Habersham County DUI Lawyer

Habersham County DUI Attorney - Habersham County DUI Lawyer

Being arrested and charged with DUI is, without exception, an unpleasant and daunting experience.  Perhaps you have never been in trouble with the law before, and now you find yourself in an unknown world.  You are probably frustrated, and you may not know where to turn. Working with the police, judges, prosecutors, and probation officers can be very intimidating.  Add the humiliation of the experience and the possibility of jail time, and you might begin to feel like there isn't a person in the world you can trust.

If you have been charged with DUI in Habersham County Georgia, we are here to help.


Driving Under the Influence − DUI − occurs everywhere. No small town or municipality is free from it, as it crosses all social-economic groupings.  A person can be charged with DUI in several ways.  The first is called DUI per se, which means that an individual submitted to the state-administered chemical test and tested over the legal limit of 0.08. The second is called "DUI Less Safe," which means that an individual is under the influence to the extent that he is a "less safe driver."  A person who declines to submit to the state-administered test is charged with DUI Less Safe.

In Georgia, a driver can be charged with DUI for driving under the influence of illegal drugs or prescribed medications.  That is known as DUI Drugs.  A charge of DUI Drugs is particularly complicated, as it is possible to be arrested for DUI even if the medicines or drugs did not cause impairment but remained in your system at the time of testing. For example, marijuana metabolites, some of which do not cause impairment, can remain in the blood for up to 30 days after use.


Using an experienced Habersham County DUI Attorney is a sensible way to navigate the complicated court process and relieve some of the stress that goes along with the alarming experience of getting arrested for DUI. Choosing a Habersham County DUI Lawyer who has previously been a prosecutor is an even better choice. Richard Lawson has served as a DUI Prosecutor in North Georgia. As a result, he knows the complexities of the law process and has many years of expertise and practical knowledge that benefits his clients every single day.

For over twenty five years, Richard Lawson has been safeguarding his clients' rights under the law in Habersham County and all throughout North Georgia. As a previous DUI prosecutor, he knows each aspect of a DUI situation. You can find his reviews on Avvo.


GA DUI LICENSE SUSPENSION -- YOUR 30-DAY WARNING - The State of Georgia expects drivers to abide by certain rules and regulations when they issue a person his or her driver's license.  Remember, a person's ability to drive in Georgia is a privilege, not a right, and can be taken from someone who violates state DUI laws.  A license suspension for DUI is automatic if a hearing is not requested promptly.

The officer that arrests you for DUI has two cases against you: a   criminal court case and an Administrative License Suspension (ALS) case.  The court case begins on the court date noted on the DUI citation.  The ALS case begins as soon as the citation is filed and there are only THIRTY (30) days to file a request for a hearing or an ignition interlock device or your driver's license will automatically be suspended.  Richard Lawson and his team will immediately file the request for a hearing to KEEP YOUR LICENSE FROM BEING SUSPENDED.  The State of Georgia requires a $150 fee to set the ALS hearing.  Let our experienced Habersham County DUI Attorneys protect your ability to drive in Georgia.

Unless you request a hearing before the 30-day time frame, your driver's license will automatically be suspended. If you declined testing of your blood, breath, or urine, your license would automatically be suspended for  ONE YEAR, with no chance for a limited license or work permit. If you complied with testing, however, your license suspension could only be 30 days.  If that is the case, you might be eligible for a restricted permit that could enable you to travel to/from work or school, provided this is your first administrative license suspension.

The Habersham County DUI Lawyers in our office possess practical knowledge regarding ALS hearings and can appear as your representative at the hearing, which means that you do not have to appear.  We do not want you to miss work, school, or your other responsibilities.  Our job is to help make sure your case goes as smoothly as possible.

The officer that arrested you will attend this hearing, and he/she must testify just like they would in a trial regarding the circumstances surrounding your arrest. Every single arrest is different, and therefore, every ALS hearing is different. A seasoned attorney will explore potential defenses to keep your license from suspension. The Habersham County DUI Attorneys in our office are experts in handling ALS hearings.

One significant benefit of an ALS hearing is that the officer's testimony is recorded. As a result, if the officer testifies to something at the ALS hearing and later says something different in court, this can be used to impeach the officer, or call his or her credibility into question.  That can be extremely beneficial at trial, and an experienced DUI Attorney in Habersham County will know exactly how to examine this testimony for inconsistencies.

A DUI Lawyer in Habersham County will show up as your representative in court to guard your rights and be sure your case is handled fairly.


Your first court appearance will likely be an initial hearing or arraignment. In the event our office represents you, an attorney will file documents with the court letting them know that you have legal representation and that you are pleading “not guilty” for the time being. You will most likely be excused from appearing at arraignment.

After one of our Habersham County DUI lawyers file an “Entry of Appearance,” letting the Court know that you are represented by that attorney, we will start working on your and search for feasible defenses. We will get copies of law enforcement videos and reports, any recorded statements that were used throughout the DUI investigation, and the official transcript of the ALS hearing.

As we set out to help you with your case, we start to develop a better idea of just what evidence the State has against you. We will go through every detail of your case with you and be sure you understand what is going on and what to expect next.  All of our clients are important and we try to speak with them and communicate with them often, so they know what to expect with the court process. We want our clients' insight along with viewpoints about their case and defense. We cannot be successful in defending your case without you!

Your court case will move through numerous stages from arraignment, pretrial, and most importantly, trial. We will be in contact with you often, whether in person or by telephone and you will be encouraged to call anytime to express concerns and ask questions about the details of your case.

We realize that coping with the process of a DUI is difficult and stress-filled. Which attorney should you choose?

The Law Office of Richard Lawson offers a no-cost consultation to go over the facts of your case to help you choose. Our website is full of information, and there is also a Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) section that will answer many of your questions and get rid of some concerns. We are ready, morning or even night, twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week to answer your call. We know that it is not always possible to have an appointment with an attorney during regular business hours, mainly because you have a job and other responsibilities that need your time and attention.  That is why we can set up conference calls if necessary or schedule a meeting at a time that's more convenient for you.  That way you can discuss your case whenever it is most convenient for you.  We know your time is precious, and we want to help make your experience as easy as it can be.


The Law Office of Richard Lawson defends those charged with DUI and DUI-related offenses. Do not seek the services of a legal professional who is not current with Georgia's many DUI legal guidelines. If your attorney does not keep up-to-date of the many modifications and changes that will take place with DUI law, your freedom may be at stake! DUI law is always evolving, and a “general practitioner” simply cannot keep up with these changes.  You would not want a family doctor doing your brain surgery, and you do not want a general practitioner handling your DUI.

Richard Lawson is a respected DUI defense expert and has taught workshops all through Georgia.  He has educated various other legal professionals about the best way to protect clients' rights in DUI cases. Seek the services of a lawyer who has helped prepare many other legal experts on how to achieve the best outcome in DUI defense. Richard is the top DUI Attorney in Habersham County and has over 25 years of experience defending persons charged with DUI and DUI-related offenses.


Like most counties in Georgia, there are various courts within the county.  If you have been arrested and charged with DUI within one of the municipalities in Habersham County – Clarkesville, Alto, Cornelia, Demorest, Baldwin, or Tallulah Falls –  your DUI case will begin in the Municipal Court of that city.

Your first court date in the Municipal Court will be your arraignment date.  If you are represented by an attorney, your Habersham County DUI Lawyer will most likely appear on your behalf at arraignment, and you will not be required to appear in court.

If you are not represented by one of our Habersham County DUI Attorneys, you have several options at arraignment.  You may:

  • Request a new court date to hire an attorney;
  • Apply for a public defender;
  • Enter a plea of “not guilty.”  That will result in your case being continued to a new date, which will be your trial date;
  • Request that your case be “bound over,” or sent to Habersham County State Court for trial;
  • Enter a guilty plea.  However, it is not advisable to enter a guilty plea to DUI without consulting an attorney.  A conviction can have long-lasting effects on both your criminal history and your driver's license;
  • An attorney is in a much better position to negotiate a more favorable plea bargain than a pro se, or unrepresented, defendant.

In general, your case may be resolved in a Municipal Court in one of several ways.  First, you may plead guilty to either DUI or to a lesser offense.  A sentence will be imposed by the Municipal Court Judge, and your case will be closed.  Second, you may have a bench trial – a trial in which the judge alone decides whether you are guilty or innocent.  If you wish to have a trial by jury, you may request this in Municipal Court, and your case will be “bound over,” or transferred, from Municipal Court to State Court.

In any event, your Habersham County DUI Attorney will guide you through this process. He or she will examine the evidence in your case and determine the best possible defenses.  These defenses will be presented to the prosecutor and used to negotiate the best possible outcome.  In some cases, this can result in a reduction of the charges or dismissal of the case.  In all cases, even if a reduction or dismissal is not possible, your Habersham County DUI Lawyer will seek to minimize the damage by reducing jail time, fines, or community service.

If you were arrested in the City of Clarkesville, Georgia, your case would begin in the Clarkesville Municipal Court. To request more information about your case, call the clerk of the Clarkesville Municipal Court at (706) 754-5390.  The Chief Clerk is Elaine Waller. The Court is located at 210 E. Water Street Clarkesville, GA 30523.

Map to Clarksville Georgia Municipal Court

The Alto Municipal Court can be contacted at (706) 778-8035.  The Honorable Robert Sneed presides over the Court and the clerk of Court is Shannon Evans. The Court is located at 4086 Gainesville Hwy Alto, GA  30510.

Map to Alto Georgia Municipal Court

The Cornelia Municipal Court Judge is Wink Verdery, and the Court Clerk is Rachel Newkirk.  The contact number is (706) 778-8585. The Court is located at 181 Larkin Street Cornelia, GA 30531.

Map to Cornelia Georgia Municipal Court 

The Demorest Municipal Court Clerk is Cecelia Collins and can be reached at (706) 778-4202. The Court is located at 125 Ivy Street Demorest, GA  30535

Map to Demorest Georgia Municipal Court

The Baldwin Municipal Court Clerk is Susan Bryson and can be reached at (706) 778-6341. The Court is located at 155 Willingham Avenue, Baldwin, GA 30511

Map to Baldwin Georgia Municipal Court

The Tallulah Falls Municipal Court Clerk is Marcia McKean.   Her contact number is (706) 754-6040.  The Court is located at 255 Main Street, Tallulah Falls, GA 30573

Map to Tallulah Falls Municipal Court

Habersham County State Court

If you were arrested for misdemeanor DUI in the unincorporated areas of Habersham County, your case would be heard in the Habersham County State Court. The Solicitor General prosecutes all of the misdemeanor crimes in Habersham County. The Solicitor General (Prosecutor) for Habersham County is William R. Oliver. His office is located in the Habersham County Courthouse. The number to reach his office is (706) 754-0704.

The Chief Judge of Habersham County State Court is M. Steven Campbell, and his office can be reached at (706) 778-2134.  The Clerk of the Habersham County State Court is David C. Wall, and his office can be reached at (706) 839-0300.  If you have questions regarding filing documents, or you would like to find out the status of your case, contact Jeanette Oliver at the clerk's office.  The address of Habersham County State Court is 295 Llewellyn Street, Clarkesville, Georgia 30523. If you have been charged with felony DUI, your case will be handled in the Superior Court of Habersham County.  The Chief Judge is Chan Caudell, and his secretary is Linda Hall.

Map to Habersham County State Court


This site is intended to supply up-to-date DUI facts night and day and is updated on a daily basis. We likewise have daily Georgia DUI information on our Georgia DUI Information Blog. The Law Office of Richard Lawson is a statewide DUI law practice. You can call us anytime, nights, weekends, even holidays.


Call the Law Office of Richard Lawson now for skilled, professional legal representation.  We are ready to take your call to discuss your case 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.  Don't trust your freedom to an inexperienced attorney; hire a DUI specialist with over 25 years of experience.  Contact our Habersham County DUI Attorneys as soon as possible.  Time is not on your side, so call now.  A Habersham County DUI Lawyer is ready to speak to you.

Our Attorneys



    Richard was not the first lawyer I spoke with after my DUI charge, but he was the last when searching for representation. This was my very first time encountering any sort of legal dispute so I had no idea what I was doing and I was very scared. Richard was very friendly, down to earth and consol... Read On

  • Miracle Worker!

    Not only did Richard Lawson and his very capable associate get my DUI reduced to reckless driving with parole, but he did something that I didn't think was possible. I was stopped for a moving violation recently. The police arrested me because they showed my driver's license had been suspended. H... Read On

  • Ideal attorney for anyone

    Mr. Lawson is outstanding. He was professional, attentive to any requests, and got the outcome I wanted but thought was unachievable. I had been arrested for a DUI. The case was very difficult, intricate, and was seemingly without hope, but Mr. Lawson was able to get the charges drastically reduc... Read On

Recent Case Results

  • This case was in Helen Municipal Court.  The client was charged with a DUI and four counts of DUI Child Endangerment.  In Georgia, for every child under the age of 14 in a vehicle it is considered a separate DUI offense.  The client would have been declared an habitual violator from one arrest an... Read On

  • Client was charged with a suspended license because he did not reinstate his privilege to drive after the expiration of his restricted license.  Per my advice, the client properly reinstated his license the day after he was charged.  Case Dismissed in Cobb County State Court.  Read On

  • Client was a resident of New York who was arrested while he was visiting Georgia for pleasure. He was charged with DUI, Reckless Driving, and Speeding 37 MPH over the speed limit. We were able to get the client an unbelievable outcome in Hampton, Georgia. His DUI dismissed, his speeding ticket wa... Read On

Habersham County DUI Resources

Habersham County Sheriff's Office

Habersham County Wikipedia

Habersham County State Court Clerk

Georgia State Patrol Gainesville Georgia Post 6

Habersham County State Court Judge 

Have You Been Arrested for DUI in Habersham County? 

Choosing the Best DUI Lawyer

When you are arrested for DUI in Georgia, finding the right Lawyer is Job #1. At the Law Offices of Richard S. Lawson we will investigate your case and find the best possible legal defense to your DUI in Georgia. You are in good hands with Richard Lawson and his associates. We will work tirelessly to help you while compassionately holding your hand throughout the entire DUI Defense Process.

Georgia DUI Defense Attorneys

At the Law Office of Richard S. Lawson, we have offices conveniently located throughout metro Atlanta and throughout Georgia. If we do not have a convenient office, we will come to you. We practice throughout Metro Atlanta and North Georgia. If your case is in an area we do not serve, we will find you an attorney in your area free of charge. Our office is part of a State-wide network of Georgia DUI Lawyers. Contact us 24/7 for immediate legal help. Our attorneys are standing by. Your DUI Case will not defend itself. Your Best Georgia DUI Defense Begins Here!