Determining the Cost of Hiring a DUI Lawyer
Being charged with a DUI is a serious offense that can have drastic consequences on your future. Having a DUI on your record can hurt your chances of getting a certain type of job or promotion as well as affect your ability to drive. It is important to hire a lawyer to help with your case as soon as possible so they can begin to interview witnesses if necessary and gather other evidence related to your case. The cost of hiring a DUI lawyer varies and can be very expensive.
Factors that Affect the Cost of Your Case
There are several factors that can determine how much your attorney will charge to defend your case. These factors can include but are not limited to:
- Whether the case in a felony of a misdemeanor
- Whether it is a first, second or multiple offense
- If your lawyer will have to deal with DMV issue
- If your lawyer will need to hire outside services like a private investigator or a forensic alcohol consultant.
- Whether the case will be solved before going to trial or if it will have go to a jury trial.
Most DUI lawyers will charge a retainer fee for services prior to going to trial. This retainer can range from $1,500 to $10,000 depending on the lawyer’s experience, reputation and the level of demand for their services in the area. If it is determined that the case needs to go to trial, then most lawyers will charge a fee per day. These costs can start at $2,000 and go up depending on which lawyer you decide to work with. If expert witnesses are needed in court, they will also charge a fee for their services. A regular DUI case usually takes about three days in court.
Choosing the Right Attorney
Experience matters most when you are being changed with a DUI. The consequences for this offense vary from state to state but having an experienced lawyer to represent you can help lessen the severity of your sentence. Your lawyer should be knowledgeable about the rules and procedures that apply to the location where you received your DUI. Laws can vary from county to county and having a lawyer who is well versed in handling cases in your specific area is important. Your lawyer will be able to help you:
- Determine if you should plead guilty or take your case to a jury trial.
- Understand the process and legal consequences you will face.
- Explain and organize the details of a plea bargain if necessary.
- Handle the DMV administrative proceedings concerning license suspicion or revocation issues.
- Gather evidence, witnesses, expert counsel and other evidence necessary to winning your case.
In some states documentation of your DUI arrest will be given to several different agencies to keep on record. Hiring a lawyer can get this documentation permanently removed from public record so it will not have any negative affect on your future endeavors. It is important to contact a lawyer as quickly as possible if you are facing a DUI. Most law firms offer a free consultation to get an idea of what your case will involve. Be sure to clearly understand your attorney’s fee structure and any payment arrangements that may be possible. Having access to experienced and qualified legal representation will make a big difference in the outcome of your case.
The cost of hiring a lawyer to represent you with your DUI case can vary dramatically depending on the attorney’s experience level, his or her reputation and what the demand is for their services as well as how complex your specific case is. Hiring a lawyer who is experienced handling cases in your area and who specializes in DUI cases will help ensure a positive outcome for your specific situation. Be sure to contact a lawyer as quickly as possible and set up a free consultation to discuss the details for your case to get an accurate idea of the total cost.
Written by Phil Balbo, staff writer at a law firm. For more information about these laws or a free consultation following an arrest, please contact an Alexandria DUI Lawyer. A DUI Lawyer may be able to help you if you have been charged with a DUI.