Charges for driving while impaired or under the influence can vary from a misdemeanor to a felony offense. Consequences often involve a driver’s license revocation, jail time, or even fines of $10,000 or more.
If you’re facing charges or you’re reading this for someone you love, it’s crucial to choose a DUI lawyer who will fight for your rights, walk you through the process, and ensure you get the best outcome for your case.
So, how do you choose a lawyer, knowing everything that’s on the line? Start with these steps.
Don’t Make a Snap Decision
Your future and freedom are on the line, and making the wrong decision can have lasting consequences, from hefty fines to losing your driver’s license. You can’t afford to make a snap decision.
When you choose a DUI lawyer, it’s crucial to consider several factors to ensure they’ll make a good fit for you and your case. For one, don’t go with the first lawyer you find simply because they’re available right now to talk and set up a free consultation.
Time is important, but it shouldn’t be the only deciding factor. Think of it this way. Would you buy the first car you saw after walking onto the lot without a test drive?
If you’re smart, you’ll take the time to learn about the vehicle, including the history report, and take it for a drive to see how it handles.
Do your research, and you’ll find a legal representative that suits your needs.
Ask About Fees
Similar to the point above, you shouldn’t go with the cheapest lawyer because it seems like a good deal at the time. Price is important, as you should stay within your budget. However, you’re also fighting for your future or the freedom of a loved one.
People that go with the absolute cheapest lawyer often struggle with communication, finding calls and questions go unanswered. They don’t know what to expect or what the next step in the process is. As a result, they don’t receive the outcome they wanted.
When fighting a DUI charge, you want a lawyer that will be there for you when you need them. You shouldn’t have to jump through hoops to get your phone calls returned. They should also walk you through all the steps so you know what to expect and how to prepare.
When comparing lawyer costs, ask about their fees and how they calculate those numbers.
Often, lawyers charge an hourly rate when they work on your case. Experienced lawyers might charge more, but they can also take less time to finish the work. Additionally, lawyers may charge more for time spent in the courtroom compared to time spent researching or in the office.
It’s also possible they may charge a flat fee for routine or predictable cases. However, DUI law is very complicated. It involves many factors, such as prior offenses or the speed you were traveling at the time, which can significantly impact the case.
Look at Past Clients and Cases
Reading online reviews is one of the easiest and fastest ways to understand what to expect when you go with a particular law firm. Client reviews and testimonials outline their experience with the lawyer and give you a glimpse into the process.
You can often find a testimonials page on their website. Look for certain phrases that pertain to a lawyer’s ability to communicate, their professionalism and courteousness, and the case results.
Before you choose a DUI lawyer, be sure to ask about whether they’ve won DUI cases in the past and how they defeated the charges. Remember that a past win doesn’t guarantee the same results for your case, but it’s still a good sign that they have experience.
You can also ask to see transcripts or summaries of other cases this lawyer handled. The names of past clients are protected, but these will give you a better idea of what to expect.
Look for Extensive DUI Case Experience
Here in New Jersey, a person is guilty of drunk driving if they are operating a motor vehicle with a Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) of 0.08 percent or higher. However, you can be convicted of a DUI even if your BAC is lower.
There is a zero-tolerance law for any drivers under 21 with alcohol in their system or those that purchase or possess alcoholic beverages.
Law firms often specialize in multiple areas, such as personal injury and criminal defense. You want a lawyer on your side that has extensive experience in DUI law and understands it inside and out.
Here at Maduabum Law Firm LLC, our attorneys will carefully analyze all elements of your case to look for any instances where your rights may have been violated. For instance, we’ll find out if you were lawfully pulled over or whether the officer administering the sobriety tests followed state guidelines.
We’ll fight for you using strong legal defenses to improve your chances of getting a favorable result.
Meet in Person and Trust Your Instincts
After you read reviews and learn about the lawyer’s experience, prepare a list of questions and schedule a consultation to meet with them.
The more prepared you are to discuss your case, the more you’ll get a feel for whether they’re the right fit. Trust your instincts and see if they feel like a good fit for your situation.
Ask yourself if they’re professional, courteous, and knowledgeable when speaking to you. If you have questions, ensure they break down the answer in an easy-to-understand way.
Remember, a consultation is not an engagement retainer. You’ll need to sign a retainer agreement before the lawyer can represent you.
Choose a DUI Lawyer You Can Rely On
Before you choose a DUI lawyer, use these tips to ensure you make the right choice. A DUI charge is a serious issue that can affect your freedom and your future. Partnering with the right lawyer is key to getting the best possible outcome for your case.
Maduabum Law Firm LLC represents clients in Hudson, Essex, Bergen, Union Counties, and beyond. To discuss your DUI case, call us or send us a message and book an appointment today.