If you received a citation for driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, you need to speak with a DUI attorney in Toledo. It is imperative that you get some advice and have your questions answered, so that you can make an informed decision on how you want to proceed with your case. You will want to speak with more than one attorney who may or may not end up representing you. Many DUI attorneys offer a free consultation. But more important than the fee are the questions you should ask. It is imperative that you at least ask the following:
1.) How long have you been practicing?
This one is self-explanatory. While an attorney who just passed the bar exam will most likely be less expensive than a seasoned practitioner, that attorney will also have much less experience with everything from the law to the local court.
2.) What is your experience representing people charged with DUI?
An attorney may have been practicing for forty years, but if he or she doesn't have experience handling driving under the influence cases, then it almost becomes the case of the lawyer who just passed the bar. It is imperative that you find an attorney who is experienced in and dedicated to DUI cases.
3.) How many DUI cases have you taken to a jury trial?
More often than not, DUI cases end up in some sort of plea deal or diversion program. But some DUI cases go to trial. If you go to trial, you want an attorney who is comfortable in the courtroom and dealing with the strangers who will be deciding your fate.
4.) Will you be handling my case?
Many times you will meet with one attorney and then never see them again. If you feel comfortable with the attorney that you meet with, then ask if they are the attorney who will be handling your case. Tied into this question is how that attorney will communicate with you.
5.) Do you have malpractice insurance?
This is a no brainer. Any established attorney should have malpractice insurance.
6.) Have you ever been disciplined by the State Bar?
Attorneys are disciplined by the State Bar for all sorts of reasons. Try to get more information about what happened before making a decision if the attorney you meet with has ever been disciplined.
7.) How much will you charge me?
DUI cases are often handled on a flat fee basis. Whatever the DUI attorney charges you will be the final cost. Or will it? Get information on what types of costs you will also be charged for (i.e. photocopying, investigator fees, subpoenas, etc.).
8.) How will my case end up?
This is a trick question. He or she is lying and most likely committing an ethical violation if the attorney you meet with guarantees a result. The answer you want to hear is that the attorney can't guarantee a result, but will work tirelessly to reach the goals you set together.
Finally, you will want to discuss with the attorney what challenges appear in your case. That way, you can put together a strategy for dealing with those challenges.