There are many misconceptions concerning DUIs. We will address some of these today, but if you have any other questions about DUI Law in Georgia, please contact our offices today. The Law Office of Richard Lawson and his team of Georgia DUI Attorneys have over 21 years of experience and are here to help you 24/7. We understand that DUI's do not always happen during regular working hours, so we are here for you whenever it happens.
Myth #1: Any attorney can represent you in a DUI case:
Many people assume that lawyers are trained to handle any case that comes their way. However, nothing could be further from the truth. Most attorneys specialize in one area of the law. They may have 30 years of experience but have never handled a DUI case. However, if you walk into an office and ask for an attorney to represent you in a DUI case, most lawyers will agree to represent you, even if they have never handled criminal matters. It is pure hubris when an attorney assumes he or she can handle a DUI case when they have little or no experience.
DUI cases are fact intensive and require an extensive knowledge of DUI law, and procedure, including scientific testing and sobriety testing. If you have been accused of drunk driving, you need an attorney that will zealously represent you because an unjustified conviction for a DUI may have repercussions that last for the rest of your life.
Myth #2: There is no way to win a DUI case:
This myth is not just believed by members of the public but also by many attorneys who do not specialize in Georgia DUI Defense. We take cases to trial every month and win a good number of them. Additionally, sometimes winning a case means getting the best possible outcome. For many people having the charge reduced to a different offense, such as reckless driving, is a huge win. For others, a win may be a favorable plea bargain that helps a client avoid jail time or one that saves a person's license.
The formula for success in a DUI case begins with an extensive investigation of the case, an aggressive motion practices, and a presentation of a well-organized case.
Numerous people just plead guilty because they do not think their case can be won. However, let me assure you, they can be won! It can sometimes be a long process, but the alternative is much worse. Nothing worthwhile in life is easy.
Myth #3: Drunk driving is a minor offense:
You may know many people with a DUI conviction, and it may not seem like a big deal. However, it is a serious misdemeanor offense, with many direct and collateral consequences.
The consequences of a DUI conviction can include losing your license, significant jail time, or substantial fines. None of these penalties should be taken lightly because they not only affect you, but they will affect your family. You may have to report DUI convictions to potential employers, and losing your license will have obvious repercussions.
While DUI's might be common, a conviction is not something you should just accept because it has happened to others.
Myth #4: Everyone charged with a DUI is guilty:
A charge is never the same as a conviction. In some DUI cases, the police make mistakes in their administration of field sobriety testing and in their overall investigative procedures.
In our system of law, if the police make mistakes, it may make it impossible for the State to present a successful case. A knowledgeable DUI defense attorney knows how to challenge the police investigation and the results of incorrectly administered testing.
Even if you blew over the .08 limit that does not mean that you are guilty. Motions may be filed to suppress the breath test results if they were not given correctly. Additionally, experts can be hired to challenge the reliability of the breath test machine. Those experts can also explain how certain environmental factors or medical conditions can affect the result of the breathalyzer.
Myth #5: All courts handle DUI cases the same:
When a person “knows someone” who received a particular outcome in a court, they assume that the same outcome is available in every court. Unfortunately, the fact that someone got a good outcome in one court has no bearing on the potential results available in another court.
For one thing, everyone's case is different. The facts of one person's case will certainly be different from another person's case. Each person will have performed differently in field sobriety testing, and the results of their chemical testing may also be different. Some people also refuse testing while others take some or all of the tests.
Even if two people have similar cases, the human element will be different. Every judge is different. Some are more prosecution-oriented, and others are more likely to listen to the arguments of the defense.
Additionally, in every DUI case, there is a prosecutor who will also have his or her opinions, beliefs, and political pressures.
The point is that each case is different and must be viewed as an independent legal problem.
The Law Office of Richard Lawson never assumes that you are guilty. A DUI conviction on your record is a big deal, and it is always worth it to see if it is possible to fight your charges. Call now so we can help you from day one.