When you first get your driving license, the instructor, your family, and everyone in your life drum many things in your ears. The top on the list might have been to ensure that you use your seatbelt or that you never drive under the influence of drugs or alcohol. This is because getting a DUI charge is serious business.
Not only is driving under the influence a serious crime, but it also causes harm to people. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, approximately one-third of all traffic crash fatalities in the U.S involve drunk drivers. The preceding shows that DUIs are much more common than people think.
The US Department of Justice records that more than 1 million drivers were arrested for driving under the influence in 2016. If the police charged you with a DUI and are wondering if you should get a lawyer, this article answers the question. To learn more, contact an experienced Boise DUI lawyer today.
What Are Your Choices?
When the police charge you for a DUI, you have three choices of representation. You can choose to represent yourself, get a private lawyer, or a public defender.
While you are entitled to a public defender, you can choose to defend yourself in court. You will have to weigh your pros and cons if you decide to do this. Ask yourself important questions such as:
Do I have the legal experience required to assess this case? Do I have enough understanding of the administrative processes it takes to ensure a favorable outcome?
Answering these questions sincerely will help you understand if you are willing to represent yourself for a DUI charge. It takes years for Boise DUI lawyers to gain enough knowledge to represent people in court. So, you should not take it lightly if you are not sure what to do. Also, judges might not be too patient with you if you do not understand the rules to follow while in court.
Using a Public Defender
If you are facing a DUI charge, you have a right to an attorney. If you cannot afford one, the court will appoint an attorney from the public defender’s office. Most public defenders have handled quite many DUI cases before, so they know what to do.
However, you must also understand that a public defender has a large caseload. They do not have the liberty to pick and choose like private lawyers. As such, your case might not get the attention it requires for you to win.
Also, the public defender’s jurisdiction only goes as far as the criminal court. It means that you might have to represent yourself in the administrative per se proceedings of your DUI charge.
Getting a Private Lawyer
If you can afford one, hire a private lawyer. A private Boise DUI attorney will represent you in the administrative proceedings and criminal court. Of course, this increases your chances of a reduced license suspension.
Also, Boise DUI lawyers typically have lighter caseloads than public lawyers. It means that they can focus their resources on representing you and helping you get a favorable outcome. Even though hiring a private lawyer can be expensive, it is usually worth it as a DUI attorney is more likely to help you minimize the time you spend in court.
If you are a very busy person, this time saved is essential. In addition, if your lawyer is experienced, they will have an in-depth understanding of the law and use it to your advantage. They could even help you to get a better plea bargain or get your case dismissed.
On top of other advantages are the private consultation sessions you get with lawyers. You can have one-on-one sessions where you ask questions and set your mind at ease.
Is It Always a Good Idea to Hire a Lawyer?
In some cases, some people decide that it is too much effort to hire a lawyer. This occurs mostly in first offenses. Prosecutors usually have the same deal for anyone who has no prior DUI convictions. As such, whether or not you have an attorney, you may be likely to get the same standard offer.
The standard offer is usually a starting point for negotiations. Your Boise DUI lawyer could renegotiate until you get an offer that works for you. They can do this by highlighting weaknesses in the prosecutor’s case. If you were representing yourself, you might not have known that.
Let’s Help You Out!
Are you in Boise and facing a DUI charge? Let our experienced Boise DUI attorneys examine your case and proffer solutions to help you. Book a free consultation with us now to get started.