How to Find a Reputable DUI Attorney
DUI’s don’t look good on your driving record or your criminal record. In fact, having a criminal record from a DUI can reduce your chances of landing steady work and can increase your chances of repeatedly running into the law for the same offenses. Alcohol addiction can be a serious problem and statistics show that about a third of people that are arrested or convicted for driving under the influence are recurring offenders. Every year over 1 million people are arrested from driving under the influence of alcohol or narcotics, and if you happen to be one of them, you will need the best attorney you can get. Here are some ways you can find a reputable DUI attorney.
Your first stop is usually the state bar association. In order to practice law in a specific state, you need to pass your bar exam. The bar association will have a list of all licensed and certified lawyers within your state. In addition, most state bar associations have a free referral system. You can either do a quick search on their website or call the number they have available. Once you get them on the phone you can ask them for a list of reputable DUI attorneys.
Next, once you have a list of lawyers, it is important to do your due diligence. You can either watch them in action – most court proceedings are open to the public – or you can research their name online. Chances are that previous clients have made comments or reviews on a specific DUI attorney online. You typically want to know whether or not an attorney has a good track record of keeping people out of a jail. In most cases, with people who have severe alcohol additions, they can have their DUI thrown out if they attend some kind of rehabilitation center, which is oftentimes much better than jail.
When you do meet with DUI attorneys, it is important to ask them some basic questions. You will know if they are reputable or not if they can answer your questions truthfully and without hesitance. You generally want to know what their rates are, how long the proceedings will be, if they expect you will get your license suspended or spend time in jail. If they can’t answer any of these questions, chances are that they are not knowledgeable and can end up getting you in much more trouble than you are already in.
Lastly, you typically don’t want to go with a DUI attorney that you learned about from a daytime television advertisement or a bus bench. These people, while they might have passed the bar, aren’t entirely competent. At the end of the day, your best bet might be to ask one of your co-workers, friends or family members if they can recommend a good DUI lawyer. It might be wise to ask them in confidence, because you don’t want run the risk of having people judge you too harshly. At the end of the day, a reputable and qualified DUI attorney can mean the difference between jail and freedom, or perhaps even recovery.
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