Does California Offer Any Diversion Programs For DUI Cases?
In some jurisdictions, there are alternative sentences for DUI like electronic monitoring, home confinement, and drug court is available in some counties. So there are different alternatives to going to jail and actually serving time in jail. Private jail is available as well but there are alternatives available to serving time in county jail as well. It just depends on the jurisdiction and the flexibility of the court or the prosecutor.
Are More DUI Cases Settled With Plea Agreements As Opposed To Going To Trial?
Most people who get arrested for DUI plead guilty. I mean the statistics are probably close to 90% or greater. Deciding whether or not to accept a negotiated plea offer or a plea deal is just determined by the individual facts of each case and the particular person. So, for example, if we are able to get a great result on a non-alcohol related offense, offered to us in a DUI, a first offense, a second offense or third offense or even in a fourth offense or a felony, then the pros and cons of going for the sure thing is always discussed versus a risk that a person could lose or could win big by going to trial. So there is no specific formula to determine whether or not somebody should go to trial.
The decision is made with each client in each individual case. There are no 2 DUI cases that I’ve seen which are exactly alike. Each DUI case be it alcohol or drugs is different from any other. That’s because each case has a specific client with specific facts, with a specific prosecutor, with a specific judge, with specific police officers or a police officer. So there is no typical DUI case. In our judgement each DUI case is unique and we treat each client by focusing on the uniqueness of their particular case.
What Criteria Should Be Considered When Deciding Whether Or Not To Take A DUI Case To Trial?
In deciding whether or not to take a case to trial or whether or not we should accept an early disposition depends on a whole bunch of particular factors. For example, an early deal may be advantageous since the prosecutor may not know all of the facts of the particular case or may not know the background of our client. We are either under no obligation to tell the client or tell the prosecutor or tell the courts what we’ve learned from our clients because that’s confidential and we would never say anything. Many times we are able to get a good deal just because we are known in this area for fighting these DUI cases and winning these DUI cases. So that leads to the assessment that whether or not the prosecutor may feel or not feel that they can win a case at trial so it’s a whole bunch of different dynamics in play but we always know more about the case than the prosecutor.
So we are actually in a much better position to be able to talk with the client and give the client our best advice as to when is it a good time, if any to accept a negotiated plea deal or fight the case and go to trial. We wouldn’t tell our clients to take the deal just because it’ll be over quickly unless the client has some specific advantages of accepting the deal. Like I said earlier, the prosecution may not know all the facts of the case and once the deal is in, it’s in. Once a plea is entered and the court accepts it and goes to sentencing, it can’t be reopened by the prosecutors or the courts. So each case is different, each case is unique and requires a unique approach.
Why Is It Important To Retain An Experienced Attorney To Handle A DUI Case?
Why it is so important for experienced attorneys like us to be retained in a DUI or a drunk driving case is because we know the ins and outs of these types of cases. We know the ins and outs of the courts and the prosecutors. We know how the system works, we know how police officers would or would not testify, we know how experts would or would not testify both for the prosecution and for the defense. So we are in a much better position to advise the client as to which is the best approach to take in any particular case. I want to stress that each of our DUI clients in our DUI cases are unique and we respect that each and every client is an individual and we respect their individual circumstances.
One of the things that people learn after they get arrested for DUI are the tremendous consequences and the life altering events that could occur as a result of either being arrested for a DUI or being convicted of DUI. Many times people that work for companies think that they need to report themselves when getting arrested for DUI. Each individual client’s situation is different and the same thing with a person who is convicted of DUI. In California we represent a lot of lawyers, doctors, professional people that are licensed by the state of California. We also represent teachers, nurses, CPAs and engineers. The list is endless especially since the government is pretty much getting in almost every industry and licensing it. Anybody who is convicted of DUI, at some point in time the individual is required to notify their own state licensing agency.
This creates another consequence for people who are professionally licensed that their license can be in jeopardy. Dentists is another example. Anybody in the medical profession. Their license can be in jeopardy, their job can be in jeopardy. Oftentimes malpractice carriers in different fields inquire if anybody has been arrested for or convicted of an offense or an alcohol related offense. Credit reporting bureaus or credit agencies are keeping track of DUI convictions. Employment opportunities, travelling to Canada and different countries around the world right now and it’s been this way for a while that if a person is convicted of a DUI and they are a US citizen, they are going to get booted out of Canada, they won’t be able to get in.
Sometimes they may get lucky and still be able to get in but generally speaking, Canada will turn away an American citizen who has been convicted of a DUI and it’s for a first offense DUI. The same is true, I think, for Australia.
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