When it comes to fighting a DUI charge, it’s not as easy as you might think. In fact, many people who attempt to beat their charges without legal representation wind up suffering from a guilty verdict.
More often than not, proving that you didn’t have alcohol in your system can sometimes be difficult—even if you weren’t drinking or driving at the time. Here’s why this happens.
Factors That Come Into Play when Fighting a DUI
In many states, it is possible to beat a DUI without an attorney. However, there are some things that come into play that make this option less likely.
- The Speed Limit
The higher the speed limit, the more likely it is that a judge will side with the prosecution if you are charged with driving above the speed limit. If the speed limit is 55 miles per hour and you drive 70 miles per hour, that could be considered reckless driving.
- Your Age and Experience With Driving
Judges tend to give more leeway to younger drivers than they do older drivers, so if you are young and inexperienced at driving, this may weigh heavily in your favor when it comes time for sentencing. However, if you have been involved in many accidents or other traffic violations within the past few years, then this could weigh against you too.
- Whether or Not Alcohol Was Involved
This one is pretty obvious — any time someone gets behind the wheel after drinking alcohol (even if they have only had three drinks), they are at risk of being charged with drunk driving (and possibly facing jail time).
Your Options in Court
There are actually two types of court proceedings related to DUI cases: criminal and administrative.
In criminal court, a judge will determine whether or not there is enough evidence against you for a conviction. If so, a jury will hear your case and decide whether or not to convict you based on the evidence presented during trial proceedings.
On the other hand, administrative proceedings involve an employee of the state who has been given special powers by statute to enforce specific laws that affect public safety and welfare. The main difference between a criminal and an administrative proceeding is that in an administrative proceeding, the person being charged has no right to defend him or herself.
In many cases, if you do not have an attorney present at court proceedings, your case is less likely to be dismissed or reduced to a lesser offense. You may also receive jail time instead of probation if the judge decides your case is not severe enough to warrant jail time.
How a Private Attorney Can Help
The best way to beat a DUI is with an experienced attorney. A DUI attorney can help you navigate the legal system and get the best possible outcome in your case, so the first step is finding an attorney who specializes in DUI cases.
DUI attorneys — like ours at Richard P. Davies, Esq. — have access to resources that regular attorneys do not have access to. That could be anything from information about where police officers were at the time of the stop to other details about your situation that could help prove your innocence. We also know what evidence will work best in court and how to use it against the prosecution’s case.
Overall, hiring a DUI attorney is almost always the better decision. There are too many factors involved and too much that can go wrong in a DUI, making hiring an attorney your best option. They know the laws, understand the process, and can help you make the right decisions.