Your life may have been changed forever. Being stopped for a DUI is a very serious offense. Guilty or not, you have some big decisions to make about how to handle your case. We realize that this is a scary time and that your mind is racing, which is why we have put together a checklist of sorts to guide you through the process.
Talk to a DUI Attorney
Even if you plan to plead guilty, you should at least consult with a DUI attorney to look into your case and see if your DUI rights have been violated. DUIRights.com offers a free evaluation of your case, so why not take advantage of it. Be sure to gather all relevant information before consulting with the attorney so he or she can give you an honest assessment of the best course of action for your particular case.
Make All Court Dates
Once you are arraigned, you will be given numerous scheduling dates for your case. Make sure that you make them all. If you do hire an attorney, your attorney can represent you at some of these dates. Early on in the process, you are not in danger of being sentenced, so do not be scared about going to court and not coming home. These dates are to confirm your representation (if you hire an attorney), as well as motion and discovery hearings.
Develop a Defense Strategy
If you plan to fight the charges, you and your attorney will have to decide on the best strategy to refute the charges. Where your rights violated during the arrest? When did you consume alcohol compared to when the chemical tests were taken? Were you asked to participate in non-standardized roadside testing?
Getting Your License Back
In most states, your license is suspended the moment you are charged or refuse to take chemical tests. However, most states also have laws in place that allow you to get your license back earlier than the suspension dictates. Generally, you will have to pay some type of fee or fine as well as pass a driving test or complete an alcohol or drug education programming.
This is likely to be a very traumatic experience, but you will get through it. With the help of an experienced DUI attorney, you may even be able to avoid a DUI conviction. Take advantage the free evaluation and plenty of information about DUI arrests and strategies to defend yourself against the charges.