lawyer on your side.