In most states, a driving under the influence (DUI) charge is a very serious criminal one, because impaired driving places so many people’s lives at risk. Depending on various factors like your criminal record; your blood alcohol concentration (BAC); or whether or not anyone was severely injured or killed as a result, you may be faced with large fines and/or a significant jail sentence. In addition, you most likely will end up losing your driving privileges for a certain amount of time and might be required to have an ignition interlock device installed following a suspension period.
So should you hire a dui accident attorney vancouver wa for your DUI? Often it is in your best interest to do so, particularly if there are any aggravating factors involved. However, there are other times when it might not make a big difference to your case’s final outcome to hire an attorney.
When Hiring A DUI Attorney Might Not Be Necesssary
If this is your first offense and there weren’t any injuries, and there is a high possibility you will be convicted of a DUI then you probably don’t need assistance from an attorney. In those situations, there is a fairly high chance that you will plead either no contest or guilty, and be subject to standard administrative penalties and sentences.
However, even if this describes your case, there could be certain factors involved that could necessitate you needing legal assistance. So if you are in doubt about your case, you should seek out a free initial consultation with a DUI attorney.
Hiring An Attorney To Help Reduce Your Sentence Or For A Plea Bargain
If the prosecution does not have a clear cut case, then there could be a chance for you to get a plea bargain. Since trials take up lots of room on the docket and are expensive, the state might accept a plea bargain for a lesser charge instead of having to go through a trial that they might lose. An experienced DUI attorney can negotiate a plea bargain with the prosecutor for you. You might be able to plea bargain to reckless driving as a lesser charge that carries a lighter sentence and no jail time compared to a DUI. Also your driver’s license won’t be suspended.
In certain cases, a state might be willing to bargain a DUI sentence down in exchange for our guilty plea. For example, if you are faced with a second or third DUI charge, the prosecution might reduce the sentence instead of having to go to trial, in exchange for getting a guilty plea. An experienced DUI attorney is needed to successfully negotiate a plea bargain or reduced sentence.