How can I find an experienced DUI attorney? 48 Answers as of July 08, 2013

I was pulled over last night and charged with a DUI for blowing .09 but I passed the field test. I am in medical school and have a lot to loose. How can I find a great attorney?

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Theodore W. Robinson, P.C.
Theodore W. Robinson, P.C. | Theodore W. Robinson
You do have a lotto lose. I suggest you go to Avvo.com and look at all the profiles of attorneys in your physical area and hire the onewho has the highest score and the best references and with whom you can feel some rapport and trust. Good luck.
Answer Applies to: New York
Replied: 7/19/2011
Law Office of Cotter C. Conway
Law Office of Cotter C. Conway | Cotter C. Conway
The only way to find an experienced DUI attorney is to consult with a few attorneys that practice criminal law/DUI law. Most attorneys offer a free consultation. You should then choose the attorney with whom you feel the most comfortable.
Answer Applies to: Nevada
Replied: 7/18/2011
Gregory Casale Attorney at Law
Gregory Casale Attorney at Law | Gregory Casale
You have found one! I have practiced Criminal Defense and DUIs for over 13 years. With a.09 breath test and passing the field sobriety tests, you have a very favorable case.
Answer Applies to: Massachusetts
Replied: 7/18/2011
Michael Breczinski
Michael Breczinski | Michael Breczinski
Do they have a lot of experience (I have over 29 years worth)? Do they know what they are talking about? Are they realistic of the options? Or do they promise you the moon? These are the type of things to think about. Do you have other people who have gotten in trouble? Ask them.
Answer Applies to: Michigan
Replied: 7/18/2011
Goolsby Law Office
Goolsby Law Office | Richard Goolsby
We recommend that you talk with family and friends about recommendations. Also, since I am a former state and federal prosecutor, I believe that former prosecutors who are now criminal defense attorneys, make the best defense attorneys! Finally, I recommend that you actually meet with the prospective attorney and ask good questions about their experience, e.g. how many trials have they had, before you make up your mind about whom to hire. Good luck!
Answer Applies to: Georgia
Replied: 7/16/2011
    Anderson & Carnahan
    Anderson & Carnahan | Stephen Anderson
    You should interview attorneys and ask about their experience and qualifications in the county where the offense occurred,
    Answer Applies to: Colorado
    Replied: 7/15/2011
    Law Office of Thomas A. Medford, Jr., PC
    Law Office of Thomas A. Medford, Jr., PC | Thomas A. Medford, Jr.
    Two good starting points would be the attorney referral service of the DC Bar and speaking with similarly situated people concerning how satisfied are they with their attorneys.
    Answer Applies to: District of Columbia
    Replied: 7/15/2011
    Law Office of Andrew Subin
    Law Office of Andrew Subin | Andrew Subin
    Ask how many DUI cases they have handled. Try to find someone you trust.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 7/15/2011
    Bloom Legal, LLC
    Bloom Legal, LLC | Seth J. Bloom
    You should conduct some research on the internet for attorneys in your local area. See if you can find reviews from former clients. Also seek out personal referrals from friends, family etc. Look for attorneys who establish themselves as experts in their field.
    Answer Applies to: Louisiana
    Replied: 7/15/2011
    Law Office of Richard Williams
    Law Office of Richard Williams | Richard Williams
    There are many good DUI attorneys. Martindale-Hubble is a law directory available at almost every county law library that has attorneys listed by name, speciality and rating.The location where you received the DUI offense may be a factor to consider when choosing an attorney you may want to consider choosing a local attorney.
    Answer Applies to: Alabama
    Replied: 7/15/2011
    Gonzalez Law Associates P.C.
    Gonzalez Law Associates P.C. | Carlos Gonzalez
    We handle many DUI cases per year and regularly practice in All of the courts in and around NYC.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 7/4/2013
    Law Office of Peter F. Goldscheider
    Law Office of Peter F. Goldscheider | Peter Goldscheider
    The best way to find an experience criminal defense attorney is by referral from a friend or another lawyer who has experience with that attorney. Otherwise look for a California state bar certified criminal law specialist. If you cannot locate one you like ask the local bar association lawyer referral service for a recommendation. Two things to avoid: those attorney who send you letters after having gotten your name after your arrest, and so-called DUI specialists who are nothing more than high volume mills that will take your money at bargain rates and do nothing on your case but have you plead guilty right away.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 7/15/2011
    Harden Law Offices
    Harden Law Offices | Leonard D. Harden
    You should ask around friends and family, your locality to find out who the best DWI lawyer in the area is. You can also call a family lawyer/ real estate lawyer/ personal injury lawyer and get their opinion. Interview the lawyers who appear in both lists- ask when last DWI trial was, did they win, how much of their practice is DWI, have they taken the NHTSA FST course, instructor course, taught other defense lawyers at CLE, published any books or articles, then just listen to the lawyer do they have a plan on how to win. It is hard to find a great attorney, but in my opinion the above would narrow the field down. In my opinion there are probably about a handful of DWI lawyers in the state that are truly great.
    Answer Applies to: New Hampshire
    Replied: 7/15/2011
    Pontrello Law
    Pontrello Law | William Pontrello
    Ask friends, check websites, check Martindale-Hubble, check avvo.com.
    Answer Applies to: Florida
    Replied: 7/15/2011
    Craig W. Elhart, P.C.
    Craig W. Elhart, P.C. | Craig Elhart
    In looking for a good defense attorney, asking friends and family for recommendations is a good place to start. Also, how much experience does the attorney have in criminal defense. Remember you are hiring the attorney to work for you so you can meet with the attorney and ask questions.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 7/15/2011
    Law Offices of Carl Spector
    Law Offices of Carl Spector | Carl Spector
    There are many ways to find an experienced criminal defense attorney. You can inquire among your trusted friends and co-workers for a referral if you feel comfortable enough disclosing your problem. You can ask for a referral from the County Bar Association. Or you can look for a local attorney on AVVO and make an appointment and sit down and ask the attorney some questions and judge for yourself who you can trust. Good Luck.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 7/15/2011
    Law Offices of John Carney
    Law Offices of John Carney | John Carney
    You should Google DWI lawyers in the city you were arrested in. Look for an attorney with more than 20 years of experience, who is a sole practitioner or in a small firm and who specializes in criminal law.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 7/15/2011
    Michael R. Nack, Attorney at Law
    Michael R. Nack, Attorney at Law | Michael R. Nack
    You have already taken a good first step by doing some online research. By now you have probably received a lot of advertisements from attorneys who are soliciting your business. These attorneys pay a service to provide them with a list each morning of all of the people arrested the previous day. The advertisements might be slick and might offer very low prices, but these attorneys are in business looking to make a profit, and I warn people not to fall for their advertising gimmicks. I have handled hundreds of DWI cases in the thirty-three years I have been practicing law, and you can look me up through Google or lawguru.com.
    Answer Applies to: Missouri
    Replied: 7/15/2011
    LT Pepper Law
    LT Pepper Law | Luke T. Pepper
    Depending on where you live, we can recommend attorneys that maybe able to help.
    Answer Applies to: Pennsylvania
    Replied: 7/8/2013
    Cynthia Henley, Lawyer
    Cynthia Henley, Lawyer | Cynthia Henley
    First let me tell you that while you think you passed the field sobriety tests, the officer(s) will have a very different opinion (or they wouldn't have taken you in to take the BT in the first place.) But, that is in every case and it will be for a jury to decide. That you failed the breath test does not automatically mean that you will be convicted. The test was not administered at the time you were driving and the State will have to show that you were intoxictated (and they will have to tie the .09 to the level you were at the time of driving - which might be very different.) I do not know what area you are living or charged in. I can tell you that if you know any criminal defense lawyer who you trust, you can ask them. I handle DWI cases and used to try them ALL the time back in the day. (I've been practicing 23 years.) But now, I do not handle them if they need a trial. I'm in Houston where there are several absolutely GREAT DWI attorneys to whom I refer cases needing a trial. Generally you can do online searches and go to websites but the reality is that so many lawyer websites list all offenses (mine included) when the lawyer might not necessarily be "the best" in a particular area. Talk to lawyers and ask what percentage of their practice is devoted to DWI. In Houston, those that I consider to be the great ones devote probably 75% or higher to DWI. You need something similar.
    Answer Applies to: Texas
    Replied: 7/15/2011
    Law Offices of Christopher Jackson
    Law Offices of Christopher Jackson | Christopher L. Jackson
    What county? You need to ask questions to any lawyers you interview Ask about trial success, how often they handle DUI cases, etc
    Answer Applies to: Kentucky
    Replied: 7/15/2011
    Collins Law Firm, P.A.
    Collins Law Firm, P.A. | John C. Collins
    Talk to as many as you can. Don't just go with the first one that sounds good. Many can give talking points but it is only after talking with several that you can really determine which ones know what they are talking about. Ask them how the machine works and about possible defenses. Ask what kind of training they have had relating to field tests and bac machines. Ask about the blood/breath partition ratio and how that could impact your case (you should be able to do some independent research to verify their answers). Ask if they have ever used an expert witness in a dwi trial. Ask what they charge. Most dwi specific attorneys are very expensive because they know how much work must be done to do the case right. Good luck. Many .09 cases can be won, but all cannot. Stay away from those that make promises and those that say they can't be beat. Make sure they will spend the time talking with you about your case, not just about the cases they have had in the past. Ask if you cam have their cell phone number in case you have follow up questions.
    Answer Applies to: Arkansas
    Replied: 7/15/2011
    Law Offices of George Woodworth & Associates
    Law Offices of George Woodworth & Associates | George Woodworth
    Good or even great DUI Attorneys are those criminal defense attorneys with a great amount of experience in DUI matters, with the will, drive, and determination to solve their client's DUI problems quickly and efficiently. Such Attorneys can be found online, yellow pages, through local bar Assn. referrals, etc. But whatever method is used, be sure to get information on the Attorney's training, background & experience. Most established Attorneys have a website with all of this information, and much more, even with helpful contact information. Then you can talk with them and usually get a free consultation too. S
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 7/15/2011
    Leyba Defense, PLLC
    Leyba Defense, PLLC | Matthew Leyba
    There are many factors you should consider in deciding how to hire for a DUI charge. Obviously experience is probably the most important, but success rate, and client reviews are right up there. Here is a linkto my website where I created the 5 most important questions to ask when interviewing a DUI Attorney. These questions are by no means exhaustive, but they should help you weed out the bad DUI Attorneys for the good ones. Best of luck.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 7/15/2011
    Nelson & Lawless
    Nelson & Lawless | Terry Nelson
    There are numerous referral sources, generally paid for by the attorneys on them. Ask friends who have used one. Call the local Lawyer Referral Service. Research on the internet. Call and consult with me. You're looking for someone telling you the truth and who you feel comfortable with. If you passed the FST, they wouldnt have arrested you. Your opinion doesnt count, and police can lie to you to keep you docile. You will be surprised when you read the police report about your obviously intoxicated condition. When arrested or charged with any crime, the proper questions are, can any evidence obtained in a test, search or confession be used against you, and can you be convicted, and what can you do? Raise all possible defenses with whatever admissible and credible witnesses, evidence and facts are available for legal arguments, for evidence suppression or other motions, or at trial. While this isn't a 'capital case', you certainly face potential jail and fines, so handle it right. You can hire an attorney, unless you know how to effectively represent yourself in court against a professional prosecutor intending to convict. He will try to get a dismissal, diversion, reduction or other decent outcome through plea bargain, or take it to trial if appropriate.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 7/15/2011
    Law Office of Thomas J. Ogas
    Law Office of Thomas J. Ogas | Thomas Ogas
    Word of mouth. Find out if anyone you trust has an attorney theyd recommend. Other than that, you have to talk to a few. Advertisements arent good enough, and cost also isnt an indication of quality. In the end, you have to find someone that you trust to do the best job possible, and to keep your interests in mind.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 7/15/2011
    Fitzpatrick, Mariano, & Santos, PC
    Fitzpatrick, Mariano, & Santos, PC | Raymond J. Savoy
    Search for dwi attorneys in your area on the internet. Their website should list their qualifications and experience.
    Answer Applies to: Connecticut
    Replied: 7/15/2011
    Austin Legal Services, PLC
    Austin Legal Services, PLC | Jared Austin
    Ask any of your friends or family to see if they know of anyone. You can also check for referrals with the local and state bar association. Look for any scholarly articles or law review articles or books regarding DUIs in your state. That is usually a good bet as well. Otherwise, try searching on the Internet and talk to several until you are confident with your choice.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 7/15/2011
    Wallin & Klarich: A Law Corporation
    Wallin & Klarich: A Law Corporation | Paul Wallin
    The law firm that you consider retaining needs to have extensive experienced in the exact court where your case is pending. You should also make sure the law firm you hire has a high rating with AVVO.com and with Martindale Hubbell as they are independent rating systems for lawyers. You must get a DMV hearing set within 10 days of your arrest and you should have your lawyer set that up for you.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 7/15/2011
    Law Office of Jared Altman
    Law Office of Jared Altman | Jared Altman
    Yes. You do have a lot to lose! There is no easy answer for you. There are a lot of good DWI attorneys around. If you do not know someone who can give you a personal recommendation, then I would look online for attorneys that specialize in DWI cases. Someone who practices law in the County that you were arrested in might be beneficial, but not absolutely required. You need to interview a few lawyers and judge them for yourself. Then go with your gut. Fees can vary widely, so don't judge on that basis alone.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 7/15/2011
    Law Offices of Phil Hache
    Law Offices of Phil Hache | Phil Hache
    Your best bet is to view the attorney websites, see their case results and testimonials from past clients if they have any. Make sure they focus their practice on DUI and Criminal defense. See if they keep up to date and belong to DUI defense organizations such as the California DUI Lawyers Association, etc. And schedule a time to talk to them about your case in detail and about potential defenses. You have a good start to defending your case with the .09 BAC (blood alcohol content).
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 7/15/2011
    Law Offices of Elliott Zarabi
    Law Offices of Elliott Zarabi | Elliott Zarabi
    Call our office and I can help you out. Depending on what court it is out of, you may be able to reduce it to a wet reckless.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 7/15/2011
    A.L.A. Law Group, LLP
    A.L.A. Law Group, LLP | Lauren M. Mayfield
    You should get consultations with several different criminal defense attorneys. Ask them to explain the process of both the DMV and court to you. You should also do your homework on each attorney before you go into the consultation, google them, check out their website and read any reviews out there. See if their website is informative about DUI proceedings. Ask as many questions you can while in the consultation. Make sure they can explain the difference between a dry reckless, wet reckless and DUI. Be sure to ask their success rate at the DMV at getting set asides and their success rate at court at getting the charges reduced. Also, ask them to explain the sentence for a first time DUI to you, if they can't thats a bad sign. Ask if the retainer includes the DMV hearing, trial, motions, etc. Pick the attorney you feel had the best answers.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 7/15/2011
    Law Offices of Matthew Murillo
    Law Offices of Matthew Murillo | Matthew Murillo
    Depends on you definition of great. Someone who one person considers great, may not be great to another person. It all depends on your point of view and your finances. Do you want to find the most expensive attorney? Do you equate that with brig great? Do you want to find the cheapest? Do you want one who practices in criminal law generally? Do you want an attorney who only handles DUI cases? Do you want to have the attorney you hire, be the same one who represents you in court and at the DMV or an "associate" attorney? Do you want the attorney with 30-40 cases pending at one time, or the one with 70+ cases pending? Who will you speak to about your case, the attorney or other staff? I suggest you interview a few attorneys and go with the one you feel most comfortable with.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 7/15/2011
    Law Office of Phillip Weiser
    Law Office of Phillip Weiser | Phillip L. Weiser
    Referrals are great ways to locate attorneys who have given good service to others. Just ask around, you should get referrals from satisfied clients. You could also search for DUI attorneys in your area and check their references. The best way to identify who you want to represent you is to meet with them and ask questions, you should be able to get a feel for the one who would take your case seriously.
    Answer Applies to: Kansas
    Replied: 7/15/2011
    Shawn R. Dominy, Attorney at Law
    Shawn R. Dominy, Attorney at Law | Shawn Richard Dominy
    That's a good question, and a common one among people hoping to avoid a DUI conviction.
    Answer Applies to: Ohio
    Replied: 7/4/2013
    Castleberry & Elison
    Castleberry & Elison | Peter Castleberry
    There are many excellent DUI lawyers in Oregon. Some lawyers focus exclusively on DUI defense while others represent clients accused of DUI as part of a general criminal defense practice. Client's look for different characteristics in attorneys, and a lawyer that is right for one client might not be right for another. Most criminal defense attorneys will offer free and confidential consultations. I recommend talking to several different lawyers before making a decision. Ask the lawyer about his/her level of experience defending DUI cases. Inquire about what you can expect as far as fees and costs. Some attorneys will quote hourly rates while others will offer to represent you on a "flat fee" basis, meaning that you know we exactly how much you will have to pay in attorney fees up front. Beyond the attorney's level of experience handling DUI charges and financial considerations, it is important that you and your attorney communicate effectively and that you feel comfortable talking about the facts of your case with your attorney. If you and your lawyer have an inherent personality conflict, this can adversely effect the preparation of your defense. Also, many criminal defense attorneys have online profiles on www.avvo.com. You can read reviews by previous clients. Fortunately, if this is a first time DUI, you are probably eligible for the diversion program. The diversion program allows first time DUII offenders the opportunity to get their case dismissed if they successfully complete the program requirements. This means that if you complete diversion, you will not have a DUII conviction on your record.
    Answer Applies to: Oregon
    Replied: 7/15/2011
    Andersen Law PLLC
    Andersen Law PLLC | Craig Andersen
    As a medical student, you should know the importance of objectivity and observation. You didn't watch the FST's nor are you qualified to evaluate them so don't make the mistake of assuming you passed them. Hoof beats almost always mean a horse; not a zebra. That said, you want an attorney who has experience defending accused people and preferably defending accused people who face DUII charges. If you have a scientific background, you may be familiar with Infrared Spectroscopy. Your DUI lawyer had better have that down pat. A top DUI lawyer also knows toxicological principles and has some understanding of scientific method. Beyond that, he or she ought to be a proven negotiator because your situation may merit a plea deal and you will want your attorney to obtain the best deal. Beyond that, I would love to talk to you. I have twenty years of experience as a criminal prosecutor and defense attorney. I have experience as a narcotics prosecutor so I know my chemistry including gas chromatography and infrared spectroscopy. I have been trained by the State Patrol as a prosecutor of DUI cases and I am up-to-date on all of the licensing issues arising from a DUI. I practice primarily in Southwest Washington. If you were arrested in other counties, I will have a good idea of who can give you the best chance of acquittal or at least control the damage to your professional goals. You've worked hard to get to where you are now. Don't waste that effort by hiring an attorney who doesn't appreciate that.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 7/15/2011
    Freeborn Law Offices, P.S.
    Freeborn Law Offices, P.S. | Steve Freeborn
    There are some very good DUI attorneys in this area. One option you have is to contact the Washington State Bar Association and ask for lawyer referral and ask for the names of DUI attorneys in your particular geographical area and then go and interview them. Another option is to go to the court where your case is filed, observe several court hearing and the attorneys. You may find one that you like. You can also ask people you know. Some of the best attorneys are found through word of mouth referrals. Whatever you do, ask questions, but be prepared to hear what you NEED to hear, as opposed to what you WANT to hear
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 7/15/2011
    Law Office of James E. Smith
    Law Office of James E. Smith | James Smith
    Ask DUI lawyers in your area who they would hire if they got a DUI. Once you hear the same name 3 times the that's the lawyer you want.
    Answer Applies to: Nevada
    Replied: 7/15/2011
    Wallin & Klarich
    Wallin & Klarich | Stephen D. Klarich
    You found one - call Wallin & Klarich at 714-730-5300. We have offices throughout southern CA and have been defending people like yourself for over 30 years. Check us out at wklaw.com and see how high we are rated among other attorneys and Judges.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 7/15/2011
    Law Office of Jeff Yeh
    Law Office of Jeff Yeh | Jeff Yeh
    First of all, there is no such thing as passing the FST's, which are designed as a tool to suuport a later conviction, and is quite simply a trick. For example, if you are asked to do 20 things and you do 19 of them correctly, guess what will show up in the police report? That's right, the ONE thing you did wrong. When searching for an attorney, ask 3 things: 1) Will this attorney personally represent you, or simply take your money and pass your case down to someone else? When you call, will you be speaking to one attorney from start to finish, or will you be talking to different attorneys everytime (depending on who went to court that particular time) and paralegals? 2) Does this attorney take whatever walks in the door, or does this attorney specialize in DUI? Remember that DUI is very complicated, and a lot of attorneys aren't even familiar with the DMV portion of the case (which, by the way, requires timely action or you lose your license by default). 3) Will this attorney lure you in on a low initial fee, only to do nothing but plead you guilty? Remember a lot of attorneys do nothing except plead you guilty like sheep, and if you do not plead guilty and they have to return to court, more money will be charged, again and again and again...
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 7/15/2011
    Law Office of Joe Dane
    Law Office of Joe Dane | Joe Dane
    Start with a personal referral if you can get one. Either from somebody who's had a DUI in the past or at least through another attorney if you know one. If you don't have any personal referrals, then the internet is your next step. Look for somebody who focuses on criminal defense. You don't want somebody who handles any type of case that walks through their door - dog bite one day, divorce the next and... oh yeah, your DUI. Do you need a DUI "specialist"? That's up to you. That may depend on what the issues are in your case - is it a search & seizure issue where you're challenging the stop? Or is it an attack on police procedures? On the alcohol level and testing procedures? Start with an internet search, narrow it down to your top 3-5 and start scheduling consultations. Whatever you do though - don't miss the 10 day window to request a hearing with the DMV or they'll automatically suspend your driver's license. Best of luck.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 7/15/2011
    Rothstein Law PLLC
    Rothstein Law PLLC | Eric Rothstein
    Where did this take place? I am a former federal and State prosecutor and now handle criminal defense, including DWI cases. Feel free to check out my web site and contact me. I've handled many DWI cases.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 7/15/2011
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