What Are The Top Misconceptions That People Have About DUI Charges?
People are confused about MVAs and then court, so I always start every consultation or defensive strategy meetings with, we have got to talk about the MVA consequences. It is separate, and then we have to talk about the court process. They are two separate places, two separate kinds of hearings, two separate rules or procedures and two separate applications of the constitution. At an administrative hearing, the Maryland’s highest courts have said the license is not a right, it is a privilege and therefore much less rights apply.
Common people who get charged are very confused about the differences between what is going to happen in court and with my driver’s license. That is why going and talking to a qualified lawyer who is experienced and knows what to do is so important and it is so hard to do this all by yourself. Can you do a speeding ticket by yourself? Yes, speeding tickets are made, or the way it goes is that people can do it by themselves but for DUIs you need to have someone who knows what they are doing in your corner ready to fight for you.
Advice For People Contemplating Pleading Guilty To DUI Charges
Many times, the waiting to go to court and the anxiety is worse than even the court itself or even if they would put somebody in jail for a weekend. The anxiety that builds up of waiting beforehand is so much worse. I try to tell people that, I tell them, “You are going to pay me, you are going to retain me to represent you. I want you to sort of compartmentalize it and give it to me, I’ll worry about it for you. You go about your life, go get your drug and alcohol evaluation and start the classes.” I recommend that many times for people to do this because the courts want to see it. It is also important for the court how soon you started it, meaning if I get DWI on the first and then hire a lawyer by the fourth and by the sixth, I am starting classes, the court looks at that.
The court looks at somebody who comes to court the first time and has not even had an alcohol evaluation. In those situations, what I do for the client is to continue the case and push it off so that you can look as good as you can in front of the judge. People do say, “I just want to plead guilty, I am guilty. And that is okay. We still have to protect your rights and we still have to try to get rid of the other tickets that you got charged with. We still have to make sure that you are going to get the best outcome without any points, or if it is a second offense, we have to try to keep you out of jail or try to minimize your exposure and manage with the rest.
You always want to go to any kind of a negotiation for anything and have leverage. If you go in and say, “I’m guilty, I’m looking for a plea”, you are never going to get the best bargain, you are always going to get their highest. The idea is to always go in and say, “I may have some issues with the way the police officer handled it”, or, “We have some issues with how the testing was done” even if you do not have any issues you could always find some criticism or something that was done not according to the procedure properly in order that you can use that, even if you are not going to go through it all the way, but at least you have an opportunity to use it for leverage to negotiation.
A lawyer wants to be able to review all the discovery, talk to the police officer or any witnesses that might be there and find out what they really have. Many times there might be a video of the stop and a lot of times, the video does not show what they say it shows. The videos are of poor quality or it does not record well or it does not record the area where they say it happened, where it actually occurred. It is very important when they say, “We have video”, and we have to watch the video before you agree to do anything.
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