The Cost and Benefits of Hiring a DWI/DUI Lawyer
If you’ve been charged with driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol (also known as a DWI or DUI charge), you need to hire an experienced DWI Attorney in Houston immediately. Although hiring an attorney can be expensive, there are many consequences to a DWI charge. Criminal defense attorneys in Houston, TX, know that it’s crucial to start working on a case immediately after being cited, even if you aren’t arrested or booked into jail because of the offense. If you’re convicted of a DUI you can lose your driver’s license, clearance at work, ability to enroll in school, end up paying a substantial fine, or serve jail time. A good criminal defense attorney can help minimize these consequences and can help clear your name if you’re innocent of the charge. Here are some of the benefits of hiring a DWI/DUI lawyer.
Navigating the Legal System
Most of the time, people that are arrested for DUI aren’t hardened criminals. After being charged with a DUI, you’ll probably be surprised by how complex our legal system is. To defend yourself against a DUI charge, you’re required to file paperwork, attend administrative hearings with the driver’s license division, attend court hearings, and gather the evidence you need to protect yourself. This can be daunting while dealing with the expense and loss of privilege associated with this type of charge. DUI attorneys can help you with all aspects of navigating this system. DUI attorneys assist clients from the moment of citation until the jury determines the verdict in the case,
Explain Whether the Officers Had Cause to Pull You Over
One of the most important aspects of your case will be whether the officers had sufficient justification to pull you over for driving while intoxicated. Experienced attorneys know that to make a traffic stop, an officer must reasonably suspect you’re guilty of a crime. Officers can pull you over for a less serious offense, say an expired registration or a broken tail light, and then subsequently require you to submit to a test to determine how intoxicated you are. Your attorney can help you determine whether the officers followed proper protocol and acted within the law during your traffic stop. If the officers violated procedure, your attorney may be able to reduce your charges or even convince the judge to dismiss the case against you.
If you decide not to hire an attorney, it’s important to remember the costs associated with a DUI conviction can be severe. DUI convictions can result in thousands of dollars in fines, costs, and damage. The court can also suspend or revoke your driver’s license (for years, in some cases). You can also end up serving jail time, and being required to live on probation after your incarceration period. A good attorney knows that they can’t promise these consequences won’t apply to you, but most attorneys work to minimize these costs and discomforts.
Choosing the Right Lawyer
Once you’ve chosen to hire a lawyer, you need to choose the right one. You don’t want your case blown wide open due to an inept attorney. There are hundreds of good options in the Houston area, and finding the right attorney to represent you can be frustrating. Don’t let that deter you from seeking legal help. Ask for references, and try to choose lawyers with DWI specific experience to assist you.