DUI Due Diligence

Driving Under the Influence and Due Diligence are not logical companions.  If you did your due diligence, you would have gotten a designated driver or made other transportation arrangements ahead of time.  However, if you are charged with DUI, there is some due diligence you can take to help the penalty fit the crime. A DUI is a serious charge which should be treated seriously.  Besides possible injury or loss of life, fines for DUI convictions start at $500 and run into thousands of dollars, depending on how many times you have been convicted, your blood alcohol level, and if you had a minor in the car with you.  Those are just the penalty expenses, which do not include court costs, legal fees, insurance increases, and possible labor hours lost due to incarceration and/or community service, and/or DUI education. While alcohol can impair your ability to operate a motor vehicle correctly with safety considerations to yourself and others, currently we deal with this problem through penalty, but there are flaws in our system. A DUI defense often deals with proper testing procedure and appropriate punishment.  Was the evidence obtained correctly and is it scientific?  Does the penalty fit the crime?  […] Read More

Distracted Driving–What?

If you are reading this blog while driving STOP READING.  Safely pull over and park, and then continue reading. Distracted driving can mean driving while doing everyday things such as reading, eating, adjusting your radio or playlist, and texting or talking on your mobile phone.  Of course driving with a Blood Alcohol Level of 0.02 or higher can also be distracting (though it may not an ‘everyday thing’). Some say we never really grow up, we only learn to act in public.  If that breaks down, you may want a lawyer. Alcohol can impair your ability to operate a motor vehicle correctly with safety considerations to yourself and others.  Currently we deal with this problem through penalty, but there are flaws in our system. A DUI defense often deals with proper testing procedure and appropriate punishment.  Was the evidence obtained correctly and is it scientific?  Does the penalty fit the crime?  If you do not question these issues, then you sentence yourself to whatever the State has to say. There are a lot of situations where having an attorney can be very helpful to get the best resolution possible from unfortunate circumstances.  A DUI charge is not the least of […] Read More

Hey Guys (And Gals)…

Hey guys (and gals), if you have a problem, you deal with it, right?  The same is true for a DUI arrest. A DUI is a serious problem.  Treat it seriously. A DUI (Driving Under the Influence) charge means you probably got caught and there is evidence against you.  It is an arrest with fingerprinting and a criminal record.  However, there are things you can do—regardless of guilt—to take a sober step in a more positive direction.  One is to get legal representation. Make sure the penalty fits the crime.   There is a range of penalties for DUI, depending on the circumstances, and the prosecutors of this area are very professional at doing their jobs.  You are likely to get the maximum penalty if your rights are not properly asserted.  A defense lawyer can help you work with the prosecution to find a resolution best for everyone. You do not have to make a bad situation worse by shutting down options.  Seek competent legal representation to help you deal with a serious problem.   Read More

Bar Tab & DUI Fines

A DUI is an expensive bar tab.  Fines for DUI convictions start at $500 and run into thousands of dollars, depending on how many times you have been convicted, your blood alcohol level, and if you had a minor in the car with you.  Those are just the penalty expenses, which do not include court costs, legal fees, insurance increases, and possible labor hours lost due to incarceration and/or community service, and/or DUI education. A DUI is a serious charge.  Treat it seriously.  A DUI charge is an arrest, finger printing, and a criminal record…not to mention the financial inconvenience (and possible injury or loss of life).  Any time you are facing heavy fines or jail time, make sure the penalty fits the crime.  Do not accept the maximum penalty just because you do not know better.  Seek competent legal counsel to work with prosecutors for a correct resolution. There are a lot of things you can do with $500 plus.  Paying for a DUI might not be the top of your list.  The best choice is prevention—do not drive while intoxicated and get stuck with a bar tab you cannot afford. Have a safe and happy Memorial Day weekend. […] Read More

Old Enough to Know Better

Are you old enough to know better? Did you do it anyway? The phrase, “old enough to know better,” applies to a lot of DUI defendants.  Just because you are old enough to know better does not mean you lack rights, however.  People can make mistakes at any age, but one bad decision does not have to necessarily lead to another. A DUI charge means you probably got caught and there is evidence against you.  It is a conviction with fingerprinting and a criminal record.  However, you do not have to put yourself in a worse position by shutting down choices.  Seek legal counsel for the best possible outcome of a bad situation.  A defense attorney can properly assert your rights and work with prosecutors to find an appropriate resolution. Old Enough-2-Know Better is the name of the band I am in with my brother, Stephen.  We are Old Enough-2-Know Better, but we enjoy playing and singing anyway!  If you would like to hear us live, we will be in Palatka tonight at the Island Restaurant at 7:30 pm. Read More

DUI v. DOA

You cannot recover from death too quickly.  When a client says something bad has happened to him, it cannot be too bad…because he is still talking.  It is a lot easier to have a meeting with a live DUI defendant than with a DOA client.   Driving Under the Influence (DUI) is a serious charge and it comes with a wide variety of penalties.  Prosecutors of this area are here to do a job, and they do a very good job. If the defendant does not properly assert his rights, he is likely to get the maximum penalty.   A DUI defense often deals with proper testing procedure and appropriate punishment.  Was the evidence obtained correctly and is it scientific?  Does the penalty fit the crime?  If you do not question these issues, then you sentence yourself to whatever the State has to say.   There are a lot of situations where having an attorney can be very helpful to get the best resolution possible from unfortunate circumstances.  A DUI charge is not the least of these.   Do not call an attorney if you are DOA! Read More

Celebrating My Bar Day

My view of DUI (Driving Under the Influence) used to be that first-time offenders should serve on the firing squad for the second-time offenders.  After becoming a lawyer, though, I recognize there are flaws in our system.  Law School has not made me so much a lawyer as it has helped me see things I could not see before. Currently the only way we have to encourage prevention of DUI is through enforcement of law.  The problem is that sometimes enforcement is aimed incorrectly or improperly.  Nobody wants to have to call a lawyer, but sometimes having an attorney by your side can really help. The key to a DUI defense is to get legal counsel and get it quickly because there are deadlines that have to be met in order to protect your rights.  A competent defense attorney can help you work out a proper resolution while protecting your rights.  Today is my fourth anniversary practicing law, but I am not planning to celebrate Lindsay Lohan-style. Read More

DUI & Legal Limits

Some say we never really grow up, we only learn to act in public.  If that breaks down, you may want to get a lawyer. DUI is an unpopular topic, often for good reason; however, if you are charged with Driving Under the Influence, it becomes a necessary discussion. The St. Johns County Sheriff’s Department booklet has this to say about DUI: “It is illegal to operate a vehicle under the influence of alcohol or drugs.  DUI can be proved by a Blood Alcohol limit of 0.08 and higher or if your normal driving faculties are impaired.  Impairment can be caused by alcohol, alcohol in combination with other medications, legal and illegal drugs.  Penalties for DUI include:  arrests, court costs and fines (a court case can cost up to $6,000), impoundment, license revocation of six months to a year, DUI School and Evaluation, ignition interlock device, probation of up to a year, 50 hours of community service and increased insurance costs.  A DUI stays on your record for 75 years.” Alcohol can impair your ability to operate a motor vehicle correctly with safety considerations to yourself and others.  Currently we deal with this problem through penalty, but there are flaws […] Read More