If you’ve been arrested for a DUI incident, panic may set in.
Once the fog clears, you need to take the proper steps to start fighting your DUI arrest and/or charge. Well over a million Americans go through a DUI case every year and not all of them were valid. If you feel like you’ve been wrongfully accused, then you’ve got to take action.
Today, we’re going to tell you everything you need to do after a DUI arrest. These first crucial steps will help determine the outcome of your case.
Understand Your Rights
As an American citizen, you’re afforded some civic rights after you’ve been arrested. One of them is the right to remain silent, which is what you should do until you’ve discussed your case with a lawyer.
In many DUI cases, people speak too soon and their words are often held against them in court.
Take Stock of Events
In your silence, take stock of everything that happened leading up to your arrest. Every detail matters, so make a mental note or, if possible, jot down the following things:
Where and when you were pulled over.
Details on the nature of the field sobriety tests/breathalyzer that you performed.
Any conversational exchanges between you and the officer.
Anything that seemed unusual.
The more you can coherently recollect and relay to your lawyer, the better for your case.
Call a DUI Lawyer
Your first phone call should be to a reputed DUI lawyer, regardless of whether you intend to plead guilty or contest the charges. Don’t just call any lawyer because you need someone that specializes in these kinds of cases.
Make sure you get an understanding of the extent of their experience, who will be handling your case, what they think the outlook of the case is, and how much they’ll be charging for your case before hiring them.
Understand Your Case
Having an understanding of the consequences of being found guilty in the case will prepare you for the worst. It’ll depend on the state in which you reside, for example, in Texas, the penalty for a first-time offender can get all the way up to 180 days in jail and/or a $2,000 fine.
Those are worst-case scenarios, but if you get a good lawyer that can look at the details and find holes, you could get a much smaller penalty or get off altogether.
What’s really important is that you don’t commit this crime a second time. If you do, the penalties get exponentially harsher and you could run the risk of actual jail time and losing your license.
However, if enough time has passed since your DUI without any other offenses, you may be able to get it expunged. If this applies to you, talk to your DUI lawyer about expungement.
Keep Your Cool After a DUI Arrest
After a DUI arrest, it’s easy to let yourself fall into a panic. With the right legal representation, however, charges can be minimized or even dropped. If you’ve been arrest for driving under the influence in Austin, contact James Fletcher Law right away.