If you have been arrested for a DUI charge, there are certain things you must understand with regard to the criminal justice system. It can be frustrating, especially if you are being charged for the first time. The first thing is always to contact your attorney to remain silent. Don’t be quick to divulge information that might put you into more trouble with law enforcement agents. Below Are 6 Things to Know if You Are Arrested for a DUI
1. You Have a Right to Attorney
The first thing to do after you have been charged with DUI is to hire a qualified and experienced attorney. An attorney understands how criminal justice works and will advise you on how to go about the case. Having the right DUI attorney by your side can increase your chances of ending up with a favorable outcome.
Not all attorneys can handle DUI cases. You should ensure that the attorney you are hiring has a good record of handling DUI cases. Ask them how many such cases they have handled and what was the outcomes. Hiring someone who doesn’t understand DUI law will only work to your disadvantage.
2. You Will Lose Your License for At least 180 Days
Within a few weeks after being arrested, you are likely to receive a notice that your driving license has been suspended or confiscated for at least 180 days or six months. Whether or not you will regain your license depends on the outcome of the DUI case. If you are a first offender, the suspension period for the license might be shorter. In some cases, the accused person can get specialized driving privileges. This will allow you to drive to certain places without your normal license.
3. You Will Be Taken To A Police Station
After being arrested for a DUI charge, you will be taken to a police station where you are supposed to undergo a chemical test. The test is normally done using a Breathalyzer but can also be a urine or blood test. It is important to consult with your attorney before taking the test. You have a right to refuse to take the test if you feel your rights are being violated. However, refusing to take the test means that your driving license will automatically be suspended.
4. The Burden of Proof
In DUI charges, the prosecution side is supposed to prove that the accused person was driving under influence of drugs or alcohol. This is normally conducted through the presentation of evidence in court including video footage, witness testimonies and chemical tests. The burden of proof lies with the prosecution to prove beyond reasonable doubt that the accused person committed a DUI charge.
The court will have no choice but to set the defendant free if the prosecution is unable to meet the burden of proof. The defense team doesn’t have to prove anything. All they can do is poke holes in the evidence brought by the prosecution.
5. Bail For a DUI Charge
A judge in a DUI case may introduce extra terms and conditions when setting bail. The extra terms may include drug or alcohol rehabilitation, installation of an ignition interlock device in your vehicle or mandatory attendance at Alcoholics Anonymous meetings.
Besides, there are a few things you must understand about bail bonds. A co-signer is responsible for paying the premium on a bail bond. The premium is an amount that equals 10% of the bond amount. The premium can also be viewed as a service charge. If you live in San Diego for instance, you can look up San Diego bail bond services to help you with the process.
6. Liability of Third Parties
The liability of third parties is another important thing to remember in a DUI case. If you have been charged with DUI, you may be held responsible for any kind of injuries or damages that happen due to your actions. This means that you could be forced to pay medical bills, property damage as well as pain and suffering resulting from the accident.
A DUI charge can have far-reaching consequences. For example, you can lose your driving license, pay for the medical bills of the injured people, and get arrested among other things. However, hiring an experienced lawyer can increase your chances of winning the case.