How Can An Arizona DUI Attorney Help You?
Getting arrested for a DUI is scary, as well as permanently damaging if it goes on your record. There is no better time to employ an Arizona DUI attorney than when the threat of a DUI is looming. You may think that a lawyer is unnecessary or out of your budget, but with an array of offices and available payment plans, there really is no reason why you shouldn’t get some help on your side. After all, this is their specialty, and it’s your life!
Arizona DUI attorneys are available because there is a need for them. Unfortunately, the public simply isn’t learning that it’s unsafe and unwise to drive while under the influence. A lot of people think its okay to have only one drink, perhaps with coworkers after a hard day, but they risk the chance of getting pulled over for a traffic offense only to have the officer smell alcohol on their breath. There is a No Tolerance policy for drinking and driving at this day and age; even if you consider yourself to be a responsible drinker and/or driver. With the increasing number of deaths related to drunk driving, it’s not a surprise that driving under the influence is now a deadly serious topic that has the justice system cracking down hard.
DUIs, if convicted, will become a part of your permanent criminal record. A DUI can be either a misdemeanor or a felony, depending on factors like whether your Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) is above legal limit or if you have a child in the car. It’s also possible to get more than one DUI charge in a single sitting due to multiple circumstances like having drugs in your system. Sentencing will depend on the nature of the offense, but can include: suspension or revocation of your driver’s license, fines, jail time, and possibly the installation of a breathalyzer, or Ignition Interlock Device, in your vehicle in order for it to operate. Add to this the fact that your insurance will also go up and be visible to insurance agents for no less than 39 months, and getting an attorney starts to look pretty good!
An Arizona DUI attorney can help you in many ways. Not only do they know the law extensively, but they can help keep you from being manipulated by those who know you don’t have a clue, such as the prosecuting attorney and law enforcement officials. You alone cannot debate sentencing with the judge, but your lawyer can. If there are loopholes or plea bargains that can be made, you can pretty much bet that the system isn’t going to tell you about them, but your lawyer will.
Law offices can either specialize in DUIs or have attorneys available with specific knowledge on DUI cases. These offices, like Phillips & Associates or the Jaffe Law Firm, offer payment plans that are conducive to your case and try to cater to your income level. Consultations are usually always free of charge. Before hiring them they will review the facts with you, discuss potential sentencing, fines, and/or issues that could initiate a dismissal of your case or reduction in sentence, explain the law to you, and come up with a plan of action. If hired, they file all necessary paperwork with the courts, appear with you (and for you if you can’t appear) in court, present to you all options available, examine police reports, negotiate with judges and prosecutors, provide advocacy and support, and answer any and all questions you may have during your case and often after it has ended. Trying to do all of this on your own would be mind-boggling and stressful. Not only that, if you committed an error while representing yourself, you only have yourself to blame if you end up behind bars or with a sentence that is heavier than expected.
In order to secure your future and hire an Arizona DUI attorney, you may have to let go of some cash in order to stay out of hot water. Not everyone charged with a DUI is a criminal or repeat offender. There are lots of law-abiding people out there who went out for one drink and wound up getting caught for something else. These people have families, jobs, and bills, and a DUI conviction would no less than ruin their life—maybe not permanently but definitely for a while. Single mothers cannot afford to be in jail; one-car families cannot afford to have their vehicle impounded (which will happen upon arrest); and families with one provider cannot afford to have their money dipped into too deeply for fines. Lawyers can help with all of these things.
Of course, not everyone can afford a lawyer. It’s no secret that they don’t come cheap, no matter how valuable their services are. If this is the case with you, keep in mind that you can request a public defender, also known as a court-appointed attorney, if you are facing imprisonment upon conviction. A public defender is available to defendants as per the 6th Amendment and hired by the government to represent those that are too poor to obtain an Arizona DUI attorney. This does not mean that fees for the use of a public defender will not be incurred, but they will be considerably less than a private lawyer.
The fact remains that no one should drink and drive. There is too much risk and not enough reward. When you drink and drive, you don’t only put yourself in jeopardy, but everyone on the road and any passengers you may have. Don’t be the one responsible for taking someone else’s life, or your own. However, if you do find yourself facing a DUI charge, weigh the options and you’ll most likely discover its best to tackle this one with an Arizona DUI attorney.