Getting a DUI can have major consequences, some of which can be with you for years. Besides the temporary suspension of your driver’s license, fees and fines, court-mandated community service, obligatory attendance to drunk driving education programs, the possibility of spending time in jail, and an increase in the insurance premiums, you may suffer other ramifications in your life. You may find it hard to keep or get a job, find housing, be admitted to educational programs, and more. It is important to take this seriously and start fighting it right away. That is why Patrick McLain Law – DUI lawyer recommends you waste no time in taking these steps as soon as you get your DUI.
In some instances, you may be allowed to leave jail immediately after being charged, so long as you pay your bail and someone picks you up. In others, you may have to spend the night in jail until you sober up. At this time, your license will likely be suspended, and you won’t want to risk incurring any more charges, so get yourself a ride home.
Prior to leaving jail, you will be notified of the date on which you must appear in court regarding your DUI charge. This is a date you do not want to miss under any circumstances. Make sure to note it, put it in your calendar, or do whatever it takes not to forget it. Cancel any other appointments you might have for that day.
If you leave your case to the public defender, you may get unsatisfactory results. They will negotiate with the prosecutor based on the apparent evidence, and your attorney will recommend a plea deal. Once you agree, there is no wiggle room to get the penalties further reduced. With the help of an experienced DUI attorney, however, you have much better odds of getting a dismissal or a reduced sentence. Your attorney can also help you get your license back in a shorter period of time.
While waiting for your court date, you will be unable to drive. Make arrangements to get to and from work and to your other obligations. In some cases, you will be able to apply for a hardship license while you wait to get your license back. A hardship license is limited, but it will allow you to drive to and from work or school or go to your medical appointments.
The first thing you need to do is look your best and get to the courtroom on time. Make sure your clothes are clean, and you are presentable. Bring any paperwork that was requested. If you are pleading not guilty, it may help to keep a journal of the day you were charged, detailing the facts as you remember them. You may also bring testimonies from witnesses and any other document your attorney may require from you.
Getting a DUI is not something to be taken lightly. Hire a private DUI defense attorney to ensure you get the best representation available.