Trusted Representation In Florida Since 1987

Q&A – DUI (Attorney James Adams)

What does a DUI attorney do?

Defends a person who has been charged with the offense of driving under the influence. This means that the driver has been accused of driving or being in actual physical control of an operable motor vehicle while his/her normal faculties are impaired, or while the driver has a BAC of .08 or higher.

How much does a DUI attorney cost?

Sometimes the State does not have sufficient evidence of the offense charged, or, for example, the evidence upon which the State is relying was gathered after a stop in which law enforcement did not have sufficient probable cause to stop. This affects the amount of time and other resources that the attorney anticipates devoting to presenting the best defense possible. The fee for this type of case is going to be higher than in a case in which the facts and circumstances of the stop and arrest are heavily in favor of law enforcement or heavily in favor of the accused driver. Be careful about shopping for the lowest fee. If the attorney’s fee is the only motivating factor in selecting an attorney, and you want the absolute cheapest attorney, that’s exactly what you will get.

What are the penalties for a DUI conviction?

The penalties vary with the offense charged which depends on whether you have had a prior conviction or convictions, whether the BAC test showed the level of alcohol above .08 and below .15, or whether the BAC was “enhanced” which is over .15, you were traveling alone or with underage passenger(s), whether the driving involved and accident with injury.

Can a DUI attorney help me avoid a conviction?

The goal of every DUI attorney is an acquittal or a nolle presequi (dismissal of case by the State) however if those outcomes are not possible, the role of an attorney is to minimize the penalties or negotiate a reduced charge, for example sometimes the DUI charge is reduced to a reckless driving offense.

How to choose the right DUI attorney for my case?

Determine whether the attorney has jury trial experience with DUI cases and if so, over how many years, how many cases and whether some of the cases were felony DUI charges and you should ask for examples of the results the attorney has achieved.

What are the potential defenses for a DUI charge?

Probable cause for the DUI stop, insufficient evidence of impairment, challenging the results of the breathalyzer (or other chemical testing), challenging whether the defendant was in actual physical control of an operable motor vehicle. These are some examples. The important thing to keep in mind is that a criminal defendant is not required to prove innocence, rather it is the State who must prove guilt.

What should I do if I’ve been arrested for DUI?

Always remember that the criminal defendant is not required to give evidence against himself (5th amendment). Admitting drinking to law enforcement is usually a bad idea.

How long does a DUI case typically take?

There is no typical number. When the State has little to no good evidence against you, the case moves quickly. Likewise, if you were obviously impaired and the State has proof, the case moves quickly. Close calls, where the State has evidence, and the Defendant has powerful defenses take longer. When each side has faith in its case, things move more slowly and may end up being tried to a jury. Some resolve right away, some take up to or more than one year.

What are the consequences of refusing a breathalyzer test?

Department of HWMV can suspend driving privileges upon refusal to submit to chemical testing of breath, or urine, and in certain circumstances, blood.

Can a DUI attorney help with license suspension?
An attorney can represent you for both the DUI charge and for the DHSMV Administrative suspension hearing.