Helen DUI Lawyer - Helen DUI Attorney
In Helen, police make more DUI arrests per square mile than in any place in Georgia. During Oktoberfest, the Helen Police patrol and Georgia State patrol make dozens of DUI arrests every week. When visiting Helen, it is best to stay in a local hotel and walk to the restaurants and attractions. But in the event you are charged with DUI, we are here to help 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
For over 25 years Richard Lawson has been handling cases in Helen and White County. Richard Lawson started his career in 1995 as a DUI Prosecutor in White County prosecuting White County and Helen cases. Since that time, he has represented people charged in Helen and throughout North Georgia. He is the top-rated Helen DUI Lawyer and his reviews can be found on AVVO.
30 Day Warning!
You only have thirty days to file an appeal of your automatic license suspension. Your Helen DUI Attorney will request a hearing with the Georgia Department of Driver's Services or you can choose to install an ignition interlock device on your vehicle. No decision should be made without first consulting with a Helen DUI Lawyer. The State charges $150 to file the appeal, and if the license suspension is not appealed, you are facing up to a 12-month hard suspension. A hard suspension means there will be no permit to drive. This does not have to happen. Call now to protect your driving privilege.
Helen DUI Process:
Helen Municipal Court is held every month on a Wednesday at 4:00 p.m. The City Judge is Robert Sneed, the clerk of court is Marilyn Chastain, and the prosecutor is Solicitor Tricia Hise. The Solicitor represents the City of Helen and the arresting officer against you. She will negotiate with your lawyer and conduct the trial if a negotiated settlement is not reached.
In Helen, your attorney can negotiate a plea bargain or have bench trial with Judge Sneed. If you want a jury trial, then your case will be transferred to the Superior Court of White County.
It is important to first investigate your case before making any decision to have a trial or seek a negotiated settlement of the case (commonly referred to as a plea bargain). Our office reviews all cases for potential legal and factual defenses.
Map to Helen Municipal Court
How is DUI in Helen Handled Differently than Other Jurisdictions?
It is very important to have an attorney that knows the local rules and customs. For over 20 years, we have handled cases in Helen GA. The single most important decision is whether to handle the case in the city court or send the case to superior court for a trial. Knowing the advantages of both courts gives our clients the upper hand when making that decision. In city court, there are many different options and alternative punishments unavailable in a superior court.
This is particularly true in minor in possession cases, possession of marijuana, hit and run, leaving the scene of an accident, speeding, and other traffic tickets. Alternative punishments are also possible in DUI cases but less likely than in minor offenses. DUI is politically sensitive and there needs to be a real reason to receive a reduction to a lesser offense. That is why we investigate all of our cases for real defenses. They will not reduce your case just because you are a nice person who has never been in legal trouble.
In Superior Court, the process is more formalized with an arraignment, motions, hearings, and ultimately a jury trial. That is why you need an experienced Helen DUI Attorney to determine the best course of action because most cases do not need a trial in order to get a good outcome.
In addition to plea bargains and trials, our Helen DUI lawyers will help you with restoring your privilege to drive in Georgia and your driver's license. We work with representatives of the Department of Driver Services every day in order to restore and protect your driver's license. We understand that driving is essential to your daily existence and we will help you every step in the process until your license is fully restored. If you were visiting Helen from another state, we will refer you to a qualified lawyer in your home state to advise you about your driver's license. A Georgia lawyer should never give licensing advice to an out-of-state resident because the laws in your home state are very different than the laws in Georgia.
DUI Penalties in Georgia
DUI Defenses in Georgia
There are many potential defenses to your DUI case and our office will challenge the reason you were pulled over or the roadblock in your case. We can challenge the probable cause for the arrest, field sobriety tests, the State's chemical test, as well as well as the alleged refusal to submit to a test. If illegal substances are found in the car, we can challenge the legality of any search of your vehicle. The police must have either permission or probable cause to search your vehicle.
If there was a breath test, we can hire expert witnesses to see if there was a problem with the breath-testing machine used in your case. We will also investigate whether the officer administered the field sobriety tests correctly. Everyone in the office is certified in Standardized Field Sobriety Testing, and no one is automatically guilty of a DUI just because there were arrested.
Unless it was a roadside checkpoint, there is always an underlying offense that caused the DUI arrest. These offenses can include, but not be limited to, speeding, failure to maintain lane, following too closely, and reckless driving. We will help resolve your entire case, including the related offenses.
Act Now to Protect your Rights
If you have been charged with DUI in Helen Georgia, act now to protect your driver's license, your criminal record, and your freedom. We are here 24/7, including nights, weekends, and holidays, because we know how much this means to you. Call now for the best Helen DUI defense.
Helen DUI Resources
City of Helen Official Website
Georgia Municipal Court Judges Association