A Driving Under the Influence (DUI) conviction can be devastating. Fines, a suspended driver’s license, and even jail time are common consequences. Long-term impacts can include increased auto insurance rates, a damaged professional reputation, diminished employment opportunities, and a record of wrongdoing that appears on the most rudimentary background check.
Everyone makes mistakes. It is important to understand, however, that if you are facing a DUI charge then the best protection against such consequences is to hire the best DUI attorney available. Let us share three things to look for when making a decision about which attorney to hire.
1. Experience and Training. You could conceivably hire anyone who practices law to defend you against a DUI charge, but it goes without saying that your prospects dramatically increase when represented by an attorney who specializes in DUI cases and who has years of experience handling them. An attorney with deep knowledge of DUI laws in Florida, as well as your city, combined with the benefits of nuanced experience, is perhaps the biggest advantage any defendant could have in a DUI case.
Keep in mind that a frequently overlooked aspect of experience is an attorney’s relationships with prosecutors. Good relations underscore professionalism and goodwill, whereas poor relations with prosecutors and police may be the result of unfavorable past legal tactics that could put an attorney’s clients in the position of being unduly prejudiced against.
2. Success in Court. Experience and professionalism are reassuring, but the bottom line is avoiding convictions and winning cases. With such high stakes, it is critical to assess a prospective attorney’s track record in court regarding DUI cases. If results are underwhelming, then you might want to look elsewhere.
3. Ethics. Even if you found the absolute best DUI attorney available and his or her record in court was nothing short of stellar, hiring them is a legitimate risk if he or she has a history of malpractice or sanctions by their state bar association. Judges tend not to look kindly on lawyers with spotty ethical records, and your DUI case could hang in the balance. You can review an attorney’s disciplinary records on our state bar association’s website.
We know this is a difficult time for you. We encourage you not to wait to get the local representation you need. You are welcome to contact us, day or night, to schedule a free case evaluation.