When looking to hire an attorney to fight your DUI case, there is always that question of whether or not it’s worth it. After all, the law empowers you, as a private citizen, to represent yourself in such matters. Indeed, many have done so successfully. However, these success stories are the exception, not the rule. Facing a DUI charge can have severe consequences if you’re inexperienced. If you do an internet search for, say, “a DWI/DUI lawyer in Albany,” you can quickly contact professionals who attend to your case. While hiring an attorney will cost you some money, the cost should not override. 

It would help if you considered how the DUI charge could impact your life in the long run. Besides, most lawyers offer a free initial consultation. It doesn’t hurt to get a professional opinion before making any decisions.

Whether or Not to Hire a DUI Attorney

When facing DUI charges, talking to an experienced attorney specializing in such cases can make a massive difference in the outcome of your case. Depending on your circumstances, you may choose whether you want legal representation or not. Most people would advise you to hire a DUI attorney because it gives you the best chance for a favorable outcome. One favorable outcome is having the charges reduced to a lesser crime or dropped entirely. However, you need to be fully aware that nothing is guaranteed. Sometimes, even the best attorneys may not get you acquitted. It’s always good to get an objective professional opinion about your case and keep your expectations within the confines of reality. Many people erroneously believe that hiring a DUI lawyer will work miracles for them. Whichever DUI attorney you choose to retain will impress this fact upon you.

Drunk Driving Per Se

The blood alcohol concentration (BAC) test measures how much alcohol is in your system. This is usually through a Breathalyzer test. In years past, different states had slightly different definitions of DUI and DWI. With the introduction of the drunk driving per se law, this is no longer the case. The BAC as set by these laws is less than 0.08. If you are found to have a BAC of 0.08 or above, you can be automatically charged with DUI. Per se means ‘as is.’ In such cases, the fact that your BAC was over the limit is all the evidence the state needs to bring you up on DUI charges regardless of whether you exhibited signs of intoxication or impaired driving.

However, additional drunk driving charges can be added to the DUI if the arresting officer can provide clear evidence of the irrational behavior associated with drunk driving. This can include slurred speech patterns and an unsteady gait, all of which will add to your legal problems.

If you hire a DUI attorney, he will most likely advise you to plead these charges. This is because, with a BAC of 0.08 and over, the state has all the evidence needed. Your attorney will probably plead your case based on other mitigating factors. If, for example, you’re a first-time offender and an upstanding citizen with strong ties to the community, this can buy you some leniency during sentencing. Hiring a lawyer from the same area where you were charged with DUI can make a difference. Such a DUI lawyer is most likely knowledgeable about how DUI cases play out and the court system. They can help you get the best outcome given the facts of your case.

Your License May be Suspended

There is only so much a DUI lawyer can do if the authorities have you dead to rights on a DUI charge, especially with a BAC over 0.08. Most states have also passed the administrative license suspension (ALS). This allows law enforcement officials to confiscate your driver’s license and revoke it on the spot if you’ve failed the BAC test. This can also apply if you refuse to take the test. In all these cases, they will suspend your driving privileges—irrespective of whether or not you hire a lawyer. It’s crucial to remember that ALS-enforced license revocation is a separate legal matter from the DUI charges you will face later on. Therefore, hiring a lawyer helps you get through the DUI charges in court. 

In a nutshell, hiring a DUI lawyer is your best shot at getting the most lenient sentence possible. While your DUI lawyer may not work miracles, they can make it more likely that you don’t end up with heavy fines and jail time.

 

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