What should I do after a DUI citation? 55 Answers as of August 25, 2011

I got a DUI citation and this is my first offense of any kind. I have no idea what to expect and I am really worried about how this will affect my future. What can I do?

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Law Office of Eric Sterkenburg
Law Office of Eric Sterkenburg | Eric Sterkenburg
First contact the DMV and schedule a hearing on the case. Next hire an attorney and provide him with all the facts. The attorney will represent you at the DMV hearing and in court. Do not talk to anyone about the case! If found guilty of a DUI you will have to go to classes, pay fines, go to jail or community service. This will stay on your record for ten years or more. It will increase your insurance price, and may affect your ability to get a job.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 8/25/2011
Law Office of Phillip Weiser
Law Office of Phillip Weiser | Phillip L. Weiser
You should consult with an attorney who is experienced in DUI defense.
Answer Applies to: Kansas
Replied: 8/25/2011
Freeborn Law Offices, P.S.
Freeborn Law Offices, P.S. | Steve Freeborn
Consult with an attorney. A DUI is very serious as it carries with it mandatory jail time, fines in excess of $1,000.00, loss of license, alcohol evaluation and treatment, 5 years of probation, increased insurance premiums. Do not take this lightly. Seek out an attorney to help you.
Answer Applies to: Washington
Replied: 8/25/2011
The Law Office of Kevin O'Grady
The Law Office of Kevin O'Grady | Kevin O'Grady
A DUI can have a serious affect on you. In Hawaii state courts, presently, a DUI conviction cannot be expunged, although you can request a pardon. A DUI conviction will affect your good name with a traffic criminal conviction, possible jail, community service, loss of driving privileges, and of course an effect on your insurance. The government will forever hold that arrest and conviction against you should you ever encounter law enforcement again. If you really want to fight your DUI case you must find an attorney willing to fight thoroughly and relentlessly for you and you must be willing to fight the case all the way. Timelines are short once the arrest has occurred so it is best to hire a DUI attorney quickly.
Answer Applies to: Hawaii
Replied: 8/24/2011
Donahue, Sowa & Magana Attorneys at Law
Donahue, Sowa & Magana Attorneys at Law | Glenn M. Sowa
As is the case with many questions on this site, you must speak with a qualified attorney. Conviction of this offense mandates a revocation (permanent loss) of your driver's license. Although most first offenders do not go to jail, without professional help the chances increase that the outcome will not be favorable.
Answer Applies to: Illinois
Replied: 8/24/2011
    Law Office of Michael Morgan, l.L.C.
    Law Office of Michael Morgan, l.L.C. | Michael Morgan
    I would suggest you either meet with a criminal defense lawyer and I offer a free initial consultation or screen for a public defender
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 8/24/2011
    Russman Law
    Russman Law | Ryan Russman
    After you are arrested for a DWI the first thing you should do is contact a qualified attorney to assist you in navigating the judicial system that you now face. A qualified attorney will give you a clear understanding of what the landscape looks like in terms of challenges and your responsibilities. They will also provide you with comfort that someone who understands the process is assisting you with this difficult legal challenge.
    Answer Applies to: New Hampshire
    Replied: 8/24/2011
    Law Office of Richard Williams
    Law Office of Richard Williams | Richard Williams
    If convicted of DUI you could be facing a jail sentence of up to one year, a fine of not less than $600 nor more than $2,100, suspension of your driving license for a period of 90 days and mandatory attendance ifor the DUI school and the Victim's Impact Panel. Other problems could be cancellation of your automobile insurance, loss of employment if driving is necessary or your company maintains automobile insurance on you, and a permanent record of a DUI conviction.
    Answer Applies to: Alabama
    Replied: 8/24/2011
    Austin Legal Services, PLC
    Austin Legal Services, PLC | Jared Austin
    I would suggest hiring an experienced DUI attorney. Even if it is your first offense, there is still a lot at stake including: possible jail, vehicle imobilization, probation, fines, costs, driver's license suspension, license points, and higher insurance premiums. A good DUI attorney will more than pay for himself in what he can save you. At least have an attorney review the police report for any errors that could get the charges dismissed or reduced.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 8/24/2011
    Michael Breczinski
    Michael Breczinski | Michael Breczinski
    Get a good attorney. DO NOT PLEAD GUILTY AT THE ARRAIGNMENT!!!! If you do you lose all your bargaining power. Your attorney can't do much for you if you plead guilty before you get him or her.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 8/24/2011
    Law Office of Edward J. Blum
    Law Office of Edward J. Blum | Edward J. Blum
    Honestly, you need to consult with a lawyer. You need to tell the lawyer what happened and allow him to evaluate your case. DUI is highly fact specific. No two people arrested have the same case or the same approach to defending it.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/23/2011
    Timothy J. Thill P.C.
    Timothy J. Thill P.C. | Timothy J. Thill
    The best advice is to hire an attorney to represent you in this case. You are not looking at jail time, probably, but the ramifications of this offense can haunt you in your future life. There is an order in Illinois only, for court supervision, which is not a permanent record, however, it is not expungeable.
    Answer Applies to: Illinois
    Replied: 8/23/2011
    Gregory Casale Attorney at Law
    Gregory Casale Attorney at Law | Gregory Casale
    You will need to hire a lawyer to represent you. He/she will be able to guide you through this difficult process. I recommend that you hire an attorney who specializes in Criminal Defense and OUI/ DUI/DWI cases. Many lawyers are generalists and while some may do a good job with a lot of different types of cases, unless you know this to be true, you are far better off with a lawyer who focuses on one or two practice areas. For instance, I limit my practice to Criminal Defense and Serious Personal Injury. This allows me to have a much deeper focus in these two areas than if I needed to represent clients on numerous areas of practice.
    Answer Applies to: Massachusetts
    Replied: 8/23/2011
    Law Office of Thomas F. Mueller
    Law Office of Thomas F. Mueller | Thomas Mueller
    First, request a DMV Hearing. It is explained on the pink slip the police gave you. It must be requested within 10 days of your arrest. Next consult a good lawyer. The whole process is too detailed to explain in this venue. There are many lawyers that offer free consultations.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/23/2011
    Edward  D. Dowling IV Attorney at Law
    Edward D. Dowling IV Attorney at Law | Edward D. Dowling IV
    You should hire an attorney to either negotiate a favorable plea bargain or go to trial.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 8/23/2011
    Craig W. Elhart, P.C.
    Craig W. Elhart, P.C. | Craig Elhart
    You have the right to be represented by an attorney either retained by you or appointed by the Court if you cannot afford an attorney. At the arraignment, you should plead not guilty and determine how you are going to obtain an attorney.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 8/23/2011
    Wallin & Klarich: A Law Corporation
    Wallin & Klarich: A Law Corporation | Christopher Lee
    A DUI citation results in two agencies taking action against you, the DMV and the Court. After a DUI citation, you have 10 days from date of citation to set up a DMV hearing or else your license will be suspended in 30 days. With regarding to the Court process, your citation will indicate a date for you to appear at court and your first court date will be the arraignment (if the prosecutor filed charges). You will likely be charged with Vehicle Code 23152(a) and/or (b). What you should do is first set up a DMV hearing. Second, hire an attorney who will handle the DMV matter and your court case. It is important to hire an attorney who has tremendous experience in handling DMV matters.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/23/2011
    Law Offices of Christopher Jackson
    Law Offices of Christopher Jackson | Christopher L. Jackson
    You should call a few lawyers and find one that you like and hire them. You need a lawyer that handles DUIs to investigate the case and determine whether you have a defense or not. You also need a lawyer to help explain the process to you and negotiate with the county attorney for the best outcome.
    Answer Applies to: Kentucky
    Replied: 8/23/2011
    Law Office of Brendan M. Kelly
    Law Office of Brendan M. Kelly | Brendan M. Kelly
    DUI's are major traffic offense that will impact your life for at least the next 12 years, so the best advice I have is to contact an attorney that specialization is DUI. It will be the best advise you can get!
    Answer Applies to: Nebraska
    Replied: 8/23/2011
    Law Office of Peter F. Goldscheider
    Law Office of Peter F. Goldscheider | Peter Goldscheider
    Seek a consultation with an experienced certified criminal law specialist. (Try to stay away from so-called "DUI specialists" they are usually high volume mills that will not give your case individual attention). Most will give an initial consult for free.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/23/2011
    Gonzalez Law Associates P.C.
    Gonzalez Law Associates P.C. | Carlos Gonzalez
    There are many serious ramifications of such a charge ranging from mandated license suspensions to hefty fines and now a mandatory ignition interlock to be installed in all vehicles registered to an individual convicted of such a crime. I would suggest hiring an attorney immediately to make sure your rights are best protected.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 8/23/2011
    Healan Law Offices
    Healan Law Offices | William D. Healan, III
    Talk to a DUI lawyer right away. You might need to send a letter to the department of driver services within 10 days of arrest.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 8/23/2011
    Goolsby Law Office
    Goolsby Law Office | Richard Goolsby
    We recommend you hire a criminal defense attorney and discuss your rights and options. There might be legal defenses, depending on the facts, so retain a lawyer ASAP. Good luck.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 8/23/2011
    Harden Law Offices
    Harden Law Offices | Leonard D. Harden
    Call the best dwi lawyer in your area to discuss the facts of your case. Most will meet with you free of charge and will explain process and options.
    Answer Applies to: New Hampshire
    Replied: 8/23/2011
    Correia-Champa & Mailhot
    Correia-Champa & Mailhot | Susan Correia Champa
    I would contact an attorney immediately to discuss your particular case. An attorney can analyze the police report and discuss with you your rights
    Answer Applies to: Massachusetts
    Replied: 8/23/2011
    Law Offices of John J. Connors, Esq.
    Law Offices of John J. Connors, Esq. | John J. Connors, Esq.
    The first thing you need to do is to contact a good attorney. Just because you received a citation does not mean that you are guilty. A complete analysis of the stop, a check of the certification of the breath machine if there was a breath test, a review of the field sobriety tests are all needed. An attorney can explain all of the options after talking with you and reviewing all of the reports.
    Answer Applies to: Massachusetts
    Replied: 8/23/2011
    Law Offices of John Carney
    Law Offices of John Carney | John Carney
    You should retain an experienced DWI or criminal law attorney in your city or town who has at least 20 years experience and specializes in criminal law. The best lawyers are not cheap, but they get better results and can often prevent you from getting a criminal record that will cost you much more in insurance payments, lost wages, and lost opportunities. I have 27 years experience handling DWI cases and offer free consultations.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 8/23/2011
    Law Office of Thomas A. Medford, Jr., PC
    Law Office of Thomas A. Medford, Jr., PC | Thomas A. Medford, Jr.
    The best advise is contact an attorney who is skilled in the defense of DUI cases. You may also be able to enter a diversion program where the charge will be reduced or dismissed upon completion of the program. The prosecutor's office could give you that information.
    Answer Applies to: District of Columbia
    Replied: 8/23/2011
    Thomas J. Tomko Attorney At law
    Thomas J. Tomko Attorney At law | Thomas J. Tomko
    Thank you for your inquiry You should consider hiring an attorney to discuss your case, review your options, and to develop a strategy which can meet your goals. In macomb, oakland or wayne counties, you can contact my office to arrange an appointment to meet to discuss your case. I hope that this was helpful.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 8/23/2011
    Michael Maltby, Attorney at Law
    Michael Maltby, Attorney at Law | Michael Maltby
    Chances are that you can negotiate something short of a dui. You need an attorney who can assess the case and go to bat for you. That's all I can say without more facts.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 8/23/2011
    Cynthia Henley, Lawyer
    Cynthia Henley, Lawyer | Cynthia Henley
    You need to hire a lawyer to represent you because there are many consequences including the loss of your license.
    Answer Applies to: Texas
    Replied: 8/23/2011
    Smith & John
    Smith & John | Kenneth Craig Smith, Jr.
    I would suggest hiring an attorney. You may be able to resolve the matter without having your license suspended and you should ultimately get it expunged from your record.
    Answer Applies to: Louisiana
    Replied: 8/22/2011
    Law Office of Jeff Yeh
    Law Office of Jeff Yeh | Jeff Yeh
    Hire a DUI specialist and let him take over. First and foremost is the DMV hearing, of which you have only 10 days to request or lose your license by default. Then comes the case in court. Pleading guilty means a criminal record, probation, classes, potential IID installation, increase in insurance premium, possibly jail even on a first offense. DUI should not be taken lightly. Consult a DUI specialist ASAP.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/22/2011
    Klisz Law Office, PLLC
    Klisz Law Office, PLLC | Timothy J. Klisz
    Hire a skilled local attorney and hang on for the ride. You should be able to avoid jail, but will still have some sting.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 8/22/2011
    Srai Law Office
    Srai Law Office | Gurjit Singh Srai, Esq.
    You should request a DMV hearing on your license suspension within 10 days of your arrest. Hire a competent attorney who can handle your case. DUI cases can be intricate. The police must have conducted a proper stop and all the police tests must have been done according to strict guidelines.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/22/2011
    Law Office of Joe Dane
    Law Office of Joe Dane | Joe Dane
    The short answer is you get an attorney. You have 10 days from the date of your arrest to contact the DMV and request a hearing or they will automatically suspend your driver's license. Your attorney can examine the case to see if you have legal, factual, technical or other defenses to driving under the influence. A DUI conviction will stay on your DMV history for 10 years and on your criminal history indefinitely. It can impact immigration, travel and potentially job applications. It's time for a lawyer.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/22/2011
    Dennis Roberts, a P.C.
    Dennis Roberts, a P.C. | Dennis Roberts
    Stop drinking. You will pay a large fine (almost $2000) and a large fee for a DUI school (also about $2000), Depending on your county you might have to do two days in jail although many counties let you do it by picking up trash, etc. The only impact on your future is that you won't have enough money to buy a beer when you are done, and that is probably a good thing.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/22/2011
    Law Office of Casey Bryant, P.A. | Casey Bryant
    Call an attorney within 10 days to fight the DMV suspension of your drivers license. You only have 10 days to schedule this hearing. At the hearing the arresting officer will have to testify under oath and the information you learn there can be used to help you win the criminal case.
    Answer Applies to: Florida
    Replied: 8/22/2011
    Andersen Law PLLC
    Andersen Law PLLC | Craig Andersen
    You are right to be concerned. You can look at the possible penalties you're facing on the Washington Department of Licensing web site. Beyond that, don't talk about the charge or facts with anyone but your attorney. When you go to court, you should plead "not guilty" even if you believe you are. The "not guilty" plea keeps your options open and given the complex nature of DUI, there may be a way to beat it. Other than that, hire an attorney who has experience with DUI cases.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 8/22/2011
    Law Office of Rankin Johnson IV, LLC
    Law Office of Rankin Johnson IV, LLC | Rankin Johnson IV
    Talk to a lawyer. But the lawyer's advice will probably be: "Do diversion." Diversion lets you do treatment in exchange for dismissal of the charges, so you are never convicted and won't go to jail. A breath test failure or refusal carries a license suspension, but you can get a hardship permit to get to work. The first offense is a hassle. It's a serious hassle, but it will be okay. Don't get another DUI; the penalties go up steeply.
    Answer Applies to: Oregon
    Replied: 8/22/2011
    Dichter Law Office, PLLC
    Dichter Law Office, PLLC | Jonathan Dichter
    Getting a DUI is a scary event. Don't panic. Call a DUI attorney who can help walk you through the process step by step. Do it at the soonest, as your license may already be in jeopardy.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 8/22/2011
    Leyba Defense, PLLC
    Leyba Defense, PLLC | Matthew Leyba
    You should immediately speak with a DUI Attorney. They will be able to give you a better idea of what to expect and what your options might be.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 8/22/2011
    The Law Office of Harry E. Hudson, Jr.
    The Law Office of Harry E. Hudson, Jr. | Harry E. Hudson, Jr.
    Hire an attorney. Have attorney get copy of police reports, discuss potential options with attorney.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/22/2011
    My Advocate Group
    My Advocate Group | Robert Myers
    I would recommend talking to an attorney. Many, including myself, will do free consultations. If you do not hire an attorney, then you will go to court and the DA or Judge will tell you that if you plead guilty then they will give you a big fine and make you take some classes, and the rest depends on the county for additional requirements. They cannot and will not give you legal advice about whether or not your case is worth fighting, they wont tell you about the increase in your insurance for many years to come, they may tell you about the right to fight your drivers' license suspension but might tell you to contact DMV. If you plead not guilty and inform the judge that you do not have money for an attorney, then the judge will assign the Public Defender to your case. They can advise you on many of these things but are not permitted to handle your DMV hearing. If you decide to hire an attorney, they should do all of those things that the court and DA cannot do. Also, if you hire an attorney, you should make sure that your hiring them to do your DMV hearing as well as your court case. Good luck.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/22/2011
    Nelson & Lawless
    Nelson & Lawless | Terry Nelson
    You can plead guilty or fight the charges. A DUI conviction on your record will cost you substantial increase in vehicle insurance for years, will adversely affect your employability and credit, will cost substantial court fines and related expenses, will result in several years of Probation, among other things. 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, facts and sympathies are available for legal arguments, for evidence suppression or other motions, or at trial. If you don't know how to do these things effectively, then hire an attorney that does, who will try to get a dismissal, diversion, reduction or other decent outcome through plea bargain, or take it to trial if appropriate. Keep in mind a little free advice: When charged or arrested for DUI, whether alcohol or drugs, then upon release from jail or booking the defendant is given documents that include a notice that you have only ten days to file a request with DMV for a hearing on an appeal of an automatic one-year suspension of your license imposed by DMV. That is separate and runs consecutively with any suspension that may be imposed by the court. Contact DMV and do so, timely, then appear at your scheduled DMV appeal hearing and present any supporting evidence and testimony. If you don't know how to do these things effectively, then hire an attorney that does.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/22/2011
    Attorney at Law
    Attorney at Law | Michael J. Kennedy
    You should never face DUI charges alone, nor with an attorney who is not established as a DUI attorney, because the minefield is tricky [more so than for murder] but negotiable [if you step carefully and competently].
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/22/2011
    Jason Overton, Attorney at Law
    Jason Overton, Attorney at Law | Jason Overton
    Hire a lawyer immediately. A DUI has serious and long term consequences. Some of this can be avoided by acting quickly.
    Answer Applies to: Alabama
    Replied: 8/22/2011
    Miller & Harrison, LLC
    Miller & Harrison, LLC | David Harrison
    You should consult a lawyer, present the facts and police report to him or her and see what they recommend. You'll find the consultation won't be expensive plus it will give you much piece of mind.
    Answer Applies to: Colorado
    Replied: 8/22/2011
    Betts Legal Services
    Betts Legal Services | Shawn M. Betts
    There is quite a range of potential consequences depending on the circumstances and outcome. Drivers license ramifications, higher insurance rates, and court costs particularly. A misdemeanor DUI conviction isn't usually a huge problem unless you are employed in a high security job or one that requires a clean driving record. But it is difficult to give specifics without knowing more about the specific case.
    Answer Applies to: Minnesota
    Replied: 8/22/2011
    Ramsell & Associates LLC
    Ramsell & Associates LLC | Donald Ramsell
    A DUI can affect a person forever. It is important to get some advice from an attorney. Even if guilty, an attorney can help avoid a conviction or loss of license.
    Answer Applies to: Illinois
    Replied: 8/22/2011
    John Segelbaum, P.S.
    John Segelbaum, P.S. | John Segelbaum
    DUI is a serious charge punishable with up to 364 days jail and a $5000.00 fine. The is a mandatory jail sentence of at least one day, a license suspension of at leats 90 days, a one year ignition interlock license and five years of probation. In addition, you face an an administrative suspension of your license by DOL. You need an experienced attorney to represent you.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 8/22/2011
    Law Offices of Dan Bacal | Dan Bacal
    Normally you have to request a DMV hearing within 10 days and your first court date should be approximately one month after the citation. Many attorneys provide free consultations for DUI and I suggest you consult promptly with an attorney.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/22/2011
    Wallin & Klarich: A Law Corporation
    Wallin & Klarich: A Law Corporation | Paul Wallin
    Common sense would dictate you immediately call us toll free for free information about what happens now. Go to wklawdui.com or call us at 877-466-5245. You are 100 per cent right to be concerned because there are many consequences to a DUI. Also normally you only have ten days to get a DMV hearing set with the DMV so your license isn't suspended. Did you do that yet?
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/22/2011
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