Although someone is injured in a drunk driving crash every two minutes, these all-too common events need to be taken very seriously. If you are arrested for a DUI and do not have adequate legal representation to protect your rights, your entire future could hang in the balance. That's why it's so important to speak with a DUI attorney immediately following this kind of incident. When you finally find an attorney and schedule an appointment to meet with them regarding your case, you may feel intimidated and unsure about the proper procedures to follow. We hope this guide will ease some of your concerns and help you prepare for your first meeting with your attorney.
What To Expect In This Initial Meeting
Once you find an attorney you feel might be a good fit, you'll typically schedule a consultation with them. This first meeting services a couple of different purposes: for the attorney to understand the charges against you and the circumstances of the incident itself, and for you to ascertain whether or not this lawyer possesses the experience, reputation, and overall manner to represent you in a court of law.
Usually, this first meeting will start with questions from the attorney pertaining to the event, including allegations, evidence, and other details of the case against you. While you may be inclined to make yourself look as innocent as possible, it's imperative that you be as honest as possible instead. Whether or not you choose this specific lawyer to represent you, they are bound by confidentiality laws; therefore, they cannot disclose anything you tell them. By being totally upfront with this attorney, you'll provide them with the information they need to defend you to the best of their ability.
After this lawyer has finished with their questions, it will be your turn to ask some of your own. Come prepared with questions regarding their previous experience with defending clients facing similar charges, what sort of strategy they feel will work best, and what their fees will be. If you have special requests (like the need for a bilingual attorney or specific appointment days and times), you should ask this lawyer about these requests during this time.
Many people choose to meet with a few different lawyers to compare their approaches, levels of expertise, and costs. After this first meeting is over, you can make a determination as to whether you feel confident in this attorney's style and experience. If you are still unsure after this first meeting, you may want to consider having consultations with one or two other well-regarded attorneys before making a decision.
What To Bring When Meeting With Your DUI Lawyer
You'll need to be mentally prepared when you find an attorney and schedule your meeting with them, but you should be physically prepared as well. You'll need to bring certain documents with you to the meeting, including any court paperwork you have (specifically, documents that go into detail about the charges against you and your next scheduled court appearance), bail papers, police reports, and any other papers you have in your possession. You should make copies of all these documents and bring the copies with you for your lawyer to see.
It will be beneficial to both you and your attorney to make a list of every person connected to your case (including victims, other defendants, and witnesses). Your lawyer will study this list and ensure that no one within the firm, including your lawyer, has represented anyone involved in your case in the past or has a prior relationship with them of any kind. This could be seen as a conflict of interest, so it's best to have this information before moving forward. It's also a good idea for you to write down any questions you may have to reference during the meeting. You should bring a writing utensil and notebook to write down important information during the meeting, too.
After you are arrested and charged with any type of crime, you'll need to find an attorney to represent you. If you need to find an attorney with DUI experience, contact our law offices today to set up a consultation.