Do I really need an attorney for a DUI Charge? 11 Answers as of May 08, 2013

Not that I do not take the charge seriously, I just am wondering if I can get by with a public defender.

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Law Office of Darin Kanfer | Darin J. Kanfer
If you are comfortable with the public defender, you should go with him/her. However, if you want to contest the charge and have a trial, you may get better representation from your own attorney since they will only be representing you and not several others in the court.
Answer Applies to: Michigan
Replied: 5/8/2013
Hudson Bair | Hudson Bair
If you qualify for a public defender you are getting an attorney. The quality of representation will vary from county to county, attorney to attorney and is impacted significantly by the case load of your attorney. If you can hire a private attorney they usually have more time to focus on your case and build a defense, they have time to meet with you and discuss your case in advance, they can take your calls they can defend you at the DMV and most importantly, if you hire a DUI attorney you get a lawyer with specialized training and experience who can get you the best possible outcome.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 5/7/2013
Anderson Law Office
Anderson Law Office | Scott L. Anderson
Whenever you use the words "get by" you should proceed with caution. DUI's are serious offenses and affect your driver's license and criminal record not to mention the potential for jail time, fines, alcohol monitoring, etc. It is wise to retain an experienced DUI attorney.
Answer Applies to: Minnesota
Replied: 5/7/2013
Universal Law Group, Inc. | Francis John Cowhig
The decision as to retain a private attorney or be represented by a public defender is a personal one, which you must make. Like everything else in life there are good/bad private attorneys and good/bad public defenders. The main differences are: 1. you are able to choose your private attorney and fire him if you do not think he is doing a good job defending you 2. with a public defender you have no input into who you get and it is usually extremely difficult to have your public defender replaced with another public defender, if you are not comfortable with him/her 3. due to the case load of most, if not all, public defenders, your appointed attorney may not have the time to explain everything to you that you need to know or answer all your questions 4. a private attorney can give you the "personal" touch you may want and should have the time to explain everything to you and answer all of your questions. There are pros and cons to either choice, but these are the main differences. Good luck.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 5/7/2013
Lawrence Lewis
Lawrence Lewis | Lawrence Lewis, PC
You get what you pay for.
Answer Applies to: Georgia
Replied: 5/7/2013
    Henry Lebensbaum | Henry Lebensbaum
    Really.
    Answer Applies to: Massachusetts
    Replied: 5/7/2013
    Kram & Wooster, P.S. | Richard H. Wooster
    Nah, throw on your favorite tavern jacket and head on down to Court.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 5/7/2013
    Law Office of Jeff Yeh
    Law Office of Jeff Yeh | Jeff Yeh
    Unlikely. PD's can't and won't even touch your DMV matter, which is just as important. Also, guess what kinds of PD's handle misdemeanors? The rookies. Do yourself a favor and hire a DUI specialist.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 5/7/2013
    Johnson & Johnson Law Firm, PLLC | Richard Johnson
    You get what you pay for.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 5/7/2013
    Conway Law Pllc.
    Conway Law Pllc. | B. L. Conway
    The punishment upon conviction for DUI can be severe. It includes up to a year in jail, a $2500 fine, license suspension and ignition interlock if you are granted a restricted license. So, You go from there but you should get a Great Lawyer.
    Answer Applies to: Virginia
    Replied: 5/7/2013
    Musilli Brennan Associates PLLC
    Musilli Brennan Associates PLLC | John F Brennan
    Generally, you'll get what you pay for. Depending on your circumstances, I would at least speak with a private attorney to determine whether or not there is anything we can be done in your situation. Also be aware that in most jurisdictions assigned counsel billed the county and eventually the county makes you pay the bill in any case when you are able.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 5/7/2013
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